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Looking Back and Preparing for 2011
Posted 25 May 2011, 4:40 pm NDT
Thanks to the support of our sponsors, the 2010 inaugural event of the Great Labrador Canoe Race was a tremendous success. A total of 38 two-person teams participated with many more spectators both at the start and the finish. The atmosphere and enthusiasm was infectious. All who participated, and many others since, indicated their interest to continue growing the Great Labrador Canoe Race.

Our objectives remain the same for 2011 and include providing a competitive and recreational event that would profile the historical role of the canoe in trapping, exploration and other travel throughout Labrador. The committee that formed in March of 2010 remains intact and has started to prepare for the 2nd annual event which promises broader appeal with both increased yet more involvement by families. Safety remains our number one priority and the important role played by the Goose Bay Ground Search and Rescue team will continue.

This year, The Great Labrador Canoe Race will consist of two events. For the more adventurous, a two-day Expedition Race will start on the morning of 27 August at Edward's Brook on the Churchill River. The two-person teams will race the first day to Muskrat Falls. The next morning on 28 August, these teams will complete the final portion of the Expedition Race to the finish line at Birch Island – a total distance of approximately 67 km. The second event will be a repeat of the Classic Race that occurred in 2010. This shorter route of approximately 10 km will allow for competitive and recreational canoeists on the morning of 28 August. This route will involve the same start at the Churchill River causeway, exciting portage and pit stop at 'Willow Island', and finally a combined finish line for both race events at Birch Island.

The organizing committee will offer opportunities for all (as long as one of the team members is at least 18 years of age) different age groups, male, female and mixed teams. All canoes will be timed.

Based on expressions of interest from last year, the committee is welcoming kayakers and depending on interest we will create categories accordingly.

As in 2010, cash prizes will be presented for the overall winners of each competitive event with an overall trophy (a specially designed paddle) awarded to the fastest time in each event. All participants will receive a specially designed medallion with other merchandise available as souvenirs. Volunteers will run the event, with safety support from the local Ground Search and Rescue Team. At the end of the day, the participants will enjoy a BBQ social at the finish line. All are welcome!