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Hey guys, it is Andy here. Guess what, I’ve been to North Fork Championship in June and it was amazing. Lucky me, I was with my friend Janosch Plathner there and could share this amazing experience with him. But first, what is the North Fork Championship? The North Fork Championship is a competition made to expose the talent of the best kayakers in the world on an amazing section of whitewater. This year, paddlers from all over the world came together to fight for the title of King and Queen of the North Fork World Championship.

Therefore, we started this trip like every other trip…wrapping up our stuff and preparing us with food for the long journey in America. Immediately, we started to explore the rivers there. We decided to do some paddling on rivers like the Truss, Spirit Falls, Golden Canyon and on the South Salmon. One week before the Championship started, Janosch and I drove to the North Fork of the Payette River and did some training, get to know the lines and tricky sections. The Downriver sprint through S Turn Rapid was our qualification, which was good to go. But the Final section, the Jacob’s Ladder was “hell on earth”. Every time I paddled down this section, I was super nervous. But first we have to make it into the finals, which is definitely not easy. After a succesfull qualification, both of us were allowed to race in the Semi Finals, where only the top 40 men can start. In North Fork Semi Finals the athletes compete 1st place vs. 40th place, and 2nd place vs. 39th etc. Winners will be make it to the FINALS on Jacob’s Ladder.

Both of us did it, both of us were in the Finals! From now on, we knew that we were at the Top 20. You cannot imagine, what an enormous happiness we felt in this moment. I was so glad and looked forward to the next day – the final day. The best kayakers in the World will be launching off the NFC Red Bull Ramp into Jacob’s Ladder and Golf Course Rapids to compete for the title of World Champion and the King and Queen of the North Fork Championship! And I was one of them! It was a very special feeling to slide down the ramp right into the finals. The gates were put super difficult that even the best kayakers had trouble to catch all of them. Luckily, I had a really amazing run and
could catch all of them and put the pedal to the metal. Finally, I was ranged at the 6th place, which I’m super stoked and proud about. Congrats also to Janosch, who was ranged at the 17 th place! Great job man!

After the race has ended, many athletes joined in a paddle down to Banks before heading into Crouch to celebrate the Kings and Queens of the World Championship. Congratulations to Dane Jackson and Marianne Saether! After the big party we started to drive home, both of us with a big smile on our faces and a big mass of peanuts- at least my humble self 😉

– Andy Brunner