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April 6, 2013

Clinton Hall to welcome Olympian

The Daily Star

---- — Staff Report

Former Olympian Bruce Barton owns two General Clinton Canoe Regatta pro-class records.

On May 25, he’ll have a spot in the Clinton Hall of Fame, too.

Michigan resident Barton highlights the class for the second Clinton Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, which is set for May 25 at General Clinton Park.

Other paddlers heading into the Hall are brothers Andy, Don and Jim LaFever, Al Camp, Jeff Shultis and Priscilla Reinertsen. The Hall also will welcome contributors Dick Davies, Dr. Ken Benson and Lloyd Sipple.

Barton competed in the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal. He later teamed with Serge Corbin in 1990 to set the C-2 Pro record, finishing the 70-mile Memorial Day race from Bainbridge to Cooperstown in 6 hours, 36 minutes, 4 seconds. Ten years later, 28-time finisher Barton won the C-1 Pro race down the Susquehanna River in a record time of 7:12.16.

Camp is an original 700-mile Club member who won the 1969 C-2 Pro race with Jim Root. The owner and designer of the original Camp Paddles & Canoes, 18-time finisher Camp also was one of the originators of the New York Canoe Racing Association and the New York Marathon Canoe Racing Association in the early 1970s.

Andy and Jim LaFever paddled the first canoe across the finish line at Dix Flats in 1963 and won the 1964 race. Don has 31 finishes to lead the brothers, who have combined for 17 first-place trophies in various classes of the 70-miler. Don has 11 wins in eight classes. An original 700 Club member, Andy completed 24 races. Jim has nine finishes.

Shultis has completed 33 races, highlighted by a Pro title with Bob Zaveral in 1981. He also teamed with Max Steinbacher to win Men’s CC Masters titles in 2000 and 2001. Shultis has sponsored the Upper Susquehanna Paddlers and Peddlers Canoe Race on the Susquehanna each spring for several years.

Reinertsen’s 30 finishes make her the first female in the 2,100-mile club. Her eight victories in four classes are highlighted by four Women’s Competition Cruising CC crowns. She also has two Mixed CC titles and one apiece in the Mixed CC Masters and Women’s C-1 Pro.

Davies created the Regatta Museum at General Clinton Park. A committee member for 44 years, he served as overall chairman twice and race entry chairman from 1976-83. Davies competed in the 70-miler once, with Zaveral in 1970.

Dr. Benson served as chairman in 1968 and volunteered for 40 years.

Sipple was Clinton Park’s longtime caretaker who planned and supervised the layout, design and building of all roads, and nearly all park structures. He chaired the 1974 Regatta and was an annual fixture for decades.

The first Clinton Hall of Fame class was inducted last year, coinciding with the celebration of the regatta’s 50th year.

The Class of 2012 featured paddlers Corbin, Claude Corbin, Luc Robillard, Peter Heed, Ted LaMonica, Zaveral and Jan Povlock. The inaugural class also included contributors Charlie Hinkley, Cliff Wade, Lew Whitney, Wayne King and Ed Roelle.

Serge Corbin, who suffered his first loss during the 2012 Clinton, has the most 70-mile victories with 28 in the C-2 Pro event. Corbin returned to compete in the 2012 Clinton after a six-year hiatus. He finished second with Steve Corlew as Andy Triebold and Steve Lajoie won the C-2 race for the seventh straight year.

LaMonica is the all-time leader in completed 70-milers. He sits atop the 700 Club with 41 finishes for 2,870 miles.

Regatta committee members consider victories, number of finishes, contributions to marathon canoeing and contributions to the Clinton in selecting paddlers for Hall of Fame consideration. The criteria for contributors includes years of service, foresight, dedication and the willingness to take chances.