Avon Descent: Maylands competitor teams up with partner for first time

Garth Civil will be tackling the Avon Descent with his partner Leanne Smith for the first time this year.
Garth Civil will be tackling the Avon Descent with his partner Leanne Smith for the first time this year.

MAYLANDS Avon Descent veteran Garth Civil will be teaming up with his partner for the first time at this weekend’s 124km paddle from Northam to Bayswater.

This year will be Civil’s 17th campaign. He previously finished runner-up in the doubles.

His partner Leanne Smith started paddling just four months ago.

The couple will be competing against the world’s best novice paddlers from August 5 to 6.

Civil said the race would be a good challenge and opportunity for him and Smith.

“We did lots of early morning training sessions and on some weekends, we go out for some longer paddles as well,” he said.

“My goal is to get us down the valley and get through the tea trees without falling in.

“I am naturally a racer and the last few times I have done it by myself (but) I do not train as much as I used to because of kids, family and work commitments.”

Smith said her goal was to finish and would definitely compete again next year.

“Garth mentioned it one night and he was looking at someone to paddle with,” she said.

“I went out to paddle with him and figured it is actually all right.

“He is great at steering so he will be guiding us down there so I am hoping that I just get down in one piece.”

The City of Bayswater will host their annual Avon Descent Finish Family Fun Day at Riverside Gardens on August 6 at 11am.

The event will feature Go Karts, a Kahuna slide, face painters, bouncy castles, Old MacDonald’s Travelling Farm, carnival rides, and a walking dinosaur, food stalls and great vantage points for the race.