The 2020 Breede River Canoe Marathon has joined the long list of events that have been forced into cancellation by the Covid-19 lockdown but the organisers have stepped in to run a new drive aimed at keeping the passion for paddling on the Breede River alive.
“The decision to cancel the 2020 Breede was out of our hands, and as the region and the country wrestles with the pandemic, we remain fully supportive of the regulations put in place to deal with the virus,” said race organising committee head Richard Allen.
“Canoeing South Africa has done a superb job in getting paddlers safely back onto the water, albeit without the popular major event, and the canoeing community has welcomed this as a way of staying positive and active during the lockdown.
“While we can’t organise races, we can still paddle on Breede, so we are encouraging paddlers to enjoy the river when it is full from rains at this time of year,” he said.
The Breede organising committee will be running a social promotion driven through it’s Facebook group encouraging paddlers in any form of craft, from K1s, K2s and K3s to SUPs, rafts and any other paddle craft, to take to the waters of the Breede during August and September and post photos and videos of their experiences online.
A variety of prizes will be available for the best entries, including free entries to the 2021 Breede Marathon.
“This is not competitive in any way at all,” Allen stressed. “No times will be taken, and no places or medals will be awarded. This is just about keeping our passion for paddling on this unique stretch of water alive so that we can bounce back next year with a really memorable Breede.”
He added that the Nurture a Novice programme that Milnerton Canoe Club has run for the last few years will remain a top priority and he urged paddlers to take advantage of this opportunity to introduce a newcomer to paddling on the Breede, added that the competition judges would be looking for submissions that feature Breede novices.