The annual Belikin La Ruta Maya Belize River Challenge Canoe Race was held over the weekend and needless to say, it was a spectacular 4 days of teamwork, endurance and determination! This year drew 60 local and international teams in 7 different categories ranging from “Male, Female, Masters, Mixed, Intramural, Family and Pleasure,” paddling 170 miles on the Belize River to see who would become “La Ruta Maya Champions!”
Every year in March, professional and amateur paddlers from across the globe make the journey to Belize and on to San Ignacio Town in the Cayo District, to take part in this race which starts under the Hawksworth Bridge. From battling through intense currents, challenging rapids and intermittent showers, to even overcoming the occasional “tipping-over” of the canoe; paddler teams of 3 are tried and tested at ever stage along the route.
If you were one of the many locals and tourists who caught the race this year at various points along its route through Banana Bank, Double Head Cabbage, Burrell Boom and the finish line at “Bottom Dalla Supermarket” near the Swing Bridge, you were surely part of a memorable experience marked by local food, entertainment, prizes and boisterous cheering by fans who supported their favorite team.
First place teams by Category/ Division:
- Male Category - Koop Sheet Metal
- Female Category - Belize Bank Bulldogs
- Masters Category - Watt A Thing
- Mixed Category - UES Impacts
- Intramural Division - Belmopan Active Youth
- Family Division - Triple H
- Pleasure Division - Weh Dem Deh
Congrats to Overall Winner’s – the Koop Sheet Metal Team and all other teams, sponsors, organizers, volunteers and supporters, who made this year’s race a great success. Book your flights for next year's race courtesy of Maya Island Air.
Here are a few images taken at the end of the race: