It was Gerd’s day. With top five finishes over the last three years at the North Fork Championships, this year Gerd Serrasolses finally took first, and the $5,000 prize, for his best run of 2 minutes, 5.5 seconds, in the coveted Jake’s Race. Dane Jackson took second and $2,000 at 2:06:29, followed by Isaac Levinson in third at 2:07:42, pocketing a cool grand.
It was an exciting culmination to this year’s fourth carnation of the extreme race, held on Idaho’s treacherous North Fork Payette. Sponsored by the likes of Idaho Tourism, Sweet, NRS, GoPro, Teva, Dagger, Payette Brewing Co., Kayak Session and more, the whitewater-filled weekend started on Thursday, with 80 racers participating in the Expert Race time-trial sprint from Juicer through Cruncher on the run’s lower section. The popular Melt Awards followed in Boise at the Egyptian Theatre, where viewers watched whitewater films from such production houses as Substantial Media House, River Roots, Nomade Media House, and Serrasolses Brothers Productions; as well as still shots from photographers such as Mike Leeds, Tait Trautman, John Webster and Jasper Gibson. Mountain Mind Collective won Best Film with their trailer for “For the Love” and Eric Parker won Best Photo with his shot of Keyhole Falls in British Columbia. The event also awarded wildcard slots for the Jacob’s Ladder slalom race.
Day two saw a Boater-X race through S-Turn rapid, with France’s Eric Deguil taking first for his third year in a row, with Dane Jackson in second, and Alec Voorhees in third.
On Saturday came the coveted Giant Slalom Elite Division race down Jacob’s Ladder through Golf Course, on a new catch-that-eddy-if-you-can course set by organizers James and Regan Byrd. Perhaps the crown jewel Class V race in the country, Serrasolses finally got the monkey off his back with the win. Aniol Serrasolses took fourth, and local paddler Alec Voorhees fifth. Nouria Newman, the second-ever female to compete in the Jake’s Race, was the first to notch a top 10 finish, taking eighth. The top 10 paddlers get an automatic invitation to compete next year.
From there, it was onto the Stoke Float to Banks and then to a party as raging as the river in Crouch, Idaho, for the awards festivities.
Results: Top 5
1, Gerd Serrasolses.
2, Dane Jackson.
3, Isaac Levinson.
4, Aniol Serrasolses.
5, Alec Voorhees.
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