A 32-Mile Open Water Paddling Marathon | Niagara to Toronto
Schedule and Rules
July 28-29, 2018. A 2-day holding period is used to improve the odds of a good conditions.
Crossing will run from Port Dalhousie to Cherry Beach in Toronto. If it is deemed safe, the race will start, even if it’s especially tough.
Registration window opens March 1st, 2018. Window closes June 17th, 2018.
Entrants will be asked to submit some paddling/athletic history. An ability to paddle at least 8:30/km for an extended period is desirable, as is experience in open water.
Race directors reserve the right to reject entries from paddlers with insufficient experience. In such cases, registration fees will be refunded.
Each paddler will receive a race shirt, jersey, poster, finishers award and food/drink.
Entrants are responsible for their own travel/accommodation and retaining an escort boat that meets requirements (one escort boat per paddler or relay team).
Evening before race – Check-in and briefing for paddlers and escort boat captains at Pier 61 Restaurant, Port Dalhouise.
Race day, 5:30 am – Safety check begins at the start area
6:00 am – Sunrise
6:30 am – Escort boats should be loaded and on the water
6:45 am – Racers meeting
7:00 am – Start
1:00 pm – First paddlers expected to finish
3:00 pm – Flexible cutoff time (could be extended in safe conditions)
Food and awards to follow
START LINE PERMISSION
Before the race, all paddlers must:
1) Submit signed paddler and escort boat captain waivers.
2) Pass a safety check (jersey, PFD, leash, and signalling device).
3) Confirm escort boat position in the waiting area.
Once all conditions are met, the paddler will receive a race sticker to affix to their board, granting permission to move to the start line.
Race classes: Male SUP (open); female SUP (open); male paddleboard (open); female paddleboard (open); SUP/paddleboard 2-person team; SUP/paddleboard 3-person team. Outrigger and surfski may participate.
Relay teams will share one board, but can use different paddles. Exchanges can take place at any time, but must be done in the water, at least 10 meters away from the escort boat.
Stand-up paddlers must complete the entire race standing up. Kneeling or sitting for more than one minute at a time will result in a time penalty or DNF, to be determined by race officials.
Drafting is not allowed.
No assistance from escort boats other than exchange of food or liquids. Any paddlers gaining forward assistance, lateral shelter or rest by way of the escort boat will be disqualified. This includes drafting behind/beside, paddling in the wake, holding onto or resting on the boat.
Escort boats should stay at least 50 ft away from paddlers at all times (with engines in neutral for relay exchanges). This might require a spotter to swim out to the paddler to exchange nutrition – plan accordingly.
WHAT IS A RELAY TEAM?
Two or three paddlers share an escort boat and a board. Paddlers jump in the water to switch, and can make exchanges whenever they want. This is a great way to participate if you want to share an escort boat, or if you’re not ready for a full 32 miles, but still want to experience the open water.
Each solo paddler and relay team is responsible for retaining an escort boat, and compliance with the following Safety Rules:
1. All competitors must wear a PFD and leash, and carry a signaling device (e.g., a whistle).
2. All competitors must wear the provided race jersey.
3. All SUP paddlers must use race or downwind-style boards. Surfboard shaped SUPs and SUPs less than 12’6” in length are not permitted.
4. Solo paddlers and teams must stay with their escort boat. If an escort boat has a mechanical problem, the paddler or team must stop and remain with his or her escort boat.
5. Escort boats must keep at least 10 meters from all paddlers.
6. Escort boats must have one spotter in addition to the captain.
7. Escort boats must assist any paddler or boat in distress.
8. No fishing from escort boats during the race.
9. Any paddler or team that withdraws before the finish must notify the race directors as instructed.
10. Any paddler or team that has not reached the outer harbour (roughly 28 miles) by the cutoff time may be asked to ride their escort boat to the finish. Cutoff time will be flexible based on conditions, but will be strictly enforced if enacted.