73 teams already signed up for 14th annual “Race to the Midnight Sun”

WHITEHORSE, YUKON – There are two weeks left before the May 15 registration deadline for the 14th annual Yukon River Quest, which will be held June 27 to July 1, 2012. To date, 73 teams from a dozen countries have registered.

The 715-­‐kilometer (448-­‐mile) wilderness adventure paddling race is held on the Yukon River from Whitehorse to Dawson City in Canada’s Yukon Territory. Held during the last week of June, the YRQ is known as the “Race to the Midnight Sun”. Except for two mandatory rest stops, paddlers race round-­‐the-­‐clock, as the sky never gets dark.

Online entry forms are available. Entry fees are $850 (CAD) for tandem canoes and kayaks, $475 for solo canoes and kayaks, and $250 per person for voyageur canoe teams of six or more paddlers.

The overall limit is 100 canoe and kayak teams, which includes a limit of 30 solo teams. There are spots open in all categories. To date there are 6 solo canoes, 18 solo kayaks, 22 tandem canoes, 11 tandem kayaks, and 16 voyageur canoes. Currently about 200 paddlers are registered, hailing from Austria, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Finland, Germany, Great Britain, Israel, Latvia, Norway, South Africa, and the United States. Teams are reminded that they must have their SPOT devices registered as well. These devices will be mounted on top of their boats and activated for tracking, which will allow teams to be able to be followed during the race from links on the Yukon River Quest website and Facebook page. SPOT instructions are posted on the race website.

The 2012 race purse will be $36,500 (CAD) if a full roster of 100 teams is registered by the May 15 deadline. Otherwise the purse is adjusted downward on a percentage basis.

There are overall cash prizes for each class – tandem canoe, tandem kayak, solos, and voyageur canoes – as well as prizes for the top three in each division. There also are $500 cash prizes for the top all-­‐Yukon canoe and kayak teams, and the top First Nations team. Several special awards are also donated by Yukon sponsors. Teams must finish the YRQ in 55 hours to receive prize money, but many do the race for the personal satisfaction of staking their claim to a coveted finisher pin in historic Dawson City.

The race is supported by 200 volunteers. To see where volunteers are needed, click the link on the website, email, or call the race office at 867‐333-­5628. The race is especially in need of boats for safety on Lake Laberge and possibly downriver. Fuel is paid for.

The race is organized by the Yukon River Marathon Paddling Association, based in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada. Major logo-­‐level sponsors are the Whitehorse Star, Kanoe People, Air North,, Pepsi–Aquafina, Up North Adventures, and Gold Trail Jewellers.

Many small businesses support the race by sponsoring paddler bibs that are worn all the way to Dawson. A bib form is up on the website and can be requested, along with sponsorship packages, by emailing Bib forms are due June 1.

Carl Rumscheidt, president: or 867-­667‐5289 or 867-­332‐5500.
Jeff Brady, media relations: or 907-973-­2354.Media packets will be sent out later this month.
If you are interested in covering the race, contact Jeff.