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Come rain or shine...
26 September 2021

Dear WKC

Rain. Sun. Rain. Wind. Sun. The weather can't make it's mind up at the moment but we are sure trying to make the most of the patches of sunshine when we can! 

On Saturday, we had the joy of hosting the most recent Junior Development Squad day, run by the MRC, SRC and British Canoeing. It was great to see so many junior paddlers and different coaches mixing and learning from each other. Holly highlights some of the great things that happened over the day below and what more we can expect from those days in future.

While we were blessed with sun on the Saturday, our small group of explorers down in Sussex were not. However, they had a great time experiencing a different waterway and starting the winter mileage early while touring the Arun.

As the new Hasler 2021/22 season starts, we have a guide to the series and why it is important (and great fun!) to get racing! 

And finally, Pippa talks us through the happenings around the Pennywort Action Day on the River Wey and why it is important to continually wash, clean and dry our boats, particularly if we go downstream.

We also wish Greta luck as she departs for the final flat-water racing international of the season next week. Details of how to watch Greta and all the British team racing at the World Marathon Championships in Romania are below. 

As we move towards autumn and winter, the pace should slow slightly and we will be looking for different stories focusing on club/ member based activity, whether it is an interesting training session or group paddle or a historical memory of the club. If there is anything you would like us to focus on, get in touch. All contributions to the newsletter are appreciated. Keep your photos and stories coming to

Enjoy the water and daylight while it lasts!!

In this edition...


Junior Development Day at Wey
Tour d'Arun Paddle Report
What is a Hasler Race? Crash course

Pennywort Action Day Write-Up
Good luck Greta! World Marathon Championships
Club night - cook up a storm
Sign Up! to TeamApp for news, photos and chat
River Closure!

What’s on?

Junior Development Day at Wey


On Saturday 18th September, we were lucky enough to host the Junior Development Squad Day at the club to allow juniors and coaches from all over the county to train and share knowledge. 
The morning started with over 60 juniors getting on the water after a talk from Ivan Lawler about technique elements that should be watched out for and why. Several of our juniors were taking part in one of these days for the first time, as well as a load of our coaches taking the opportunity to learn from others. 
As the day warmed up, a long lunch break was followed by on-land crew boat drills, mostly with partners they had never paddled with before. Juniors were skipping, squatting and demonstrating what happens in crew boats when someone tries to push on without the other partner being prepared. They then got on the water and used the drills to get the boats to run better.
Every junior and coach I spoke to enjoyed the day and the learning that took place. The whole point of the JDS day's is to enable juniors from different clubs to train with each other as well as enabling coaches to work together and share ideas. They are a great way of developing flatwater racing nationally. 

We are looking to run another day at the beginning of November at another location so keep your eyes peeled for further information. 

Holly M

Tour d'Arun Report

On Sunday 19th September, just as the drizzle started, Pete G & Paul T, Ben F & Tom G, Honour L (k1) , Felix S & Ed S, Calum S & Steve S, Joe L & David HJ plonked themselves in boats at the RNLI station at Littlehampton and headed upstream.

It rained. Then it rained harder. Then it rained really hard. Then it just alternated between hard and really hard rain ad nauseum.

But paddling in the rain isn't so bad. Especially when there's no wind, disconcertingly warm water and a hefty push from the tide. In fact 13km/h (8mph) was easily sustainable for the majority of the paddle.

Highlights of the day included 14 crazy swimmers, seaweed all over the boats, a glimpse of Arundel Castle and Cathedral, a sea kayak hopping on the wash, a kingfisher, a miserable pub landlord (who wouldn't let Felix stretch his legs at the bank) and a large tree across the water. That last highlight gave Pete and Paul the opportunity to try and remove their rudder as they went over the top of the slightly submerged trunk. Thankfully they were not successful. Everyone else sensibly battled through the nettles to portage the obstacle.

5 more twisty turny kilometers to Pulborough making a total of 30km/20miles. Bananas and Ritz crackers never tasted so good (thanks Michele HJ) followed by Victoria sponge and coffee from The Corn Store Cafe.

A grand day out. Well done everyone, especially Pete for arranging.

p.s. Fish and chips at the Harbour Lights Cafe by the RNLI station in Littlehampton is fantastic!

What is the Hasler Series? A Crash Course

Marathon Canoeing is a fun, but challenging endurance outdoor sport, happening across the country on rivers, lakes and canals, a nature-rich environment you don’t usually get to see from roads or footpaths.

The Hasler Racing Series takes marathon racing and turns it into a inter-club competition for all. The racing system is based on ability divisions, so you can learn as you race against people of similar ability to you. As you progress, you’ll get promoted to higher divisions and ultimately face some of the best paddlers in the world (if you get quick enough!). 

There is a new season every year, starting September/October time after the Hasler Final. 

As a club, we have previously been Hasler Finals Champions. The latest being in 2019 when the last Hasler Final was hosted, so we are technically the defending champions! 

Over the next year, Hasler races will be taking place throughout the country with the following racing categories:
  • Division 1, 2 & 3: K1 and K2 racing over 12 miles - the fastest divisions where most of our international paddlers sit
  • Division 4, 5 & 6: K1 and K2 racing over 8 miles - lots of paddlers race in these categories
  • Division 7, 8, & 9: K1 and K2 racing over 4 miles 
  • Geoff Saunders U14 categories A, B & C: K1 racing over 2 miles 

There is a space for everyone to have a good race at your speed. 

The biggest thing about the Hasler Series is qualifying yourself and the club to the Hasler Final at the end of the season to defend our title. 
The country is divided up into regions and as Wey, we sit in the London & South East region, which also contains Royal, Richmond, Elmbridge, Addlestone, Tonbridge and Maidstone as well as a few more. To qualify to the Hasler final, we need to be within the top three clubs in our region all season to qualify. That means we ideally need as many paddlers as possible to racing all our London & SE region races. 
Individually, to qualify for the Hasler Final, you need to have completed at least 3 Hasler races. These do not have to be in region but if out of region, they will not count towards us as a club being able to attend. 

Our first in region Hasler race is next Sunday at Elmbridge. Details are below.

To enter any Hasler race, you need to visit the race entries system and enter yourself. If you have any questions, Paul Dimmock, our marathon team leader, will be able to answer. He can be found at the email As well as Paul, your group lead should be able to answer questions too. 

Pennywort Action Day!

This Saturday (25th September), a motley crew from Wey Kayak club - Petrina, Sheetal, Mo , Pip and Clive - all joined the British Canoeing Volunteer day to remove the Pennywort between Papercourt lock and New Haw lock on the River Wey to remove the Pennywort (or as much as we could in a day !)

When we arrived the river was completely blocked with pennywort so we knew we had our work cut out for us

We had superb communication from Ben at BC who organised the 100 or so volunteers from all ranges of clubs and river users from all over the country :some people had travelled from Wiltshire, Wales and Leeds to help out for the day !!!

We split into pre arranged working parties at staggered points down the river to combat the pennywort  : some on craft on river cutting dragging and loading up boats or SUPS with Pennywort and some on the  bank with rakes to haul in the heavy load of weeds and plant mass onto waiting tarpaulins . It was really good physical work and great camaraderie as we   negotiated the swamp like terrain and encountered little stowaways like frogs, leeches and shrimps who swam back into the swirling waters .

We met so many river users from far and wide and Ditton SUP club gave out spare craft to use so that was perfect as we could get right across the river to cut back the plant and load up our crafts and deliver to the bank side crew

The groups devised cunning ways of cutting away “islands” and then escorting the island as a big barge would travel past so we had lots of very grateful spectators who were able to continue their journey 

Fav moment for me was helping to push a Pennywort island back to bankside with a fab group one of the guys who looked like Kenny Rogers and we all sang “islands in the stream “ 

After a very rewarding day -we all agreed the best outcome was the sense of doing something for our environment and also the amazing amount of pennywort that was removed by everyone , although a dent in the mass of plantlife there is  still more work to be done - good news is you can paddle downstream now from papercourt lock without getting stuck 

Ben who is an environmental officer for BC strongly advised us all to wash and clean our craft and equipment every visit to an area of the river with pennywort as it’s an invasive species and spreads and grows so quickly and is transported on our boats up and downstream 

There will be another Pennywort clearing day soon as still much to clear so will keep you informed of the date and hope to see lots of Wey Kayak club there to enjoy the well being feeling of volunteering on the river for the environment 

Photos of before and after our clearance day are being published in the BC website . Here are a few we took on the day 

Happy paddling

Pip, Petrina, Sheetal, Mo and Clive from the adult improvers group 🐸

Good Luck Greta!

Greta will be taking to the water in Romania next week to take on the World Canoe Marathon World Championships along with the rest of the British team. 

We wish Greta all the luck and we look forward to cheering you on through the computer screen as well as hearing all about it when you get back.

If you wish you watch Greta and the rest of team race, you can find the livestream at 

Greta will be racing in the Junior Women's K2 with Klara J on Friday 1st October at 06:45am. 

Keep up to date with the latest news, photos, events and chat!

TeamApp is for ALL members, adults and juniors and parents/carers of junior members


Step by Step - how to get TeamApp

  1. Download the free TeamApp on to your phone via If you don’t want to use a phone app, you can access it using a browser, but you won’t get the notifications when there are new messages
  2. Open the app and choose Log in or Sign Up, enter an email address and complete your registration.
  3. It's a good idea to set up a password. In Team App, from Settings (normally a cog in the top right corner in the main Memberships screen)
  4. "Find your Team / Club" choosing WeyKayakClub, and then go to Settings and Access Groups and choose Junior Beginners/Rovers etc etc.

You will now be able to see information under Galleries, Chat and News. Please join in the Chat groups so that you can get the latest updates on what's happening.

There is also a website version which updates dynamically with the app: 

We hope you enjoy your TeamApp experience!

Cook up a storm

Sign up! Catering Volunteers


Club night, or Saturday bacon butties would not be possible without our amazing volunteers.  It is a great way to contribute back to the club, whilst getting to know more members (in a dry and warm setting!).  We have volunteers for the next two weeks - if no one comes forward there will be no dinner! 

If anyone (paddler or parent) would be willing to help in the club kitchens on either a Saturday morning 11am -1pm or Thursday evening please sign up via TeamApp - go to the Event - select a date and then press on the person icon (duty roster) and assign yourself to the main or pudding!    To find out more, or sign up if you are not yet on Team App, pop us an email at


River Closure - Early Notice!

As we move into winter, the National Trust and GBC will be using the quieter season to complete some work on the river and bridges. We have already had notice of the following closures for you to take note of:

- Monday 25th to Friday 29th October between Millmead Lock and Dapdune Wharf (town section) 

What's On....

As always lots going in and around the club in the next month or so - for events further out check out TeamApp Events

29th September
Sprint Racing Committee ACM at 8pm - information below
1st October
Plastic Boat Pool Sessions start - information on Teamapp in the events section and below (Only a few more places remaining in Session 1!)
3rd October
Elmbridge Hasler - first of the London & SE region 2021/22 Hasler races - let Group Leads know by 26th Sept.
16th October
Royal Paddle Challenge - further details below.
23rd - 24th October
National 5k Championships - Potential Road trip to Strathclyde -k1,k2 and k4 events
31st October
Hare & Hounds (WKC) - the first of the 5 race series on home water
21st November
Hare & Hounds (WKC) - the second of the 5 race series on home water
5th December
Hare & Hounds (WKC) - the third of the 5 race series on home water
11th December
Wey Kayak Club Christmas Party

Elmbridge Hasler

Sunday 3rd October

The first Hasler race in our region (London & South East)
Win points for the club and yourself to gain entry in the Halser final next September!

An out and back course on the River Thames. Two lock portages over rollers & one false portage for Div 1,3 (2). The whole race can be followed along riverside footpaths and towpath.

Div 7,8,9 – K1 and K2 No Portages
Div 10 – K1 No Portages
Div 4,5,6 -K1 and 4,5,6 K2 2 Portages
Div 1,2,3 -K1 and 2,3, K2 3(2) Portages

Div. 7,8, 9 -K1 and 7,8,9- K2 (4 miles)
Div 10-K1
(if already classified in Div 8 you may not paddle Div 10) 10.00 BRIEFING
10.30 START

Div 4,5 & 6 K1 and K2 (8 miles)
Div. 1, 2 & 3 K1 and 2,3 K2 (12 miles)
12.45 START

ENTRY FEES: £10 Seniors & Juniors (£15 entry on the day)
£5 Div10- new Racing Class for Under12’s
If you are already classified in Div 9 or above you may not enter Div10 & cost is the normal fee of £10 for entry.

CLOSING DATE: Thursday Sept 30th

PRIZES: For the first three places in all classes where there are five or more entries.

REFRESHMENTS: Will be on sale throughout

ENTRIES: A club entry will be made, please let your Group Lead, or Paul Dimmock know by 26th Sept

Over five weeks in October (1st October-29th October), we are running plastic boat skill sessions, coached by Joe Langham, to give more members the chance to develop their boat handling skills and have a bit of fun. They will be hosted at Lord Wandsworth College (RG29 1TB).

Skills learned over the five weeks will include rolling as well as many more and the potential to play canoe polo too.

Cost for the five weeks worth of sessions will be £70. 16 places over two sessions are available on first come first served basis. Session 1 starts at 6:00pm and finishes at 07:30pm. Session 2 starts at 07:45pm and finishes at 9:15pm. All equipment is provided.

Only a few more places remaining in session 1.

Sign-up by emailing as soon as possible.

Royal Paddling Challenge

Entries via

Sprint Racing Committee ACM

The Sprint Racing ACM is this Wednesday 29th September @ 20.00 and you are invited. The Sprint Racing Committee (SRC) is run entirely by volunteers and its there to represent and develop projects for the benefit of everyone in our sport. So this meeting is for you. Your sprint team leader has received an invite to register to vote for your club but everyone is welcome. To register click below before Sunday 20.00:

National 5K Championships

Entries here.



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