The first international concrete canoe competition took place in Sweden on Tuesday, June 8, 1982. The competition was held on the ”Riddarfjarden” located in the center of Stockholm just in front City Hall. 

The races were organized by the Swedish Concrete Association and FIP, the Fédération Internationale de la Précontrainte (International Federation for Prestressing).

There were at least sixteen entries from seven countries including canoes from Australia, England, West-Germany, Denmark, and Norway, plus three boats from Holland and eight from Sweden.

The races began with qualifying heats and concluded with a grand finale just before a reception for the FIP-Congress delegates was held at the Stockholm City Hall.

About the Winning Entry
The design for the winning entry at this competition was inspired by Professor Herbert Krenchel, a civil engineer and materials scientist, who taught at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU).

In the mid ’60s, Krenchel performed research on fibrous reinforcement and suggested that the plastic material called polypropylene could be used to enhance the structural behavior of cementitious materials by using it as reinforcement.

In 1981, Professor Krenchel urged a group of students at DTU to build a concrete canoe in which they incorporated a woven glass fiber into a super plasticised cement paste. The students entered the first international concrete canoe race and won.

Dr. Krenchel received the first Concrete Prize ever awarded by Danish Concrete for work in this area.