That's coincidental, I didn't get the invite for the Coal Creek 1st D until 2 days afterwards. I guess we all learned something today.
j/k, bummed you didn't make it Nick, but I figured one Wigston was good enough. A Wigston x2 team might be interesting though. I'm starting to think Oliver is bad luck. He lost to two swimmers this year and couldn't even blame Forrest for it.
I tend to agree that the long boat thing is a problem. Tango claims it's not an unfair advantage because it's harder, but let's face it, that guy can barely stay in any boat. And now that he's moved away, he's pretty much dead to me (until I need a place to crash in the Gorge - "Tango, bratha, what's up!").
I had hoped the boat thing would be self-policing. Last year I suggested that modern long boats were discouraged, while old-school long boats in the hand of boaters that were likely to create entertaining carnage was cool (thanks El Scotto). I brought it up several times with people for this year's race and the prevailing sentiment seemed to be to keep it a free for all, so I acquiesced. It's never quite apples to apples. Boats like the Remix are definitely way faster than average, but at least it keeps things more even. I kind of like the 30 sec penalty idea though.
As far as I know, most kayak races allow swimming across the finish line. I think a race is the fastest person to the finish line, boat or no boat. From what I gather, Hojo was throwing a rope at people and not stopping the timer until they were dragged in, he put the rope down, and grabbed his timer, so there was a ad-hoc penalty. (Speaking of which, I think we ought to rethink the safety position there. I don't see much use in dragging someone through the last two little holes with a rope.)
Per Mike's suggestion, we could end the race at the little boof at the start of lower, which would effectively DQ swimmers. However, one advantage of ending it right at the bridge is that racers are right there to rescue potential swimmers.
Anyway, as Alex points out, unless Leif or Nathan show up, nobody takes the official standings too seriously. It seemed like a good vibe with everybody putting in a good effort and having a good time.