Paddlers ready for regatta
OUTRIGGER Whitsunday paddlers are chomping at the bit ahead of the NQ Zone Regatta to be held on their home turf this weekend.
Whitsunday paddlers will be part of a 300 competitor strong field that compete in Airlie Beach for the first North Queensland Grand Prix Regatta of the year.
Vice-president Terry Kemp said all 36 Whitsunday outriggers were ready and raring to go head to head with competitors from Cairns in the north to Yeppoon in the south.
“Being the first, it attracts a lot of competitors,” he said.
“It's going to be a good turn out.”
Kemp said competitors coming from northern clubs wouldn't have a problem finding a canoe to race in, in Airlie.
“Due to the calamity up north, they had lots of damaged canoes,” he said.
“But we have canoes here that they can use.”
Taking place in the waters off Airlie Beach, in front of the Lagoon, will be OC1, OC2, OC6, marathon and even a stand-up paddling race for the very first time.
The action on Saturday will start from 6.30am and races are expected to be finished by 4pm.
The presentation will then be held at Capers from 7pm that night.
Kemp urged the entire community to head along to the Airlie Beach foreshore to see the outriggers in action.
“It's the first sporting event on the calendar for the area,” he said.
“The main thing is, we want everyone to enjoy themselves and have a good regatta with good attendance.”