Canoeist dislocates shoulder before race even begins
Not even a dislocated shoulder could keep Mike Harlow away from the 2013 River Quest.
CARMACKS – Not even a dislocated shoulder could keep Mike Harlow away from the 2013 River Quest.
The 34-year-old from Inuvik, N.W.T. was supposed to be competing in his first race alongside teammate Dave Halpine as ʻTeam MADʼ in the menʼs tandem canoe division.
However, while travelling to Whitehorse on the Dempster Highway Sunday, Harlow lost control of his vehicle, which ended up rolling off the road just south of Eagle Plains.
“Iʼm happy to be alive,” Harlow said this morning over breakfast at the Coal Mine Campground in Carmacks. “Always remember to wear your seatbelt.”
Harlow said his Toyota 4-Runner hit a “washboard” section of the Dempster, which pulled the vehicle into the soft shoulder, where he lost control. The vehicle had been carrying his teamʼs canoe.
A family travelling south on the highway came upon the scene shortly after, and was able to bring Harlow back to the Eagle Plains, where he was medevaced to Dawson City.
Harlowʼs team subsequently scratched from the race, but the Inuvik land administrator is determined to cheer on his friends to Dawson – even while his left arm rests in a sling.
Harlow said this yearʼs Team 32 ʻMen of the Midnight Sun,ʼ which is made up of Inuvik residents Kendall McDonald and Tim Gordon, inspired others from the N.W.T. town to take interest in the race.
Harlow said he hopes to tackle the marathon paddling race at some time in the future.
Just 62 of the registered 67 teams started the 2013 River Quest in Whitehorse yesterday.
Other than ʻTeam MAD,ʼ Team 4 ʻLetʼs do it again!ʼ (Darwin Wiebe of Altona, Man.), Team 25 ‘Singapore Slingʼ (Daniel Joseph and Katherine De Visser of Whitehorse), Team 26 ‘Fisiko Santéʼ (Jean Lebeau of Sherbrooke, Que.), and Team 64 ʻWest Coast Expressʼ (Ryan Aldred of Sooke, B.C. and Brandon Hagen of Whitehorse) did not start the race.
Aldred and Hagenʼs team biography on the race website is worthy of a read simply for its hilarity factor.
The number of teams dropped one further this morning, as news came that Team 1 ʻLooking for Jamaica,ʼ featuring Paul and Susan Adams had scratched due to sickness incurred while crossing Lake Laberge in their tandem canoe.
The duo from Whitby, Ont. has competed in the last three races, finishing in 2011 before scratching out before the finish last year.