Another Gauley Race goes is in the history books, 22 years of racing on the Upper Gauley! It was a great day for racing again this year- cooler temps reminded us that the first day of fall was approaching. Cloudy skies gave way to sun which gave way to some liquid sunshine aka- rain. We had it all! As always it was great to see some familiar faces there, some of you have raced the Gauley many times. But this day would be different. Though some of the winners of past races were on hand there were a couple of new faces out there- and they were in fast boats. In the race, anything can happen of course, and today would be full of surprises. At Sweet’s Falls, the first boats to arrive were paddled by Robert Waldron who posted a time of 49:55 and then Justin Shockey with a time of 50:27! From the DC area, these kids are both 15 years old and paddled Wavehoppers. Not old enough to drive a car yet but able to drive a boat on the Gauley very fast! Congratulations to Robert and Justin! The first woman to arrive at Sweet’s was Anna Wagner from California. She posted a great time of 58:58 with Christine Warren just a minute behind her at 1:00:01. Great job Ladies!! Our Raft Teams also put down some great times- Team wing was first overall with a time of 1:04:48 and the first Women’s Team was Wet Dreams with a time of 1:08:03! This year we had 4 R1 boats, 3 R2 and a tandem open canoe on the river, making it a great race once again. Thanks and a tip of the helmet to Travis Cobb and his safety team for keeping an eye on us.
This event has also donated proceeds to the organization First Descents in honor and in memory of our friend Brian Jennings. First Descents Mission Statement is one that we are proud to be associated with, it reads “First Descents offers young adult cancer fighters and survivors a free outdoor adventure experience designed to empower them to climb, paddle and surf beyond their diagnosis, defy their cancer, reclaim their lives and connect with others doing the same.”
For more information about this organization go to: https://firstdescents.org/
Check out the complete results below and the pictures taken by Whitewater Photography at Pillow & Sweet’s. Some great pics in there!! Have a great fall paddling season and maybe we will see you on the river~
Check out Race Photos - taken @ Pillow Rock AND Sweet's Falls - Click HERE
Race Results - Click Here...