What started as a dream, has turned into a revolution.

Escape Reality with us

Back in 2015, Josh had just dawned his first respirator to learn the art of shaping boats in the garage. While the first few goes were rough, after a long series of prototypes the Volant was born. Our passion for quality and performance drove us to seek out an advanced composite layering system and build the Volant to be a lightweight freestyle machine. But carbon boats aren’t for everyone and we had bigger ideas. In 2017 George joined the team to produce our first small batch of Gladiators for boaters here in the South Eastern US. Rotomolded with High Density Poly Ethylene (HDPE) as bomber as they come, this boat charged off just about every drop we could find in style.

Since then, we’ve only gone deeper down the rabbit hole. While the original Gladiator was tried and true, we knew we had a lot of room for improvement. We tore into our outfitting system and completely redesigned everything down to the cockpit rim. The result being the most versatile boat in our quiver; the Gladiator 2.0. Simultaneously Adam, our mad scientist CAD engineer, was hard at work crafting what would become the Hellbender. Inspired by the full-slice designs of yesteryear, but laced with modern comforts, we made the Hellbender to surf, splat, and squirt every feature the river has to offer. In the spring of 2020 we had two new designs and we were prepared for a full scale launch into the world.

We all know what happened next. Despite challenges, setbacks and general uncertainty, we managed to go with the flow through that now infamous year. We sought out a team of ambassadors, and with their help, worked to bring Verus into the kayaking consciousness across the world. Shouting into the void of the internet, the support of the boating community and people like yourself are what brought us to where we are today. So maybe you’ve seen a Verus boat out on the river, or maybe you’ve just seen us in videos, but we’re here to play and we’re here to stay. Our vision is to make the most fun kayaks out on the river and give you something to ‘YEW’ about. Whether you’re soul surfing in the sunset, or charging over a new horizon line, we think time on the water should be spent with a smile on your face. What started as a dream has turned into a revolution. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram to stay up to date on the latest news! Or tune into Verus TV on YouTube for hours of content from the archives. 

Escape reality with us!

Verus Crew:

Josh Pecaric

Josh Pecaric

President and Founder

Josh Pecaric

President and Founder

Josh Pecaric

President and Founder

I was 12 years old when I took my first canoe trip with Northwaters and Langskib.  It was in the rivers and lakes of Northern Ontario and Quebec that I fell in love with being in a boat and the unique relationship you can form with the water. The endless rivers called to me like nothing else had before. This desire moved me to learn boating in a kayak in my home state of Virginia and I have been fortunate enough to run many rivers across the US, Canada, Mexico, and Uganda.

Since I started kayaking I have owned and paddled numerous designs representing many different eras of whitewater boats.  I have had the fortune of being able to experience and study many different hulls, parting lines, rocker profiles, and paddling styles.  My design philosophy has been fashioned by my paddling, my unique perspective on boat contours, and style sensitivities.

Over my time paddling, I became one of the founding members of Free Fall Visuals, a whitewater photography/videography company formed by Adam Freeman, Cody Adams, and myself. During my work with FFV, I have really enjoyed the aspect of capturing the river just as much as hitting the line moments later. Composing shots, getting creative, and working with camera equipment has truly opened my mind up to other unique perspectives in kayaking. It is another great experience I take with me into Verus.

At 25 years old, I am incredibly excited to continue growing this company in Roanoke, Virginia. With VAs best, Bottoms Creek just outside of town while also being sandwiched between the Gauley and Green. Be on the lookout for more updates and products soon.

Email: Joshpecaric@veruskayaks.com

Phone: 540-525-3497

George Fiske

George Fiske

VP and Creative Director

George Fiske

VP and Creative Director

George Fiske

VP and Creative Director

Email: georgefiske@veruskayaks.com

Phone: 860-614-4194

@twolegs_fiske

Adam Baggett

Adam Baggett

CAD Engineer

Adam Baggett

CAD Engineer

Adam Baggett

CAD Engineer

Adam!

@mc_bagg

Jarno Manzke

Jarno Manzke

Canadian Distributor

Jarno Manzke

Canadian Distributor

Jarno Manzke

Canadian Distributor

Nicholas (Nicky) Ball

UK Distributor

Nicholas (Nicky) Ball

UK Distributor

Jake Skardon

Jake Skardon

Media and Marketing Intern

Jake Skardon

Media and Marketing Intern

Jake Skardon

Media and Marketing Intern

I've had the privilege of paddling my whole life in beautiful Western North Carolina! Outside of kayaking, I'm a student at Colorado College and I enjoy playing music. I'm super stoked to work for Verus this season and join the whitewater revolution!
@skardoggz

What does it mean to be

A Verus Ambassador?

Our Team is a reflection of what we love in the kayaking community. The folks on this page are compelled for one reason or another to chase water and spend their quality time out on the River. Whether it’s firing off the stouts, or enjoying a lap with the homies on their local creek, these folks represent what we think whitewater should be all about. All of us view paddling as a lifetime pursuit where joy is the goal and the experience is self-justified. While gnarly first descents and expedition boating are certainly cool, it’s our goal at Verus to represent and appreciate all aspects of this sport we love. Don’t get me wrong, you’ll be seeing big things from these folks. As a Team, we want to showcase the full spectrum of boating and the joy it can bring into this world; from a hard charge down the LW, to an evening of stern squirts after work, we want to share our stoke for time spent on the water!

With that in mind, we’ve built our team from the beginning to represent the culture we’re all about. Each of these athletes you see below are so much more than a list of drops run; they are wonderful human beings with a passion for the River and a prominent role in their local paddling community. They’re all talented boaters, but I guess that goes without saying. What matters more to us, and why they are on the team, is that they’re the type of folks who are always stoked to get on the water, and show up to the put-in with a smile on their face. Sharing the river with them is always a treat, and they’ll leave your abs sore from some combination of laughter and trying to keep up on cartwheels. Each of these folks believed in our vision and we wouldn’t be here today without their help. Take some time to read what they’ve got to say for themselves, and make sure to keep your eyes on the our Instagram to see their lasted content! We couldn’t be more proud to call each of these boaters a Verus Ambassador!

South East Region

Meg Pullin

-Virginia, USA

Bio

YEWWWWWW! My name is Meg. I’m originally from Baltimore but have called the gorgeous mountains of Southwest Virginia home since 2013. I am a Yoga Therapist and Garden Coordinator, but in my off time I enjoy firing up the local rivers with the Roanoke City Sirens!! From Balcony play days to Goshen rallies to Janes Creek jangles, I feel blessed to be wrapped up in such an amazing boating community and to be a part of a radical team!!

While I have always felt a strong connection to the river, I started to explore whitewater a few years ago. I instantly fell in love with playboating after a McCoy Falls play day. Since then, I have fallen for the full slice life. Being able to experience the powerful energy of the river in a HELLBENDER is a cosmic dance of present moment awareness and ultimate Stoke. The river offers such a dynamic experience that provides a space to explore joy, fear, and all the feelings in between. I can deeply appreciate the humbling nature of the river Ma. One of the greatest lessons I’ve learned on the river is that you have to let go of control and learn to move with her.

Taft Sibley

-Tennessee, USA

Bio

I’m is a native of Chattanooga, Tennessee. I was introduced to Whitewater Kayaking at 14yrs old through a City managed outdoor program. I enjoys all forms of whitewater including amateur slalom, long distance attainments, creeking and playboating. Most recently I’ve fallen in love with the full slice designs of yesteryear on my home river- The Ocoee. My kayaking passion has led him down the ultimate rabbit hole, during the summer I can be found chasing the elusive Mystery Move. I’m a 3x Mystery Champ and have also made the US Freestyle Squirt teams 3 times. In 2018, I was the first person to hit a minute long mystery on the clock.

Noah Miller

-North Carolina, USA

Bio

My first introduction to paddling was super early on seeing my dads kayaks in the garage and watching hours of his old school VHS collection I thought it was the coolest thing ever. I didn’t actually start kayaking until I turned 16 and had my first job, after saving up a few hundred bucks I found two old school boats and bought them for my dad and I to rekindle his love for the sport, little did I know this move would takeover the next five years of my life and counting. I spend most of my time in slicey boats because I love the connection to the river you get through low volume boats and all the fun you can have going down-river, so when I saw Verus was dropping some sweet new boats I knew I had to hop in and be apart of a much needed change in the sport. I was super stoked when I was invited to join the team and hangout with the guys that make it all happen, I feel like this company will really change the sport we all love and I’m grateful to be apart of it all. I hope to see you all on the rivers this year and share the Verus stoke! let’s escape reality!

Matthew Centofanti

-Virginia, USA

Bio

I am a 17-year-old kayaker on the James River in Richmond Virginia. The James offers a great 365-day training ground. After heavy rain you can find me stouting it up on Virginia classics, exploring urban micro creaks, and finding hidden gems within striking distance of my home. I love Verus boats and am so fired up to join the team. I am looking forward to continuing to grow and push my skill level while working closely with the rest of the team in order to create the best possible boats.

Lily Stair

-West Virgina, USA

Bio

I started my journey into paddling the summer of 2018, little did I know it would change my life. I started traveling almost every weekend to different rivers. It didn’t take long for me to want to learn how to throw my boat around. My first slicey boat was a Wavesport Siren that my dad bought for me for Christmas and it’s still one of my favorite boats today!! This last summer I finally learned how to cartwheel, stall my squirts/Enders, and I picked up a Carbon/Kevlar Volant that I started to learn how to loop in!! Unfortunately, this past May my shoulder popped out of socket, fortunately I was still able to paddle through October while wearing a brace, only later to find out I had a gnarly tear in my labrum as well as cartilage damage in my shoulder. I got surgery in December and I’ve been recovering well since!! I’m hoping by May I will be cleared to at least get back on to the easy stuff, and by July be back to my groove. The Verus team has been so supportive of my paddling, as well as my recovery! I’m extremely thankful to be apart of this amazing company and what we have to offer. Bring on the 2021 season, and all the verticality!!

Olivia Foskey

-Virginia, USA

Bio

Howdy! I am Olivia Farrah Foskey,  originally from the wetlands of South Carolina but have found home in the Roanoke Valley in Virginia. I began paddling in the Outdoor program at Hollins University where I met lifelong friends and mentors. I’ve been able to use kayaking as a way to connect with Appalachia in a very intimate ways. From finding wild edible foods on the banks and river glass in the water to being at the mercy of the river and her powerful currents. As I grow into kayaking (and life) I am learning to manage fear, surrender to the flow, and connect with all these wonderful humans around me. Luckily, most of these wonderful people who have guided me, cleaned up my yard sales, and cheered me on happen to be apart of the homegrown company of Verus.

Cameron Hall

-Virginia, USA

Bio

Hey there! I’m Cameron Hall , 36 years young and grew up in the mountains of Virginia. Growing up in rural Virginia being outside has been a major influence of my upbringing. It wasn’t until after graduating high school that I discovered the magic of whitewater kayaking. I’d spend countless hours on the James River teaching myself how to roll, how to ferry and how to swim, a lot. Before I knew it was in cars with new friends going to big, unfamiliar rivers, surfing big waves, splatting enormous rocks, I was hooked. Spending my first three years stuffed in a playboat, I was soon introduced to creek boating. Since that time I’ve been blessed enough to travel around the Country to some of the most talked up creeks and rivers. Fast forwarding 15 years into my boating career I find myself paddling for my own contentment, not someone else’s expectations. Verus is a company that not only gets it, they live it. Having fun is what it’s all about! SYOTR

Travis Overstreet II

-Virginia, USA

Bio

In 1981 my father took me out in a canoe. Since then I’ve been watching our lifestyle grow over the decades. Each type of boat have evolved and each has their own spirit to connect with. My preference has always been for a single blade whether it be canoe or C1 I’m down. I’ve paddled many types of boats and watching the Gladiator transform into in my opinion one of if not the top splatting machine for me. I love having a down river boat that I can slice it up on the waves, drop an edge and stair at the sky or park on the side of a rock for a nice splat. That’s what I love about the Gladiator 2.0. It’s awesome seeing what Josh & George are doing at Verus and I’ve watched Josh grow as a boater since he was 17. Now he’s the head guy at Verus. Being asked to be on the team with some extremely talented guys and gals was an honor. I can’t wait to see the next creation for the deck boating community. When you see me out in my Gladiator please feel free to go drop an edge or two so you can see what the hype is all about. Time to escape reality.

Ethan Bodin

-North Carolina, USA

Bio

North East Region

Sean McGlaughlin

-Vermont, USA

Bio

I’m Sean McLaughlin and I’m all about big smiles, big boofs, and big fish.  I love boating not only because it allows me to find center and balance in my life, but for the unforgettable memories made on and off the river with both friends and strangers.  I love making people smile and Verus helps me do that by having a sick boat for people to try out!  Every one I’ve let try my Gladiator 2.0 was incredibly joyful.  I love this boat because it allows me to use the river like a canvas, as if I’m painting it with different strokes and unique moves and opens up the river to a whole different level of fun.  I’m beyond stoked to paddle with this team of friends and to continue making life long memories.  If you see me out there come say hi and you’ll most likely be greeted with some venison jerky or fresh sushi, can’t wait to see you on the river!  Get wet, stay weird.

Chris Ryan

-Vermont, USA

Bio

I’m Chris Ryan I’m 31 years old. Currently residing in Central Vermont. Started boating at the ripe young age of 8 till I was about 12 then took quite a few years off till I reconnected with it in my 20’s. The thing I enjoy most about boating is the places it will take you from spots you might never see by any other means. The community that surrounds boating is so special there’s not another community that could match its vibe. From the stoke everyone has to spend a day on the river to somebody takin action to get your dumbass out of a bad scenario you found yourself in. So glad to have made a connection with the guys at verus. These dudes are just about pure passion and fun. The designs of the boats is so special and unique to anything on the market. When you combined the love of the sport and skilled designs you’ll get a amazing boat like the gladiator. Hope to see everyone on the river for boating season!!

Triston Choate

-Pennsylvania, USA

Bio

Ayoo I’m Triston Choate, I’m 24 years old. I live in a tiny little town in north central Pa home to some incredible hidden whitewater. I started boating around 2011 with some old gear my dad had stored away and have been off to the races ever since. It’s wild to look back at where you start, barely making it down class II/III to now completing class V first descents.

Whitewater to me might not be what everyone else sees. Amongst all that chaos is a freeing peace that can’t be found anywhere else. It is home to me.

That’s is why I kayak.

Tristan Rush

-Pennsylvania, USA

Bio

My name is Tristan Rush, and I started kayaking when I was 15 in July of 2017! I live on the East Coast in Pennsylvania. My favorite place to go kayaking is the Delaware Water Gap in the Northeast part of PA. There are lots of micro-creeks with nice gradient and good scenery. For me, kayaking is not necessarily about the thrill of it. There is lots of thrill in kayaking, however, the biggest part for me is about the mental challenge of kayaking as well as appreciating nature. I love exploring new places and doing things that haven’t been done before. Pennsylvania has a lot of hidden gems that I hope to kayak very soon!

Jamie Lynn

-Pennsylvania, USA

Bio

About me? Well, my name is Jamie Lynn I’m 34 from South Williamsport PA. I’m an equipment operator when I’m not kayaking. I love exploring the creeks in the endless mountains of North Central PA. There is some awesome stuff up here! I don’t really have a favorite class of run but I do love paddling big slides. Realistically, as long as I’m on the water, I’m having the time of my life.

Western Region

Thomas Franco

-Oregon, USA

Bio

Always stoked to be on the river with friends. I do it because I love it. My drive and passion for kayaking whitewater has brought me to incredible places. I plan to continue that with some of the best designs in the game!

Nichole Pottala

-Colorado, USA

Bio

My name is Nicole, I am 19 years old, and I am originally from Oklahoma! I began my kayak journey five years ago not realizing where it would actually take me. Since then, I have competed at Nationals and have qualified for two World Championships. Unfortunately, I had surgery on my hand and on my shoulder. Resulting in not being able to compete at World’s. But I didn’t stop there. I went to PT and built back up my strength and I am on Team Werner for Werner Paddles, and of course, the amazing Verus Kayaks. The reason I love being on team Verus is because their company is based on the true passion of kayaking, not just running big waters for clout. This company is the most authentic out there, no doubt. At Verus, we aren’t just separate paddlers from different regions, we are a family. And I am so thankful to be part of the coolest family out there. I am so excited to continue my kayaking journey with Verus. Best decision I ever made.

Canada

Etienne Beland

-Québec, Canada

Bio

Both my parents were paddlers. I started kayaking with them at a very young age. It was the perfect context for me to develop my passion. I learned whitewater rafting with my dad. From that very young age I knew I wanted to dedicate my life to the outdoors.

Since 2008, I have been actively involved in guide rafting and kayaking in different parts of Canada, namely Quebec, Alberta and British Columbia. These sports also give me the opportunity to communicate with so many people, to share with them my passion for whitewater, to make them discover a new outdoor reality and nature at its best! Acting as their guide, ensuring their security and satisfaction … to me, what a perfect job that is!

As far as I can remember, my mindset has always been about improving my kayaking skills. Whatever the challenge, a waterfall, a strong rapids, a difficult wave to surf or a technical river, I like to push myself and adapt in order to master any type of whitewater paddling. To me, it is all about water flow and the sensation of riding the veins of the earth.

I love the way Verus Kayaks design their boats. These kayaks are resistant and dependable in intense situations. The high quality of their design and material makes these boats easy to maneuver and contribute to their speed performance. I feel like they bring me to the moon!

Arnaud Tremblay

-Québec, Canada

Bio

Hey guys! I am Arnaud, 23, from Québec, Canada. I have been chasing whitewater for the last 6 years. I am always looking for new runs, but also new people to enjoy the river with. Kayaking has been more than just a sport for me (I know, it is quite cliche… hehe) but a reason to explore and discover both my home province and new countries. I love getting on crazy missions, rivers that are too high, too low, anything that makes for a good story. I spend most of time here in Quebec, either spending time on big waves or steep creek, but I also had the chance to paddle in Ecuador, Mexico and the PNW. I used to push rubber down the Ottawa, but now I work in the festival industry to make sure to be able to charge as much as possible when the snow starts to melt.

I am very excited to be working with Verus! I am stoked on their approach to boat design and their visions of what makes whitewater kayaking an amazing sport. I am looking forward to be part of the development of the next generation of boat design and to meet up with the rest of the Verus family. If you are keen to come up in Québec to catch nice and juicy creek, make sure to hit me up!

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