RICHLANDS, Va. — Duct tape and cardboard will float and the Great Richlands River Race gave several people the chance to prove that theory Aug. 3.
The second annual event drew competitors from local businesses and organizations and challenged them to create a boat and paddles from card board and duct tape. The Clinch River Kayak Club sponsored the competition and Club Spokesman Aaron McGlothlin said it gets people out of the house and gives them the chance to use their creativity.
While some races of this type allow Styrofoam, the rules for this race specify only cardboard and duct tape and the cardboard has to be strictly broken down boxes. The rules also do not allow paint or sealants to be used although colored duct tape was allowed. The challenge was to float 200 yards without sinking and do it faster than other competitors.
The competition drew nine teams this year from a variety of groups. They put their boats in the Clinch River at the Lavender Access Point at a time when the water was relatively low. This meant rocks and other obstacles could sink the boat.
The teams raced in heats and Kristen Yeakey piloted the winning craft for the second straight year. Joey Chapman won the award for most creative and Sherri Ramsey was judged to have the coolest boat.
Zyra Stacy and team TR had the fastest time. Arnette Cummins, with McDonalds of Claypool Hill had the honor of the fastest sinking ship.
Joey Chapman and Jaxon Shortt were the youngest river rats and Shortt had the smallest boat. Shrerrri Ramsey picked up a second award as the oldest swashbuckler.