Race Rules

Race Rules

1. Paddlers are to keep within the channel markers, keeping the green on the right and red on the left when paddling upstream (from the start). The reverse applies on the way back. Paddlers who cut inside the channel markers will be disqualified. Keep to the right of the channel where possible, and pass other craft on the right, especially paddlers coming back down the river from the top turns. All turns will be made in an anticlockwise direction.

2. ‘The Slot’, for those who are aware of it, is out of bounds for this event.

***Paddling up ‘the slot’ will result in disqualification***

Larger vessels cannot search for lost paddlers there.

3. Paddlers not meeting minimum time/progress requirements for their selected distances will be directed to turn around, and must do so immediately when advised by the safety boat captain(s) or any other official.

Minimum time/progress for all paddlers will be measured as follows:

47km Distance
8:00am start must reach Engels Reach Wharf (13.5km) before 09:45am
9:00am (8.55) start must reach Engels Reach Wharf (13.5km) before 10:30am

27km Distance
10:00am (9.55) start must reach the 12km course turn buoy at Tamboi Queen Jetty before 11:00am
11:00am start must reach the 12km course turn buoy at Tamboi Queen Jetty before 11:45am

12km Distance
11.00am start for all paddlers, no time restrictions

4. Sweep Boat
The Safety Boat located at the 47km turn point will leave its station and start to return to the finish line at 12:00 midday. Paddlers who have not reached the 47km course turn point by this time will be turned around by this safety boat, which will also act as the sweep and will signify that the course has been closed behind it.
Instructions from race officials and/or safety boat captains must be complied with at all times. Paddlers failing to follow instructions given will be disqualified.

5. THE FINISH LINE is ONLY OPEN from 12.30pm onwards. (except for 12km and late starting, very fast paddlers). Choose your start time carefully. 27 & 47km Paddlers finishing before this time will be given an automatic 12.30pm finish.

6. Assisting other paddlers.
Paddlers must render assistance to other paddlers in need. Time will be credited to paddlers providing assistance. This is a gruelling race that will test many paddlers who have not done this distance unsupported and without stopping. If you see a paddler in the water, or even stopped at the riverbank, please check that they are OK.

7. All craft will be checked for compliance at the Entry Chute. Any paddler(s) found without the minimum requirements for the entered distance will not be passed through the Entry Chute and will not start the race until compliant.

8. Paddlers must obey the directions of the safety boat captain(s) at all times.

9. If paddlers are directed to turn around short of any turn they must do so immediately.

10. If a red flag is displayed by a race official anywhere along the course, this will indicate the race has been stopped and paddlers should proceed directly to the nearest official and enquire of the reason and what steps they should take to get to safety.

11. Paddlers must carry the required compulsory equipment for their chosen distance, and wear their lifejacket while on the water.

12. A paddlecraft is a powered vessel, and so paddlers are prohibited by law from consuming alcohol while paddling; they must have a zero blood alcohol level at all times. Paddlers found contravening this will be placing the future of the event in jeopardy, and so will be instantly disqualified.

13. Paddlers must not stop along the course unless they are unable to continue and require assistance, except for the landing area at the Tamboy Turn of the 47km event.

The Start/Finish Area


Parking is plentiful near Anzac Park. However, council have not permitted any parking of vehicles adjacent to Anzac Park; this is to be a dedicated boat drop-off zone, and emergency vehicle access point, and will be marked accordingly. It is also a turning area for the Fire Brigade opposite the park.

Please drop your boat promptly and then move your vehicle away. There will be allocated parking spaces for Kayak trailers in the carpark near the boat ramp. Please do not park cars in these allocated spaces, nor in the carpark of Mumms Restaurant. If you upset the restaurant, you won’t get your fish’n’chips!

Use of Anzac Park.

Part of the conditions imposed by local council, who support the running of this event, are that we leave the park as we found it, and take away our rubbish. Please assist by taking your rubbish with you, if necessary in the rubbish bags provided. We are not permitted to use the park rubbish bins for this event.

There is NO GLASS allowed in Anzac Park

Disabled toilets are located across the road at the swimming pool shed with additional portaloos in the carpark

Race Briefings

Separate race briefings will be held for each race start, 45 minutes prior to that start, and adjacent to the RMS building. All paddlers must attend their event race briefing.

Entry to the Water

Entry chute will be open at the conclusion of each race briefing. All participants and boats will be checked for compliance before entering the water.

It is the responsibility of all paddlers to have themselves and their craft pass through the entry chute. Failure to do so will render you a ‘Did Not Start’ (DNS) as your number will not be recorded.
For safety reasons, paddlers not on the water and in the marshalling area 5 minutes before their start, will be held back at the entry chute till their race has started.

The Starts & Starting Line

The starts will be in line with the the Paddle NSW timing tent and the Anzac Memorial flagpole. The warm-up area is downstream, between the Maritime Services Jetty and the Hawks Nest Bridge. Please assist the starters and all paddlers by not paddling upstream of the start prior to any of the race starts.

Three (3) minutes before all race starts, an announcement will be made over the public address system. Paddlers are to align themselves with the starter at the Maritime Services Jetty and the Yellow Tide Marker, and move up to the start line with the starter (as per Hawkesbury Canoe Classic method). When satisfactorily aligned, the starter will indicate the start with a call of ready, go.

The Finish

The finish line is at the same location as the start line, adjacent to the timing tent. Paddlers are requested to paddle close to the bank to assist timing staff. Paddlers are required to stay downstream of the finish line once they have finished.

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