Emma Galloway of Leeds/1000 Islands used every ounce of energy to haul the fire hose and hit the target before moving to the next task at the Ingleside Firefighter Challenge on Sat., July 15. Sawyer Helmer photo
Kalynn Sawyer Helmer
INGLESIDE – The 11th annual Ingleside firefighter challenge set up in flooded grounds on Fri., July 14, only to be met with warm sunny weather on Saturday, the day of the challenge.
With each year the event grows more and more popular and firefighters travel from many of the neighbouring stations to compete. Bouncy castles, pony rides, music and food trucks provided extra entertainment during the challenge, but things really started to heat up when the competition began.
Embrun firefighter, Jimmy Ivanski, is always the one to beat, as the well-known pink-suited firefighter competes in a number of challenges per year and donates the equivalent of his winning time in funds to help fight breast cancer.
Despite their hard work no one could come close to Ivanski’s winning time of 1:15:67. Ivanski shaved approximately 10 seconds off of his time from last year’s challenge. The race was on for second and third however and the 40 competitors battled against the heat to fight for their place in the ranking. Coming in second was Tom Haughn from Ottawa with a time of 1:28:67 and in third, Pat Mayer from Hawkesbury with a time of 1:30:25.
In order to complete the course, contestants wear a full suit weighing around 80 pounds. They must climb 40 feet of stairs and pull up 40 pounds on a rope. They then have to simulate a forcible entry, race to the fire hose and hit a target and finish by dragging a 180-pound dummy to safety.