At the start of the 2023 season the International Canoe Federation asked leading kayak manufacturers from around the world to provide prototypes of kayak cross boats which could be used for international competition.

The ICF agreed to retain the boats, and to use them as part of the kayak cross development program.

A total of 20 boats were transported with the help of ICF partner, Prowave, to the two ICF slalom world championships held in 2023 – the junior and U23 titles in Krakow, Poland, and the senior titles in London, England.

The boats were used on a daily basis by participants in the ICF talent identification program. The advantage of the new kayaks included that they were much easier to use for inexperienced paddlers. Beginners could quickly build confidence to the stage where they were able to start in a kayak cross competition by the end of the TIP camp.

The boats were also attractive because;

  • The new design allowed more technical, fast and impressive move in kayak cross
  • Easier than a slalom boat but specific enough to be used as a slalom beginner boat
  • Easy to transport due to the short length compared to classic slalom
  • safe and sustainable
  • Comfortable

Of the initial 20 boats, four have been provided to the clubs which stored the kayaks or hosted the development camps during the 2023 season. The rest have been taken to the Prowave storing centre in Germany for winter, and will then be taken to next year’s TIP development camp at the 2023 ICF Junior and U23 slalom world championships in Liptovsky Mikulas.

It’s expected the kayaks will be used in other competitions and development camps during the season.

The ICF thanks the following providers who accepted the challenge of being part  of this program in a restricted timeframe; Pyranha, RTM, Lettman, Spade, Exo, Soul, Zet, Prijon, Dragorossi and Exo.

The generosity shown by these companies has allowed the ICF to provide further development for kayak cross, and has opened the door for athletes from all over the world to learn the discipline.

Kayak Cross