Any person aged 15 and over can register for the event – either the Main course or Short Course. Minors under the age of 15 can participate in the event as long as they are accompanied by an adult accepting parental responsibility, ideally in the same craft or in an accompanying craft in the case of single kayaks for example. All participants must declare that they have read and accept these regulations as per the Waiver and that they are sufficiently physically and mentally fit to participate in the event.
Rowed or paddled boats or craft of any weight and size can take part in the event. There is no limit to the number of rowers or paddlers in a craft but all craft must be suitable for the intended number of occupants and only powered by human power. No motorized or sailed craft are permitted in the event itself. However, as the event will be conducted in open waters, it is possible that other vessels not participating in the event, either motorized or under sail, may be using the same waterways at the same time as the event.
Rules and Checks
Crews should not encroach on or obstruct the proper course of another craft, interfere with other crews’ oars or commit any act to the detriment of other participants or which might threaten their safety or free enjoyment of the event either as a participant or as a spectator. It is also strictly forbidden for any craft to leave the waters of the fixed course which will be conspicuously marked by signs set out by the Organizing Committee unless previously approved. Safety checks may be carried out along the course and any infringements to these regulations will be referred to the Organizing Committee for appropriate action.
Conduct and Disciplinary Measures
The Organizing Committee of the event will consider any complaints arising from the event as well as any notifications of infringements to these regulations. Their decision on these matters will be final and, in the case of proven misconduct by any participant, penalties may be imposed including but not limited to the possible exclusion from any future event conducted.
Use of Personal Information - refer to Privacy page
Other Event Info
The Vogalonga Downunda 2020 regatta is scheduled to start at 9am on Sunday 26 April 2020.
A limited Closed Water permit has been secured to effect a slow ceremonial procession ON THE PORT (LEFT) SIDE OF THE CHANNEL FROM THE GOOLWA AQUATIC CLUB (GAC) TO THE WHARF corresponding to Leg 1 of the Main Course route.
All boats are required to assemble on the water in front of the Goolwa Aquatic Club by 8.45 am and follow any instructions given by the relevant Course Officials.
For this ceremonial start of the event, any participating Venetian boat or craft rowed Venetian-style or some other featured boat will be positioned at the head of the fleet as a gesture of solidarity with Venice and to acknowledge the origins of the event. The likely fastest craft (e.g. sculls) in the fleet will be next in line, including rowing-class boats and dragon boats with larger crews, followed by slower boats or craft that carry fewer rowers or paddlers.
Once assembled, a signal will be given for the fleet of participants undertaking the Main Course to commence a slow procession from the GAC towards the Hindmarsh Island bridge. While in procession, all craft/vessels must remain behind any lead Venetian or featured boat until they reach the Wharf precinct. Once the lead boats are directly opposite the Goolwa Wharf, a call will be made via loud speaker for a customary Alza Remi – a traditional ‘raising-of-the-oars’ Venetian salute to Venice and Goolwa. On this call, all participants will raise their oars or paddles (or arms if oars are locked) vertically in salute. All craft will then be free to row at their desired speed following the Main Course outlined in the participant information provided as per the Main Course map.
All craft/vessels undertaking the Short Course will proceed directly from the GAC towards the entrance to the Hindmarsh Island Marina and row or paddle at their own desired speed. Participants undertaking the Short Course may make more than one circuit of the course or extend their course into the other canals on Hindmarsh Island as they wish before returning to the GAC where lunch will be provided to registered participants on presentation of the relevant voucher provided at check-in.
The Vogalonga Downunda Main Course will be along a 12.5 km course along the Goolwa River from the Goolwa Aquatic Club (GAC) keeping to the right, passing under the Hindmarsh Island bridge, continuing east/southeast along the Hindmarsh Island shoreline, then turning left passing around the first reed island near Laffin Point then returning along the main channel to the GAC always keeping to the right. On-course buoys will indicate the turning points to commence the return leg. Participants may extend their course by rowing or paddling further up Currency Creek or around other reed islands off Laffin Point as they wish.
The shorter family-focused/child-friendly course will be from the GAC over to Hindmarsh Island, through the canals and back to the GAC. This shorter course is also an optional extension course for all craft undertaking the Main Course. Any craft or crew intending to enter the canals and Marina on Hindmarsh Island must ensure that their craft is furnished with suitable equipment (oars) for rowing and steering through narrower passages without causing any interference to other non-participating craft or moored vessels wishing to enter or exit the marina.
The Vogalonga Down Unda is a non-competitive event and as such it does not have performance rankings based on the time taken to complete any course. Finishers must simply arrive at the finishing line in front of the GAC which may be indicated by large red buoys. Once you have finished your preferred course and disembarked, head to the relevant site/marque (to be advised) to collect a Certificate of Completion and food voucher. Registered participants will also be marked off as having completed the course. Only registered participants who are wearing the coloured wrist band provided at check-in prior to the official start of the event will receive a Certificate and food voucher included in a Participant Pack with some sponsor goodies.
Accidents and Assistance
All participants will be required to comply with relevant local laws pertaining to water safety and must wear approved personal floatation devices/life jackets at all times while on the water unless an exemption applies to their particular craft. The Organizing Committee declines all responsibility for accidents that happen to participants or are caused by participants to other people or items during the course of the event. Crews and craft can expect on-water support services to be provided during the event until 1pm on the day of the event.