Tony Prijon, Sr. | Germany


Tony’s touch as a designer has impacted more than 45 years of the world of whitewater as few others have. Given his and the sport’s focus on competition, much of the efforts of his company revolved around slalom and wildwater.

His pioneering work in design extended to include a broader influence on the paddlesport industry and the popularization of plastic kayaks for every aspect of paddlesports including creek boating, playboating, recreational whitewater, and sea kayaking. Although handing off much of his company’s activities to his son, Toni continues his involvement and influence in kayak design as well and continuing active involvement in paddling on rivers around the world.

Pioneer Accomplishments:
• Designer and builder of Prijon racing paddles-renowned in racing circles
• Founded Prijon Kayak Company (1962)
• Designer of series of wildwater/downriver and slalom kayak designs which dominated international competition throughout the 1960’s and 1970’s. – Prijon Special Slalom kayaks swept K-1 slalom at the ’72 Olympics
• Introduced blow-molded kayaks into kayak market in 1980s. Designs include the Taifun, T-Slalom, T-Canyon, Tornado, Invader, and others.
• Partnered with Eskimo Kayaks to produce creek boats including the Topolino, Gatttino, and others.
• Introduced the Hurricane (1993) which launched the play boat genre

Other Accomplishments:
• Wildwater competitor (1950’s-1960s)
– 1958 German Wildwater Champion (Gold)
– 1959 World Wildwater Championships, Gold K-1