Catawba River Races

Get those paddle strokes and swim strokes ready for the inaugural Catawba River Races. This event will feature three separate races: Open water swim, Kayak, and Stand-up Paddleboard…all competing on the waters of the Catawba River. Each race will take off separately, with the open water swim following a 1.25 mile course, and the kayaks and SUP’s following a 4 mile or 2.5 mile course. Stick around for Sol Fest, featuring live music and an impressive selection of the nation’s top craft beers, as well as a sampling of the USNWC’s local favorites.

Event Details:

  • Date – Saturday, June 16, 2018
  • Distances:
    • Open Water Swim – 1.25 Miles
      • Each swimmer must provide their own safety personnel (kayak, paddle & PFD will be provided for safety person).  This person will serve as a safety escort for the swimmer throughout the duration of the Open Water Swim race. Swim caps will be provided during packet-pickup.
    • Competitive Kayak – 4 Miles
      • Paddlers can utilize their personal kayaks or use one of the USNWC’s sit on top kayaks (first come first serve)
    • Recreational Kayak-  2.5 Miles
      • USWNC sit on top kayaks must be used for this race
    • Competitive Stand-Up Paddleboard – 4 Miles
      • Paddlers can utilize their personal race board and PFD or use one of the USNWC’s boards and PFDs (first come first serve)
    • Recreational Stand-Up Paddleboard- 2.5 Miles
      • USWNC rental boards must be used for this race (first come first serve)
  • Start Times:
    • Open Water Swim – 7:30am
    • Kayak – 9:30am
    • Stand-Up Paddleboard – 10:30am


  • Pre-Registration – Must register by June 14
    • $35 per race
  • Race-Day Registration – if available
    • $42 per race
  • *Note: Catawba River Race shirts are only guaranteed to those who pre-register by June 10


Saturday, June 16

  • 6:30am – Race day registration and packet pick-up begins at Kayak Center
  • 7:15am – Open Water Swim division – Race day registration and packet pick-up ends
  • 7:30am – Open Water Swim division starts
  • TBD – Open Water Swim awards
  • 8:30am – Course Closes
  • 9:00am – Kayak division – Race day registration and packet pick-up ends
  • 9:30am – Kayak division starts
  • TBD – Kayak division awards
  • 10:15am – Course closes
  • 10:00am – SUP division – Race day registration and packet pick-up ends
  • 10:30am – SUP division starts
  • TBD – SUP division awards
  • 12:00pm – Course closes


Awards will be given to the top 3 Male/Female participants in each division



2018 Results




Additional Event Info:

  • Interested in volunteering? Please contact the Race Director at
  • Whitewater Race Series Refund and Transfer Policy:
    • Race Registration is non-refundable
    • A 100% registration transfer must be requested 2 months (or more) in advance of race day via
    • A 50% registration transfer must be requested 1 month (or more) in advance of race day via
    • Registration transfers are only applicable to the same race the following year
  • All purchased Whitewater Race Series add-on gear must be collected during packet pick-up. Items will not be shipped.
    • If the purchased add-on items are unable to be picked up during packet pick-up, items will be held at Outfitters for pick-up for one week from the date of the event (seven days).
    • It is the participant’s responsibility to email to arrange pick-up.
    • After seven days, all unclaimed items will be donated.
  • All participants must sign the USNWC waiver before participating
  • Participants must be present to accept awards. Awards will not be mailed
  • USNWC Adventure Cards cannot be accepted as payment for Whitewater Race Series event registration.
  • Restrooms are located at the main USNWC River Center and the Pump House Biergarten
  • Locker rooms/showers are located at the main USNWC River Center
  • Event will proceed rain or shine unless conditions are deemed unsafe by the Race Director
  • All guests are required to pay a $6 parking fee at the USNWC unless guest has an annual parking pass. Annual parking passes are available through the USNWC for $50
  • The USNWC does not conduct rescues in the event of an emergency. Participants are encouraged to call 911 THEN notify event staff if an emergency is encountered.