2020 Green Race - Photo Rob Giersch

We got a minute to chat with 12-time Green Race champ Adriene Levknecht to share about her recent win at the Lord of the Fork and how she feels going into Green Race this weekend!

Longboat Season is Here Part 2

Longboat season is coming to an end in an exciting way with Green Race this weekend. We were stoked to meet up with the Queen of the Green and all-around stoked Dagger Kayaks athlete Adriene Levknecht and collect her thoughts!

Coming off the exciting weekend, reclaiming title of the "Female Lord of the Fork," can you tell us a bit about the experience?

I love the Russell Fork so much and the weekend is always full of laughter and a lot of kayaking. I felt pretty rough in my boat my first lap on Saturday morning after getting two really good laps Friday. I also forgot my headphones and was freaking out right before the race. Maybe it was for the better, I felt alright during the race and I’m really happy to finally feel like I’m getting my body back after I had covid last year. The win was the cherry on top but seeing racers like Olivia McGinnis put a time down that was only 10 seconds behind me was the most impressive part. 

What gear are you rocking these days? PFD, Helmet, Skirt, Paddle (Offset and Length), Boat?

NRS Ninja PFD, the Sweet Protection Rocker, Werner Odachi 197 15 degree (I know, weird) and the new version [of the] Dagger Vanguard coming out next year!

You've been at the top of the sport for a good bit of time, how do you stay stoked on paddling and not get burnt out? 

I have gone through waves where I hate kayaking a lot. But I take a step back and do some other sport like mountain biking or surfing, then when I come back it reminds me of all of the things I miss about kayaking, the rivers and the people. I make a point to never stop learning, even on class two. 

What sort of pre-race training or prep do you do? Attainments, Lake Sessions, Fitness, etc.?

I’ve been pretty bad with this the last couple years. I just try to have time in a kayak and keep a status quo fitness level. I’ve been mountain biking more, so that’s my cardio. Time in a kayak is what I need the most. I mean, I was in a cast on my hand a month ago!! 

How do you conquer your nerves? / Do you get nervous out there?

If you don’t get nervous out there, you may be a bit of a sociopath. Heck yes I do. But I find people who support me even when I’m feeling down about my abilities. Friends who make fun of each other after bad lines are the best. Or friends who hold space for you while you’re freaking out, they are the best too. Find people who do both of those and they are friends for life. 

How do you overcome the "broiness" of the Green Race, how do you separate yourself and focus on the race?

Most of the time I just ignore it and my lines on the water show for not having a ballsack. It’s taken me a long time to get there but hopefully it’s paving the way for more women to step up and race and show men we can run with the horses too. 

We appreciate you taking the time to chat with CKS Online, Adriene! Go fast and take chances this weekend, we will be rooting for you!

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