The day started cold and overcast, but warmer temperatures and sunshine finally enveloped the 136 paddlers in 85 watercraft on Saturday, April 6 for the 46th annual Passagasawakeag (Passy) River Race.

The second of two straight whitewater river races sponsored by the Waldo County YMCA held plenty of fun and camaraderie for the hardy, adventurous paddlers of all ages and experience.

And for the second consecutive weekend kayaker Ben Randall of Sabattus paddled to the fastest time as he crossed the rock- and debris-filled course in 43 minutes and 47 seconds.

Randall also finished first overall in the 40th St. George River Race on Saturday, March 30 in 40:58.

Watch video and see more than 120 photos below.

The "Passy" course, which included high, fast, and mighty cold water, started at the Littlefield Farm in Waldo, followed by one mile of flat water with many curves, passed under a cement bridge, then another mile of flat water, followed by a short stretch of Class I rapids, two miles of flat water to Rolerson's Bridge and then Class I, II and III whitewater for one and a half miles before a flat-water finish.

There was concern, at one point, the river might not be ice-free and force postponement of the race, but that issue resolved itself and the event went on without a hitch.

The popular, much-anticipated Waldo County YMCA-sponsored river races are timeless rites of spring — and begin the state's historic paddle season.

The St. George event, which started in Searsmont and finished in Appleton, included 109 craft carrying 173 paddlers.

For more information on the races, call Karen Varney at 207-338-4598 or email her at

The individual results from the Passagasawakeag River Race included:

Anything goes — 1, Aurielie Labarre, Orono, and Guillaume Bourdin, Orono, 1:03:26; 2, Chris Dyer, Morrill, Brooke Dyer, Morrill, and Amelia Lepow, Waldo, 1:20:17; and 3, Autumn Jackson, Belfast, Alissa Green, and Devon Kane, Winterport, DNF.

Century — 1, Bob Martin, Dedham, Terry Wescott, Thorndike, 52:16; 2, Lisa Escorsio, Tenants Harbor, and Lee McKay, South Portland, 59:01; and 3, Tom Maycock, Belfast, and John Lightner, Belfast, 1:04:26.

Clydesdale — 1, Maxwell Dingle, Rockport, and Rick O’Donald, Newburgh, 53:13; and 2, Mark Risinger, Saco, and Allisen Risinger, Saco, 1:00:47.

College — 1, Kellen Doyle, Orono, and Sarha Zacharinson, Minn., 59:37.

High school — 1, Nolan Mabee, and Ross Cobo-Lewis, 54:24; and 2, Daisy Drinkwater, Orono, and Elijah McGill, Orono, 59:03.

Junior/Senior ages 12 and under — 1, Matt Dingle, Rockport, and Ethan Dingle, Rockport, 52:07; 2, Jamie Hannon, Wentworth, N.H., and Corva Hannon, Wentworth, N.H., 53:14; 3, Kelly McDonald, Portland, and Charlotte McDonald, Portland, 57:55; 4, Silas Wagner, Eliot, and Asa Wagner, Eliot, 59:54; 5, Andy Price, Portland, and Alex Price, Portland, 1:02:15; and 6, Jonathan Wardell, Dedham, and Nicklaus Wardell, Dedham, 1:12:04.

Junior/Senior ages 13 and older — 1, Anna Drinkert, Orono, and James Mabee, Bangor, 51:39; 2, Dan Kelley, Corinth, and Colby Kelley, Corinth, 55:28; 3, Lee Graf, Searsmont, and Lincoln Graf, Searsmont, 56:07; 4, Isaac Widmer, Montville, and Glen Widmer, Montville, 57:07; 5, Greg Soule, Standish, and Maggie Soule, Standish, 59:53; 6, Steve Engle, Wilton, and Moriah Reusch, Farmington, 1:06:10; and 7, Kevin Morrissey, Albion, and Hannah Kugelmeyer, Albion, 1:06:23.

Kayak — 1, Ben Randall, Sabattus, 43:47; 2, Hank Thornburn, Harpswell, 45:15; 3, Andrew Cooper, 47:19; 4, Justin Varney, Northport, 48:48; 5, Kell Fremouw, 49:40; 6, Ben Fuller, Cushing, 56:37; and 7, Christopher Taylor, 1:11:01.

Kayak short — 1, Mark Bamford, Bucksport, 50:35: 2, Brian Foley, Orono, 50:38; 3, Dam Baumert, Levant, 51:43; 4, Jay Baltes, Brunswick, 53:32; 5, Larry Merrill, Orrington, 55:08; 6, Glenn Montgomery, Belfast, 59:57; and 7, Jeff Sands, Dexter, DNF.

Kayak women — 1, Jennifer Bambrick, Levant, 1:10:55; and 2, Aili Hartikka, Bath, 1:15:44.

Kayak weekend warrior — 1, Justin Diamond, Searsport, 1:01:29.

OC1 — 1, Chris Dalton, Bangor, 52:42; 2, Paul Brown, Swanville, 54:03; 3, Morgan Baxter, Gorham, 56:07; 4, Dick Kelley, Brewer, 57:19; 5, Brian Battista, Parsonsfield, 58:07; and 6, R.W. Estella, Orono, 1:07:54.

OC1R — 1, Rick Gause, North Yarmouth, 52:44; 2, Jake Feener, Patten, 55:16; 3, Greg Shute, Alna, 55:25; 4, D.W. Smith, Lamoine, 56:35; 5, Dan Littlefield, Belfast, 58:16; 6, Rod Norberg, 1:01:26; 7, Jeff Dick, Newcastle, 1:03:37; and 8, Bob Winslow, Belfast, 1:03:03.

OC1W — 1, Nichole Grohoski, Ellsworth, 57:48.

OC2 mixed — 1, Priscilla Reinerston, Contoocook, N.H., and Al Paradise, Pittsfield, N.H., 50:50.

OC2 mixed rec — 1, Caitlin May, Belfast, and Aaron Cross, MOrrill, 51:08; 2, Abby Robertson, Eliot, and River Robertson, Eliot, 55;09; 3, Karen Francoeur, Orono, and Nils Haentjens, Orono, 55:48; 4, Chris Corey, Topsham, and Kathy Willette, Topsham, 57:25; 5, Erica Buswell, Searsport, and Scott Giroux, Searsport, 1:04:26; 6, Sean Kluttz, Portland, and Jade Kluttz, Portland, 1:10:56; and 7, Kelly Gunthorpe, Belfast, and Hannah Gray, Belfast, 1:21:18.

OC2M — 1, Mark Ranco, Bangor, and Chris Francis, Bangor, 46:34; 2, Bern Galipeau, Greenbush, and Damon Galipeau, Indian Island, 46:53; 3, Bucky Owen, Orono, and Jeff Owen, Orono, 48:09; 4, Ashton Mabee, Bangor, and Clayton Cole, Corinth, 48:19; and 5, Baxter Forrest, Brewer, and Oliver Broughton, Blue Hill, 54:07.

OC2RM — 1, Bill Deighan, Newburgh, and Andrew Deighan, Bar Harbor, 51:33; 2, Brian Wagner, Lisbon, and Kevin Coombs, Belfast, 53:58; 3, Nolan Steele, Hope, and Ted Steele, Hope, 53:44; 4, Richard May, Belfast, and Dan May, Portland, 54:38; and 5, Brian Walls, Lamoine, and Bud Williams, Southwest Harbor, 1:00:08.

OC2RS — 1, Nick Bambrick, Levant, Edmund Hatch, Hermon, 58:05; 2, Robert Hanscome, Bar Harbor, and Adam Sawyer, Trenton, 1:00:19; 3, Ben Neal, Waterville, and Riley Pratt, Belfast, 1:02:02; 4, Logan Perkins, Swanville, and Ben Bratt, Swanville, 1:02:12; and 5, James Seymour, Portland, and Alton Robbins, Stockton Springs, 1:02: 32.

OC2W — 1, Tammy Kelley, Mount Desert Island, and Ander Thibaud, Mount Desert Island, 54:25; 4, Jen Adams, Westport Island, and Hannah Marshall, Wiscasset, 59:12; and 5, Julia Daly, Farmington, and Emma Ansara, Wilton, 1:08:26.

OC2WW — 1, Josh Povec, Rockport, and Matt Prindiville, Rockport, 55:34; 2, Aaron Winslow, Belmont, and Kara Richards, Belfast, 58:51; and 3, Patrick Richards, Belfast, and Kayden Richards, Belfast, 1:17:02.

The following are classifications for the races:

Kayak short (KS): Kayaks up to and including 13 feet 4 inches.

Kayak (KW): Any length.

Kayak (K): Kayaks 13-5 and above.

Kayak Weekend Warrior (KWW): For beginner and intermediate kayakers.

Open Canoe Racing (OC1): One person.

Open Canoe Recreational (OC1R): One person.

Open Canoe Racing or Recreational (OC1W): One woman.

Open Canoe Racing (OC2M): Two-person racing canoes 16-6t o 18-6.

Open Canoe Mixed (OC2Mix): One male, one female in race-length canoe.

Open Canoe Recreational (OC2MixRec): One male, one female, recreational canoe.

Open Canoe Recreational Short (OC2RS): Two-person canoes under 16-6.

Open Canoe Recreational Medium (OC2RM): Two-person canoes 16-6 to18-6.

Open Canoe Weekend (OC2WW): Two person (for beginner and intermediate paddlers).

Open Canoe Two Women (OC2W): Any length canoe.

Open Canoe Recreation Junior/Senior (OC2Jr/Sr Rec): One adult, one child (12 years or younger).

Open Canoe Recreation Junior/Senior (OC2Jr/Sr Rec): One adult, one junior ages 13-16.

Century Recreation — Two person, combined ages more than 100 recreational boat.

High School — Two high school students, recreational boat.

College (KW, KM, OC2, OC1W, OC1M) — Recreational crafts only.

Clydesdale —Two person, combined weight over 425 pounds.