Au courant|51st Annual Bogue Chitto Canoe Race concludes

Published 2:53 pm Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Rain held off for the final leg of the 51st Explorer Venturer Bogue Chitto River Marathon Canoe Race on Saturday morning.

The annual event is sponsored by the Istrouma Council, Boy Scouts of America, headquartered in Baton Rouge and hosted by the Bogue Tuchenna District.

Following a delayed start from the rest of the pack of about 10 canoes, the winning boys advanced aluminum team of Paul Dauterive, Josh Treadway, Jonathan Pierce and Tyler Milner used an entire summer of training to take overall victory at the completion of the trek at Lock No. 1 on the Pearl River Navigational Canal.

The three-day, six-leg event down the Bogue Chitto River began Thursday in McComb, Miss. as a prelude to the national White River Race beginning this week in Arkansas.

Head advisor, Lt. Col. Bobby Miller, 84, refused to let sore tendons from fall about a month ago that required the aide of a cane to stop him from documenting the race with video and film like he does every year.

“This is a very disciplined group that we have this year so it makes my job a lot easier,” Miller said. “I did all my yelling at practice.”

Much of the race was held in the rain the previous two days but Miller said it didn’t discourage anyone.

“They paddled through it and were real troopers,” Miller said. “It was a real pleasure having these kids paddle this year.”

Miller said over 30 canoers are participating this year including two girls teams headed by advisor Dora Mohan.

“They have done a real good job of recruiting,” Miller said.

As the first canoe approached the Hwy. 21 bridge Saturday morning, the days of rain produced a strong current to take advantage of.

“Stay in the current, girls,” Mohan told them from atop the bridge. “Get in the moving current.”

Upon completion, awards were presented including plaques in the shape of the state of Louisiana and trophies carved by Henry Blow using a combination of cedar, cypress and pine.

“I have been cutting them out for a long time,” Blow said. “It takes about a month to do them all. It is an old pattern that they have been using for over 30 years.”

The second place advanced aluminum team consisted of Luke Owens, A.J. Holmes, Roo Breland, Colby Spears, Johnathan Turner and James Stillwell.

The boys novice team included Tim Smith, Brannan Crosby, Zach Mitchell, Hayden Thorton, Austin Hunt and Tyler Seals. The girls novice team consisted of Morgan Thigpen, Kirsten Barber, Grace Fornea, Laiton Jenkins and Sabrina Meyn.

The boys open cruising team included Duncan McClenden, Maison Montgomery, Mason Cooper, Kyle Pennino, Adam Economo and Eric Richard. The boys beginners team consisted of Travis Singley, Joseph Arabi and Landon Arabi and the girls beginners team included Jessica Lann, Sierra Rowe and Ryan Smith.

Three teams competed in the “Old Timers” race of former scouts paddling the final leg only. David Jenkins and Greg Lann won the “Spot Bankston Trophy” in this category and was followed by Lelan Henley and Donald Manuel and April Weintritt and Morgan Simmons.

Safety boats were provided by Deep South Rescue of Varnado.