Pro Kayakers Face Off In Reno

The world’s top kayak competitors, including 2005 world freestyle champion Eric Jackson and 2004 world freestyle champion Jay Kincaid, will hit the water in downtown Reno May 12 – 15 for the second annual Reno River Festival. The three-day festival, celebrated at Reno’s new $1.5 million Truckee River Whitewater Park, will feature a series of competitions and clinics, starring the industry’s elite paddlers, with events for amateur kayakers, a whitewater expo, food, live music, and more.

Find out more about the Reno River Festival at

Eric Jackson boasts more than 15 years of kayaking accomplishments and titles, including two-time world freestyle champion, national canoe, slalom and extreme kayak champion and even Olympian. In addition to his undeniable talent, Jackson is also known for his contribution to the sport, serving as lead kayak designer for Wavesport from 1997 to 2003, when he launched his own brand, Jackson Kayaks. He is also a founder of the World Kayak Federation, author of top-selling instructional books and producer of well-known instructional DVDs and creator of the “Strokes and Concepts” kayaking program. Jackson received national fame appearing on the CBS program 48 Hours, NBC Sports, ESPN and the Discovery Channel, in addition to gaining exposure in major publications including Sports Illustrated, Men’s Journal, New York Times and National Geographic Adventurer. The veteran kayaker claimed the title of world freestyle champion on January 30, 2005, at the World Competition in Australia, defeating more than 230 competitors.

Other invited competitors include: three-time U.S. kayaking team member Jimmy Blakeney; No. 1 ranked kayaker in the world in 2004 Tanya Faux; numerous first-descents holder Scott Feindel; men’s Canadian freestyle kayaking champion Billy Harris; two-time consecutive U.S. men’s kayaking team competitor Andrew Holcombe; 2005 World’s competitor and star of Epicocity Project’s video Bigger Than Rodeo Amy Jimmerson; New Zealand native and world-champion kayaker Nikki Kelly; 15-year veteran and 2001 bronze world medalist Bryan Kirk; U.S. men’s team member and 2001 freestyle Junior World champion Jesse Murphy; U.S. Freestyle Team Member, who has made finals in every freestyle event since 2001 and placed top six in every competition, Tanya Shuman; 2003 Junior World champion and inventor of the “Wave Loop” in Dagger G-Force, Rush Sturges; 2003 U.S. Freestyle team and Squirt Champion Dustin Urban; and five-time U.S. team member and 2002 Pre-World champion Brooke Winger.

For more details about the annual Reno River Festival and its featured athletes, please visit

The article was originally published on Canoe & Kayak

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