30-Pound Carp Beans Racing Kayaker
Flying fish forces racer out of river competition
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 27, 2010 8:28 AM CDT
Silver carp jump out of the water after being disturbed by sounds of watercraft.    (AP Photo/Illinois River Biological Station via the Detroit free Press, Nerissa Michaels)

(Newser) – Kayaker Brad Pennington was among the favorites to win the Missouri River 340 canoe and kayak race before a fish intervened. A 30-pound Asian silver carp jumped out of the water and hit him "like a brick," forcing him to withdraw from the endurance race with a pounding headache, Pennington says. The species have been known to panic and jump out of the water when vessels approach.

"It’s definitely a risk of being out on the river,” a wildlife official who manned a race checkpoint tells AP. “It’s extremely serious. Those things can kill you.” The official says he was hit several times by flying carp while conducting tests on the river. He and his colleagues wear hard hats on the job, though he says hockey helmets and protective netting might be more appropriate.