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2005 USA Wildwater Nationals and Western Junior Team Trials

John Pinyerd
USAWildwater Committee Chair

April 15, 2005 -- Salida, CO

The 2005 USA Wildwater Nationals and the Western Junior Team Trails are being hosted by the 57th annual FIBArk Whitewater Festival June 16-19, 2005.

You truly owe it to yourself to attend this year's USA Wildwater National Championships/Western Junior Team Trials that are being held in Salida, Colorado in an area know as "The Boating Capital of the World" and "The Heart of the Rockies." Salida lies about 150 miles south of Denver and is truly one of the most beautify areas in the world. With towering mountain peaks as a backdrop, Salida offers a scenic beauty seldom surpassed and lies near the midpoint of 100 miles of pristine whitewater on the Arkansas River.

The FIBArk Whitewater Festival has been ongoing for 57 years. FIBArk (First in Boating on the Arkansas) began as a bet between two friends who challenged each other to a 56 mile canoe race on the Arkansas River from Salida to Canon City through the famous Royal Gorge. While the original event was limited to a downriver race with 23 entrants and only two finishers, today's FIBArk festivities have grown to include numerous events and hundreds of competitors. In addition to hosting the 2005 USA Wildwater Nationals/Western Junior Trials, the 2005 FIBArk Whitewater Festival will include the classic 26 mile FIBArk Downriver Race on Sunday, Slalom races, Raft Races, Rodeo, running events, etc., and fun for the whole family.

This year the Wildwater/Downriver events will be scheduled to insure that they work well from a physiological stand point as well as a practical standpoint for out of towners. The US Nationals Sprint races will be held on Friday, June 17th with the US Nationals Classic race on Saturday, June 18th. Both US Nationals events are planned to be on the class III Bear Creek section of the Arkansas just downstream of Salida. These races will also serve to help competitors learn a key section of the FIBArk classic 26 mile Downriver Race that will be held on Sunday from Salida to Cotopaxi.

The US Wildwater Nationals will also serve as the venue for the US Western Junior Team Trials. Competition will be tough in some of the classes for the 11 remaining open positions on the USA Junior team that will compete later this summer in Italy. The open positions are: C-2 (four), C-1 (three), K-1 (two) and K-1W (two). The remaining positions were filled at Eastern Jr. Trials earlier this year by Emily Stein, Erin Wilder, Eric Orenstein, Chandler Jones, and Joel Abrahams.

Nationals Awards will be presented to both the Junior and Senior Classes for 1st-3rd places. In order to promote growth in the sport, both the sprint and the classic events will be recognized, in addition to presenting awards for the overall combined medalist at both events. Also, there is NO requirement that there must be 3 boats per class.

Here are the links to more information:

Also, please feel free to let me know your questions,

John Pinyerd
Chairman - USA Wildwater