zaterdag 6 september 2014

Devils Extreme Race

Last weekend I (Bram) raced the Devils Extreme Race in Lipno Czech Republic. It was my first extreme kayak race, so it was a new (and awesome!) experience.

To begin with, the whole weekend was awesome! The qualification course was a 4min course with ‘Window’ in it. My race here went pretty good, lost some time at the end but it was still good as I finished 13th and the first 32 could go through to the ‘Headtohead’ system.

(Photo: Bram going on window section)

The ‘Headtohead’ was paddled on ‘The Stairs’ section. It’s a really cool section where you can paddle different lines and need to find the fastest one. I had to race against my bro Cole O’conner who had a pretty nice run, me on the other hand made some mistakes and came in after Cole. Couldn’t go trough to the next round so the individual race stopped here for me. But I was still stoked on the whole race and still pretty happy with my qualification run.

After my race I stayed to watch Mike Dawson take the win before Michal Buchtel and Sam Sutton.

(Photo: Ciaran Heurteau)

Sunday morning there was the teamrace on the full courselength. Which means we had to race +/- 14min and go down ‘Window’ , ‘Stairs’ And ‘Bloody hands’. I teamed up with 2 dutchies Martijn Van Tuijl and Robin Knuivers. We had a decent race, didn’t make any mistakes and came in third.

 (Teamrace with Bram Peeters, Robin Knuivers and Martijn Van Tuijl)

See you next year Devils Extreme Race!!

maandag 9 juni 2014

Entry Short Film of the Year Awards 2014

Some of you may already have noticed that we participate in the Short Film of the Year Awards 2014. So let us explain a few things...

What is this? Well euh it's a competition for the best kayak video of 2014, everybody can send multiple entries. The best six will be chosen to compete in the final based 50% on the judgement of a jury (kayaksession magazine) and 50% on the views of the video.

Why do we need your help!? Because 50% of our result is based on the total amount of views, so we need as many views as possible and that's were you can contribute in our succes!

The video is of our trip during the Springtime in the Pyrenees past april, we tried to show not only kayak but also the things around it. Good times with friends, lovely places and beautiful surroundings, nice weather and ofcourse positive vibrations.

In short check it out and help us a little!

Give thanks....



zaterdag 31 mei 2014

Springtime in the Pyrenees!

On the first weekend of april we had our selections in C2 for the Europeans, Worlds and World cups. The competition took place in Metz, its was during a french N1 competition. So a strong field of C2s was present including Klauss/Peche (overall winners of the world cup 2013, 4th place Olympics) and Labarelle/Peschier (European champions 2013).

The first day was a very technical course, especially in C2. But we managed to paddle it very well, qualifying for the finals, with our time in te first half of all the C2s. Although we had a good result our time was not good enough to be qualified for the Europeans... Only three of all the participating C2s would be in the time of our selections that day. We still believed that it was possible...we had one chance the next day. With a less difficult course we were optimistic, and started very fast. When al of a sudden we messed it up in the middle of the course, we don't know why...was it the fatigue or the lack of training the month before, maybe bad luck...
So this year we will not be able to compete at the Europeans in Vienna. No worries next year another chance and another year to train harder and better!

Directly after the competition we drove to Mimizan, where we stayed a couple of days for some surfing. The waves were really huge - sometimes up to three meters - meaning a lot of wipeouts and not an easy first time for Bram.

A few days later we drove to the Pyrenees to paddle L'Ouzom and Le gave du Brousset on one day! An epic start of our stay in the mountains.  The next river we paddled was a class IV piece of the rio Ara in Spain. Ending the day in Bergua near the rio Forcos ( paddled it last year) which hadn't enough water in it but still a nice place to spend the night.

Sort - home of whitewater kayak in the Pyrenees - was our next stop. Always nice to drive through a town and see a lot of kayaks on the roofs of cars, kayak-clothes drying outside, ... feeling the 'JAH' vibes.

It had rained non stop over there the last days. We heard that the rio Palomeras had a perfect level and decided to take a look and if ok, paddle it. The first drop was still covered by a glacier but the level was indeed substantial. Full of stoke we ended the day driving up to the Alto Noguera to paddle her the next day. When we woke up the weather was awesome and the waterlevel had risen to a nice high level, which meant an epic day of whitewater once again.

We also paddled the rio Veral (little bit of low flows) and ended our trip with some days of surfing in the Basque country!

Two weeks of sun, whitewater, mountains, ocean and waves.... Living the good life!

Up next:
- First week of july of to the french Alps
- Three weeks of awesomeness in the whitewater capital of Europe... NORWAY!
- September back to Sort

zondag 23 maart 2014

Radio silence

What it's almost April?! And we didn't update this blog since...euh long, a very loooooong time. Our sincere apologies for that, we really do.

The past months flew by very fast, a lot of training combined with a substantial amount of... the word you are expecting is whitewater, but we have to disappoint you. It was school that kept us busy, a lot!
And then 6 weeks ago Bram hurt is shoulder, which he has been recovering from during the last month. Now he's back in the boat but one month of absence is not the ideal preparation as you can imagine, especially with the qualifications just around the corner.

However we are still motivated to compete at the qualification race in Metz within two weeks time. This weekend we even went to Metz for some training (first time back in C2) and we were very pleased with the result.

Training went well so we still believe in a qualification for the european championships in Vienna.
After the competition in Metz we will drive through to Pau for a training-camp and of course some class V awesomeness. During this two weeks we will capture as many footage as possible to release a 'Jah' whitewater video!

We will keep you up to date of our results in Metz and in the meantime you can follow our Facebook page with more news and images....


maandag 30 december 2013

2013... a year full of experience

2013 was a great year for us! Paddled some fine rivers, saw a lot of beautiful places and met a few interesting people.

As we look back to the past year... paddling the 'Dora Baltea' in Italy with large floods maybe was our highlight of this year, a shame we didn't get any footage, it was INCREDIBLE!
Paddling rio Forcos maybe wasn't such a challenge because of the low flows (due to the late snowmelt) but what a beautiful experience it was. Definitively going back there when the water levels are higher.

For C2 in Goumois (our selection races), we paddled more technical and aggressive than last years race. Even with a high water level we managed to paddle better results.
That we couldn't start at the ICF world ranking race in Ivrea (Italy) was a little bit of a bummer. We were really motivated to compete there, but because of mechanical problems plans got changed.
We are happy to see that we are progressing really fast lately. Last two competitions were really fast and it feels good to see this progression. Keeps us motivated for next year!

This are only a few stories of the past year... too many to mention. We did edit a '2013 Reel' recapitulating our year in 4 minutes! Make sure you watch it here (HD) or just here...


Summarizing 2013 we had an epic year with lot's of whitewater and good progression in C2! Our plans for next year: just going BIGGER and BETTER! Already a few destinations selected where we want to go in 2014, more details will follow...

We will keep you up to date and we wish you a great 2014 with lot's of whitewater!!!

donderdag 29 augustus 2013

Between pills and books

Bram cruising around with a car full of drugs and Axel eating some books (exams) for a month now so we could use some distraction. We never finished our story of our trip to the Alps so let us bring back the good memories!

Last thing we said was something about hucking some waterfall in Italy and then going to Switzerland. Well.. we did! And we had a run on the Verzasca, a really beautiful river. Class II with awesome scenery alternated with some nice class V rapids! Also in the same beautiful scenery.

In Switzerland we chilled a lot at Lago Maggiore. And because we missed Belgium so much we decided to do some Belgian style flat water training without any gates in our slalom boat.
After this session we realized we didn't miss Belgium at all and we left to Ivrea!

Ivrea is a really nice place and the water is BIG! Especially when it's flooded. We immediately went on the water in our C2, and after a first descent we felt how powerful the water was. Our second descent we felt it even more... we swam. Yes, after a whole week of class V paddling without any problems we swam in our slalom boat. But although we swam, our visit to Ivrea was still nice. But the pizza and ice-cream did contribute to that.

In Italy we also paddled the Ayasse. A crazy river full of Class X sections. We didn't know the river, nor did we have a guidebook. But we just went for it and did a lot of scouting. And well... It was one epic day! Beautiful river! We found a 5 meter drop, some 4 meter slide/drop thing and lots of rapids!

We also went to the Chiusella, suposed to be another epic river. But again we didn't know the river and at the put in it seemed there was no water. We followed the river for 1km or something at it stayed really low water. Therefor we decided not to run the Chiusella and just hang out at the put in, which was at a super nice and beautiful little village.

Later in Bourg-saint Maurice we met some frenchies. They told us it's normal for the Chiusella to have a low water level. But yeah, we were at Bourg! We did a couple of session on the slalom course. But the best memories are those with our french friends. They took us to Doron de bozel. More a volume river, also new for us. We didn't know what to expect from the river and we also didn't know what to expect of us, our paddling skills in high volume waters. Especially because it was high water and there are some class V sections on the Doron. The first kilometer was pretty epic, huge holes and big waves! And it al worked out pretty fine!

A couple of days later they took us back to Italy to paddle the Dora Baltea. Arriving at Champex (put in) we saw that it was a really high water level. The first section we were going to do would/should be nice, not to hard but real fun. Once on the water everyone felt that their really was a LOT of water. We heard the rocks rolling over the riverbed.

The first half was really big! Super big waves, holes you really didn't want to get trapped in and fast as hell. Second part was a little bit easier, which made it possible to play around a bit and do some freewheels and trowing kick flips!

We were all super fired up after this descent and we decided to paddle the gorge d'Avise section on the Dora Baltea. This part is at low water level Class IV+, at normal water level it's V+. We entered the gorge with flood! This section is without any doubt the biggest river we ever paddled! Everyone was a little stressed because we knew if you were in trouble, you would be on your own. The river did not allow to just make a stop and rescue, nor was it possible to provide security from shore.

Once on the river we all were super focused. Once you've made a chose you were commited to paddle that line and you needed to go for it 100%. It's really hard to describe the power of the water and the greatness of everything on that river. But it was EPIC.

This river was kind off the end of our 3 week stay in the Alps. needless to say it was the perfect way to end it.

And oow, ofcourse we did capture some of the moments on film! To bad, Axel lost his helmet sow we could'nt film from waterview anymore. Not that bad you would say, but for that same reason we couldn't film the Doron nor the Dora Baltea...

But we did capture a lot of other things!! The Pitzbach, Verzasca, Ayasse, AND our first 30 footer!!

Don't forget to watch it in HD, Enjoy!


maandag 1 juli 2013

The Alps pt. 1

Living in the Alps for a week now! Finally got the chance to take a shower and sit down to write something down. We don't know where to start anymore so we will tell our stories at random... Or maybe... let's try to do it chronologically (nice memory test).

Our first stop was the 'Pitzbach' in Austria, a nice steep class V river with not to many eddies to stop and scout. The rain of the past few days made it a nice level to paddle... So lots of fun!

Next on the menu was the worldcup in Augsburg. Unfortunately not for participating but for cheering for Mathieu Doby and Ingo Kriesinger, our fellow Belgian team paddlers. We also had the chance to test some new boat models. Only one thing to say... Phoenix II from Vajda does a pretty good job!!

It was really nice to meet up again with some 'old colleagues'. Beeing in the circuit again felt really nice and brought back the good memories, that's why we made ourselves the promise to be back on track next year!

After Augsburg we went back to the Alps, Italy this time! We found a really nice waterfall from about 10 meters on the internet and decided to go and style it. Arriving in the middle of the night we couldn't see a thing so we went to sleep and woke up with an amazing view of the mountains. After a good walk through the woods we found these epic falls.

First a small drop of 3m, only a few meters after this the big one. 10 meters of free fall to land in a nice little pool, to end a small beautiful 5 meter drop.

Monday we went to the Ötz. We had our breakfast on the 'Wellerbrücke' were the Adidas Sickline has taken place since many years. The waterlevel was really high so we decided not to run it. Instead we had a nice run on the middle Ötz.

Ok but McDonalds is closing now so no more free wifi. Off to 'Der Schweiz'!!

See yah ;)

zondag 2 juni 2013

Peeters/Sleebus - 2013...So far

Our 2013 year so far!!
You will see some C2 sessions, some creeking and El Arnowe's most epic moment of his 2013 year!


maandag 20 mei 2013

First race of the Belgian season

A couple of weeks ago the first race of the Belgian season took place in 'Liège' -the only 'slalomcourse' we have in our little country- it's one of the three competitions we have in Belgium. Normally there are not a lot of participants to join us on the Ourthe but this year we were surprised how many showed up.

As it was a week after our selections in Goumois we were still in good shape and fired up to give it all! We must not forget to tell that in Belgium you can practice the racecourse a few hours before the start -what's not allowed in international competitions- but with the tought of gaining experience in every race we enter, we decided to 'trace' the course on the shore. Tracing is like studying the course and every movement you're going to make with your body and boat, but not studying like you do for exams or things like that.

The course was very difficult for C2, not that we don't like challenges. But sometimes it's a bit to far over the line. After all we managed to do well and at the end we came in first!  Meaning that we are one step closer to win the Belgian cup for this season. Talking about this cup, we did win it last year but more from that below...

Apart from the C2 we decided to race also in the K1 category, no worries we are not planning a comeback. Just something we like the do now and then as a reminder of the 'good old days'.

So about that Belgian cup, which is a ranking of the three competitions in Belgium awarded each first race of the year. We received this cup for our overall win in 2012 in the C2 category. It's our first win and we hope a lot more will come in the future!

What we been up to the last weeks? After Liège we continued training for the ICF world ranking in Ivrea. Beside that we are still editing our video which is not easy because there is not a lot of time when you train hard... Oh yeah there is also some schoolwork.

We will keep you informed about...euh everything, especially our video. So stay tuned and see ya!

vrijdag 26 april 2013

Past weeks...busy weeks

How did our selections go? That question will be answered in this post. So we recommend you to read the whole article...

But first of all we do like to talk to you about our trainingcamp in Pau. A french city close to the mighty 'Pirineos' and the atlantic ocean, ... some call it paradise. We combined slalom training with some creeking, but because of the long during winter in Europe there wasn't much water on the rivers in the mountains. Still we managed to paddle 'Le gave de Brousset' in France and 'Rio Forcos' in Spain.
To reach the put in for the 'Rio Forcos' we had to drive 40 minutes on a small road to 'Bergau' which is a lovely little village and from there we had to hike with our boats for about 30 minutes but it was all worth it, what a beautiful river!

After this, we went to Anglet near the atlantic ocean to catch some waves, but the weather was terrible. After all we decided to give it a try and went into the water. We have to admit that learning how to surf in a storm is not the easiest way...

The week after that (so last weekend) we had our selection races in Goumois. It was really cold again like most of 2013. We managed to paddle well, just not enough to be selected for 2013. But we have made a lot of progression and reached a good level for paddling C2 only one year, so we are still on our schedule for Rio 2016!

Click here for a short video on the swiss news about the belgian selections at Goumois

What will come up next?
  • End of june: creeking in the alps
  • 13/07 - 14/07: Icf World ranking Ivrea
  • September: trainingcamp Augsburg
  • 2/11 - 3/11: Lee Vally, London
And for now, we will be in editing mode for our video... Dropping soon!