New sport alert: extreme duck racing

Published: July 17, 2020

Yellow rubber duck sitting on railing over river with text "Extreme Duck Racing" under it. Cabin Radio / cabinradio.ca

The world of sports has largely ground to a halt during the pandemic, but one sport is thriving: extreme duck racing. Yup, you read that correctly. Extreme. Duck. Racing. If you aren’t familiar with this event it’s actually an annual event that takes place in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. 

300 yellow rubber ducks racing to the finish line at the Cameron Falls in Yellowknife Northwest Territories
300 ducks approaching the finish line but there is one clear winner.

Normally this is a one-race event that is open to the public to watch. This year is different though, to prevent a social gathering from happening the races were filmed in private and you now you can watch them online.

And there are WAY more ducks than normal, this year there are 5 heats of 300 ducks. From those 5 heats, the top 5 ducks will move onto the 3 days of semi-final races, and the first 3 ducks to finish in their semi-final races move onto the final race. The duck race normally takes place on Yellowknife River, but this year it is taking place at Cameron Falls. In the final race, these brave ducks will actually have to go over the falls if they want any chance at winning the race. 

One rubber duck in some rougher water.
One brave duck takes on some of the rougher waters during a race.

Although this event is fun, it isn’t just for fun. The money raised is split between Canadian Tire’s Jumpstart program and the Food First Foundation in the NWT. However, there are some pretty good prizes for the owners of the winning ducks. The grand prize is a $1,000 Canadian Tire gift card, second place takes home a $500 Canadian Tire gift card, and third place receives a $100 Canadian Tire gift card. 

Dog with a life jacket swimming with rubber ducks
Penny, the Cabin Radio dog, got a little involved in one of the heats

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If you would like to keep up with the duck races here is the release schedule (all times in MDT): 

Heat 1: Monday, July 13th at 10:00 AM

Heat 2: Monday, July 13th at 2:00 PM

Heat 3: Tuesday, July 14th at 10:00 AM

Heat 4: Tuesday, July 14th at 2:00 PM

Heat 5: Wednesday, July 15th at 10:00 AM

Semi-final Race 1: Thursday, July 16th at 10:00 AM

Semi-final Race 2: Friday, July 17th at 10:00 AM

Semi-final Race 3: Saturday, July 18th at 10:00 AM

Final Race: Sunday, July 19th at 7:00 PM

To watch the videos visit the Cabin Radio Facebook page.

All photos courtesy of Cabin Radio. 

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