First All-Canadian Team Wins the 8th Race to Alaska

Third time’s the charm for Team Malalo on their custom-built Cochrane trimaran, Dragon.
Team Malolo wins R2AK2024
Team Malolo celebrates the win in Ketchikan. Rachel Bradley

Team Malolo, sailed and pedaled by Canadian skipper Duncan Gladman and crewmembers Paul Gibson, Becky Kelly and Matthew Macatee, has won the eighth running of the Race to Alaska (R2AK). 

The Race to Alaska is a demanding engineless event that requires physical endurance, saltwater know-how, and the “bulldog tenacity that it takes to win a ‘no motors, no support’ adventure race” covering 750 cold-water miles from Port Townsend, Washington, to Ketchikan, Alaska. The first-place prize is $10K. Second place literally wins a set of actual steak knives.

Stage One Race Start
Boats vying for position at the start of Stage 1 “The Proving Ground” at Port Townsend, WA. Kelsey Brenner

Teams embarked on Stage 1, affectionately known as “The Proving Ground,” from Port Townsend on June 8 at 5:00 AM. From that point, they have 36 hours to cross the Strait of Juan de Fuca and make it to Victoria, BC. 

High noon on June 12 marked the start of Stage 2, “To the Bitter End,” the 710-mile odyssey from Victoria to Alaska. The winners, Team Malolo, is the first all-Canadian crew to bring home the grand prize. The effort marked the team vessel’s third attempt to win R2AK on their custom-built Cochrane trimaran, Dragon.

Malolo Cruising into Ketchikan
Team Malolo cruises into Ketchikan Bay for the win. Rachel Bradley

“It [was] unfinished business for me and for Paul, so I would say that is the most compelling reason for the two of us [to return for a third attempt],” said Captain Duncan Gladman. “For Becky and Matt, they love adventures and are super competitive. They have listened to both Paul and I and the numerous R2AK stories, so it’s natural that they both said we have to go even though I said never again after 2022.”

Team Malolo in Seymour Narrows
Team Malolo in Seymour Narrows Taylor Bayly

Gladman took the second-place steak knives on the same boat as Team Pear Shaped Racing in 2019. Gladman and Gibson dropped out of the 2022 race as a DNF (Did Not Finish) due to serious damage from a log-strike at high speed.

“We’ve said a lot about Team Malolo and their vessel Dragon hitting logs in years past,” said race boss Jesse Wiegel. “And logs were the story of their previous two attempts, but Duncan and crew have broken the curse.”

Team Malolo
Team Malolo coasting through waves en route to a first-place finish the Race to Alaska. Taylor Bayly

Gladman, Gibson, Kelly and Macatee will celebrate the win at the Alaska Fish House in Ketchikan, where they will receive the $10K prize in the form of cash—as tradition dictates—nailed to a piece of firewood. At the time of Team Malolo’s finish, the nearest competitors were just over 90 miles from Ketchikan.Twenty-nine of the 32 teams that set out from Victoria are still on the course along the Inside Passage. You can follow the remaining teams’ progress on a 24-hour tracker at