Past Registration Information

2017 Registration Instructions


The race will begin and return to the Joe Batt’s Arm Government Wharf on July 15th, at 10:30am pending weather conditions.


Applicants must:

  • Sign and submit a Registration Form (1 form per applicant; 2 forms per team)
  • Present a valid government-issued ID
  • Be 17 years of age or older; rowers who are 17 years of age must be in a team with an adult of 18 years of age or older
  • Be a 2-person team of one female rower and one male rower
  • Have a punt to race that meets our Punt Specifications

– OR –

  • Be loaned a punt to race by the Shorefast Foundation; to be entered into the Punt Draw, indicate on your registration form that you do not have a punt.

Registration Forms can be submitted to Colleen Higgins at Please note that each rower must sign and submit a registration form; one registration form per team is not sufficient.

To sign up over the phone, call Colleen at (709) 266-7192 or (709) 658-7327.

Grandfathered Rowers

In the beginning, many thought it couldn’t be done! Row a wooden punt in ten miles of open water, none the less the Atlantic Ocean. There was much speculation, questions, and uncertainty, as well as hype and anticipation.

The first punt race was held on August 13th, 2007. Twenty rowers registered for a total of ten punts, including one mixed team and one woman’s team. It hadn’t been done before, so these twenty individuals were treading new waters. The wind, the tides, and the course were a great challenge, and there weren’t any tricks of the trade to speak of. But our original rowers were up to the challenge: each one crossed the finish line and the event was indeed a huge success.

In honour of these rowers, their participation and courage to take that first step, they will always be given preference for registration in The Great Fogo Island Punt Race – To There and Back.


Punt Specifications

ALL punts entering The Great Fogo Island Punt Race to There and Back must be traditional, local punts defined as being:

  • of wood construction using the plank over “timbers” framing method
  • between 13′ 6″ and 17′ 6″ in length overall
  • built on Fogo or Change Islands by a ‘local’ boat builder
  • built using the “half-model” or “moulding” (whole-moulding) methods

ALL punts must be equipped with:

  • Wooden Oars
  • Wooden Thole Pins
  • Whiffs (Whits) made of rope

Punts may be disqualified from The Great Fogo Island Punt Race to There and Back for ANY of the following reasons:

  • The punt contains fiberglass, particularly if the hull has a fiberglass coating
  • The punt is constructed using the “steam bent” or “latted” framing method
  • The punt is not considered sea worthy (as determined by a designate of the Great Fogo Island Punt Race Steering Committee)

Click here for detailed punt specifications.

Punt Draw

Don’t own a punt? You can still race! The Shorefast Foundation owns a number of punts that can be used by rowers who do not own their own punt.

On our registration form, indicate that you do not own a punt. Your name will be entered in a random draw for the Foundation-owned punts, to take place immediately after the registration deadline of June 15th. After the draw punts are delivered in a timely fashion, so that you can get practicing!

Categories & Awards

This year our race has one single category of mixed teams (1 male rower and 1 female rower in each punt). Winners of The Great Fogo Island Punt Race to There and Back are awarded:

  • Gold Oars – $2,000
  • Silver Oars – $1,500
  • Bronze Oars – $1,000

The Oars were generously donated by:

  • Gold Oars: by Leslie Gordan Edwards. Handmade by James Edwards of Change Islands.
  • Silver Oars: by Valda and Lee Budgell. Handmade by James (Jim) Wells of Joe Batt’s Arm.
  • Bronze Oars: by the late George Waterman Jr of Fogo. Handmade by unknown.