The annual WetDashe Race, shown here from 2019, is taking a virtual approach to raising funds for men’s health this year. (Black Press Media file photo)

The annual WetDashe Race, shown here from 2019, is taking a virtual approach to raising funds for men’s health this year. (Black Press Media file photo)

Victoria’s WetDashe paddling race makes a virtual splash this year

Annual outrigger race draws international attention

Organizers of the WetDashe outrigger canoe race have found an innovative way to keep this year’s event afloat, despite the murky waters caused by COVID-19.

“We found a safe way to hold a fun annual fundraiser for men’s health in the middle of a pandemic,” race director Erik Ages said in a media release. “How? We made everyone their own race official. WetDashe 2020 contestants run their own races within their own ‘bubbles’ and in their own regions.”

The interest in participating has surprised organizers so far, with athletes from around the world and teams of all ages and abilities registering, noted Ages, who is also general manager of the Fairway Gorge Paddling Club. (FGPC)

Many paddling crews around the world are currently training in cohort crews, with small groups of athletes working in small pods to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19, he said. Registrants for this year’s event so far include athletes from across B.C., Alberta, Ontario, California and Australia.

“FGPC’s Victoria coaches, staff, facility and docks have anticipated the health concerns of our members and athletes,” Ages noted. “Their health priorities are the same as other athletes around the world. They want to maintain their health and fitness while minimizing risk and respecting the health professionals and essential workers in their communities.”

Racers will select a three-kilometre out and back loop on a waterway of their choice and run that course four times or more during the month of November. Race officials then take an average of the four fastest times to determine the winners.

The competition is open to solo outrigger canoeists, six-person outrigger canoes and V12 crews, which consist of two six-person outrigger canoes lashed together with spars.

There’s also an incentive where competitors can shave one second off of their time for every $10 raised for the BC Cancer Foundation’s WetDashe Men’s Health campaign. Proceeds will support an innovative prostate cancer diagnostic tool under development at the agency.

“Based on registration to date, we know that WetDashe race shirts will be worn by participants of this unique event around the world,” Ages said. “We expect the 2020 WetDashe shirt to become a collector’s item.”

Register for the event at fgpaddle.com.

rick.stiebel@goldstreamgazette.com


 

Do you have a story tip? Email: vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A family of ducks that lives near Saanich Municipal Hall recently welcomed 11 ducklings and took them for a swim in the koi pond outside the offices. (District of Saanich/Twitter)
Pair of ducks make Saanich Municipal Hall a nursery for 11 hatchlings

Family of ducks spent time in koi pond before heading down to Swan Lake

Habitat Acquisition Trust has received provincial funding to help restore Garry oak ecosystems on southern Vancouver Island. (Photo by Jeremy da Silva)
Central Saanich park among sites for local Garry oak restoration projects

Habitat Acquisition Trust received $140,000 in funding for 12 projects

Architect’s rendering of the 7 Erskine Lane development, showing the view from the east and south. (VDA Architecture Ltd. image)
View Royal green-lights residential development on Erskine Lane

First of two developments near Victoria General Hospital will provide 71 housing units

With the help of a $110,000 federal grant, Saanich will be adding 22 new EV chargers for its municipal fleet to reduce emissions from district operations. (Black Press Media file photo)
Saanich adds 22 new EV chargers for municipal fleet to reduce corporate emissions

Federal grant adds $110,000 jolt to project, installation to be completed fall 2022

Andrew Swanson was arrested Wednesday after he was wanted for an alleged choking assault and for obstructing police. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Victoria police arrest Andrew Swanson on warrants for alleged choking assault, obstruction

A member of the public spotted Swanson and called 911 before police came and made the arrest

Protesters attempt to stop clear-cutting of old-growth trees in Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew. (Will O’Connell photo)
VIDEO: Workers, activists clash at site of Vancouver Island logging operation

Forest license holders asking for independent investigation into incident

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of May 4

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(Black Press Media file photo)
POLL: Do you plan to travel on the Victoria Day long weekend?

It’s the unofficial start to the summer season. A time of barbecues,… Continue reading

A worker rides a bike at a B.C. Hydro substation in Vancouver, on Friday, April 16, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
BC Hydro report raises safety concerns as pandemic prompts jump in yard work

Incidents involving weekend tree trimmers, gardeners and landscapers have risen 30% since the pandemic hit

Starting Tuesday, May 11, B.C. adults born in 1981 and earlier will be able to register for a vaccine dose. (Haley Ritchie/Black Press Media)
BC adults 40+ eligible to book COVID-19 vaccinations next week

Starting Tuesday, people born in 1981 and earlier will be able to schedule their inoculation against the virus

Parks Canada and Tla-o-qui-aht Tribal Parks dig the washed up Princess M out from sand along the south shore of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. (Nora O’Malley photo)
Rescue attempt costs man his boat off Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

Coast Guard response questioned after volunteer responder’s speedboat capsizes in heavy swells

Road sign on Highway 1 west of Hope warns drivers of COVID-19 essential travel road checks on the highways into the B.C. Interior. (Jessica Peters/Chilliwack Progress)
B.C. residents want travel checks at Alberta border, MLA says

Police road checks in place at highways out of Vancouver area

People line up for COVID-19 vaccination at a drop-in clinic at Cloverdale Recreation Centre on Wednesday, April 27, 2021. Public health officials have focused efforts on the Fraser Health region. (Aaron Hinks/Peace Arch News)
B.C. reports 1st vaccine-induced blood clot; 684 new COVID cases Thursday

Two million vaccine doses reached, hospital cases down

Most Read