Carp knocks kayaker from race

Missouri River marathon attempt foiled by fish

COLUMBIA, MO — A flying Asian carp has cut short a world-class Texas kayaker’s attempt to finish the 340-mile Missouri River race that began Tuesday in Kansas City, Kan.

Houston resident Brad Pennington was considered a favorite among men’s solo racers in the Missouri River 340, a contest for canoes and kayaks.

Race officials said Pennington arrived at the Lexington, Mo., checkpoint and reported that he was dizzy and could not continue after being smacked in the head by the carp. The carp, which have infested rivers since being imported in the 1970s to control algae and plankton in fish ponds, are known to panic and jump in response to passing vessels.

“It felt like a brick hit me,” said Pennington, who got a pounding headache but stayed on as a spectator.

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