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      Paddlers compete in first Boardman Open

      Water sports enthusiasts had the chance to take on a new race in Traverse City Saturday morning.

      More than 30 paddlers raced down Boardman River, starting at Schecks Trail Camp, in the first ever Boardman Open.

      â??I've been sort of complaining for years that there's nothing on the water other than The Waterman,â?? said Race TC creator Daniel Novak. â??So I decided instead of waiting for people to do races I started to do races this year.â??

      Any type of paddler, either kayak, canoe or stand-up paddle board, was welcome to participate. The race consisted of a 5 mile race and a 16 mile race.

      â??I live just down the road from Brown Bridge and when they removed the Dam I paddled the river and the river was just beautiful,â?? said Novak. â??And it opened up for a lot of activities so I wanted to drag people over here and just kind of see what it was about.â??

      He said the first year of the race was successful, and he hopes it continues to grow each year.

      â??I would like to build the short race to become a race for standup paddle borders on the river,â?? said Novak. â??They paddle a lot of open water but most of them are not too comfortable on the river so I would like them to learn and experience the river, it's a different experience.â??

      Novak started Race TC earlier this year. His goal is to bring all the paddle sports together. They've held 3 races so far, and their last race of the season is happening on September 20th.