31 May, 2022

Rushing success for river challenge

THE Barron River’s annual paddle race has come to a conclusion over the weekend with visitors claiming both the 20km and 50km section races of the Barron River Challenge.

Rushing success for river challenge - feature photo

The Barron River Challenge is run on the last weekend in May each year down the Barron River from the John Doyle bridge in Mareeba to Kuranda beach via Bilwon. 

Steve McLay from the Sunshine Coast, with a time of 1 hour 55 mins 30 seconds, took line honours in front of local school teacher Brad Weaver (1 hour 58 mins 22 seconds) and Atherton farmer Tony Marnane (1 hour 58 mins 42 seconds). 

In fourth place, with a time of exactly two hours for the short race to Bilwon, was Mareeba’s David Lep who received a special trophy for 10th Barron River Challenge race. 

Places on the podium in the female outright division went to Mareeba’s Amy Sellers in 2 hours 3 mins 52 seconds, Hayley Mlikota from Cairns (2 hours 16 mins 40 seconds) and first-time local competitor, Cordula Kath in 2 hours 18 mins 53 seconds. 

The 52 km Barron River Challenge 50 event concluded on the riverbank in Kuranda where spectators witnessed Brett Mc- Donald from Perth break the race record set in 2014 by almost 3 minutes to claim ‘The Barron’ title.

 Podium positions were Mc- Donald in 3 hours 52 seconds 46 seconds, followed by Mareeba local John van Ryt (4 hours 5 mins 24 seconds) and David Ahmed from Cairns (4 hours 19 mins 22 seconds). 

A new canoe relay race between Mareeba and Bilwon is scheduled for 2023, further information can be acquired through the Tinaroo Canoe Club.


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