Belize Bank Bulldogs win the15th La Ruta Maya River Challenge

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

The Belize Bank Bulldogs - Winners of the 2012 La Ruta Maya Challenge

The Belize Bank Bulldogs are the winners of the 15th annual La Ruta Maya River Challenge. The event kicked off its 15th edition of competition on March 9th from the foot of the Hawksworth Bridge on the banks of the Macal River in Santa Elena Cayo. Seventy Three teams in eight different categories raced for 170 miles ending on March 12th in Belize City. The four day challenge was vigorous and tested the paddlers’ stamina and perseverance at each leg of the race.

The teams, each consisting of three paddlers, canoed the first leg of the race from the country’s western twin towns to Banana Bank Lodge outside of Belmopan City. The first leg of the race is approximately 46 miles. The paddlers also had the challenge of wiggling through other areas dodging protruding rocks on the Macal without losing focus. The second leg of the race, the longest part of the challenge, is 60 miles starting from Banana Bank Lodge all the way to Bermudian Landing. One of the most exciting parts of the race is the third day. Along the 36 miles from Bermudian Landing to Burrell Boom, many Belizeans and tourists intercept the race along strategic observation points on the river bank. One such observation point is Burrell Boom where villagers held a fair with live music and other entertainment as the paddlers arrived at the camping grounds. Hundred of Belizeans also camped in Burrell Boom to follow the last 25 miles of race to Belize City on day four of the challenge.

At the end of the four day challenge Belize Bank Bulldog finished first overall with an accumulated time of 16 hours 36 minutes and 3 seconds closely ahead of Oceana Wave Makers who finish second at 16 hours 37 minutes and 52 seconds. Third place was National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) who finished at 16 hours 42 minutes and 44 seconds.

Other winners by categories are as follows:

  • Intramural: 1st place – St. Ignatius High School, 2nd place – UB Black Jaguars and 3rd place – Wat Eva Boys
  • Pleasure: 1st place – Crime Fighters, 2nd place – Print Belize and 3rd place Magic Capet
  • Mixed: 1st place – Beat di Burn, 2nd place – Creative Marketing Missiles and 3rd place Lost & Found
  • Female: 1st place – Peace Makers. 2nd place – Wade’s Women and 3rd place Coast Guard Dolphin
  • Master: 1st place – Wat a Ting, 2nd place – Cheesy Riders and 3rd place Grumpy Old Men
  • Family: Peace, Love & Joy
  • Dory: South West Construction

The Belize Bank Bulldogs’ Ervin, Amado and Daniel Cruz (all related) claimed a $2,000 grand prize and the Kinich Ahau jade head trophy for the fifth time.

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