Nelo Kayaks Video on World Marathon Champs

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Photo’s from World Marathon Champs

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I made a Gallery of photo’s from the K1 race at Worlds, on Flickr, taken by

anselmo6424bernal

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32053337@N03/galleries/72157625092276656/

Here is the link  to the K2 gallery:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32053337@N03/galleries/72157624967587345/

World Marathon Champs:2x4th “Chocolate medals”

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Going into the Worlds this year, I didn’t really have any idea how I would do. 1 month before I left, I was feeling really good, and training was going pretty well. 3 weeks of surf ski racing, traveling, and training in a ski was not my ideal choice of a build up though.

I also picked up a touch of sickness, and had to go on anti-biotics the week before. Anyhow I raced my heart out, and am pretty happy with my 4th. All my portages were super, except for the last one. I really needed to get into the water first if I wanted a shot at a medal, and I got squeezed by the German girl and my nose got caught under the jetty, making it hard for me to get out fast. Anyhow, I ran hard, but didn’t really have the energy when I put in, to be able to do much damage on the last 500m. A painful 4th was my result, but funny enough, I am happy with it. Amazing how your levels of expectations change according to how things change along the way. Even with my terrible start, once I caught back up to the front bunch, I decided I really wanted a medal! Next year, Singapore!

Bridgitte and I decided last minute to hop in a double. We set up the boat (thanks to Jenna Ward for the K2, and Nelo for helping us set it up). Hopped in before the race to make sure it was perfect, then it was Ready, GO!! Front bunch, lots of tussling, hard portages and… another 4th. My body was cramping and misbehaving the last half of the race. I didn’t recover properly after the K1, as I didn’t really plan on paddling the K2, so I didn’t focus on it. I think the double day is possible, you just have to be prepared. Thanks Bridge for a great race though.

All in all, South Africa’s best ever K1 performance in the woman’s event, and 3rd best doubles behind Alexa and Donia’s silver and Nikki and my bronze.

I flew home straight to PE airport, and my mom fetched me and we drove to Cradock for the Fish River Marathon, my favourite event. To say I am tired is an understatement, and Robyn Kime and I hopped in the boat for the first time yesterday. It felt good, we haven’t had much time to prep but I am hoping Robyn’s great river skills, and youth 🙂 will get us through the 82km.

I will post more photo’s from Worlds and more news form the Fish when I get back to Plett.

Thanks for all the well wishes.

Banyoles

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After a very cool time in Ibiza and Formentera, I flew to Barcelona and  hired a car. My day got made when the rental guy said “It’s a Mini-Cooper”!! Yes please:)

Lost the map the rental guy gave me, but made it ok anyway. Went straight to the Lake, which is where they held the canoeing and kayaking events for the Barcelona Olympics. I found Albert, the local legend, who is paddling K2 for Spain, and he hooked me up with a Youth Hostel.

After a good rest (missed out on that these past few days) I headed out on my brand new Nelo (cool Green colour-thanks Andre). It has been 3 weeks since I last sat in a K1 and the adjustment took a while…  I found my flatwater legs soon enough, now t is time to work on some speed.

Unfortunately I picked up a bug, but have been taking antibiotics ad am now feeling a bit better. Had to take the Mini back (my heart was broken). Mark Bosch arrived on Thursday, and it was good to have a training partner. The whole SA team arrived on Saturday.

The weather has turned for the worse now though, from 35 degrees to constant rain, but at least it’s still warm. There are just a hell of a lot of flies…

Been touring around a bit, went to Girona, and Olot. Very cool old towns, pretty romantic.

That little dot is me:) In Girona

Still 4 sleeps until my race. Hope it comes fast as I have had enough of this spot now… My speed has got better in the boat and I am now ready to race. After a month of racing my ski in Europe, the best I can hope for is just to survive:)

The Legends: Roelof and Andre

Here is the race website for more info: www.banyoles2010.com

Formentera Race

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After our epic car journey with Rui (a man of great patience), we boarded the ferry to Formentera. Rui put his whole van plus trailer on board, and we were off.

We arrived to one of the most beautiful spots! I can’t belive I went to an island to do a surf ski race (well, an island next to Ibiza). It was an amazing experience, and I don’t think I would have ever visited this place otherwise. It is known as the hippy island, and apparently Bob Marley played in one of the caves years back.

We wasted no time, and had a swim in the unbelievably blue water. Not too many fish, but great anyway!

I totally got into the Spanish island vibe, we went to bed late, woke up late, had siesta’s, paddled in bikini’s (not the boys), drank Pinto De Verano (which is red wine mixed with lemon juice and loads of ice) and ate lots of tapas.

The Race: (was hacking with the camera-first left it in Rui’s car, then battery died, then camera died on an underwater experience, so no photo’s, waiting for the other’s)

I had a terrible start, was lying about 20th. I managed to sneak some rebounds and work my way up to 10th, and then on the downwind bit, I caught up a few places into 6th overall and first woman). There were 2 laps of this headwind-downwind course, and the 2nd lap turned out to be a bit harder as the wind died. All in all a good event, with a prize giving dinner thrown in too. Sean Rice took the guys from Barry Lewin and Richard von Wildeman (Oos Kaap).

Unfortunately Rich lost his camera, and mine died, so hoping to get some more photos from the others. The next day we  caught the ferry across to Ibiza. I was surprised at how awesome it is. I definitely didn’t go for the party scene, but the beaches  are incredible. Wayne “the Legend tour guide” took us to all the best spots, and we checked out the Old Town, and had dinner with Amanda and Mark before crashing at our apartment. No sleep for us however, as all the Pommies were coming (or going) to the Disco’s…

Wayne Powell (tour guide)

Wayne dropped us off at the airport, and I said Adios to the guys as they were all heading home. the second part of my Eurotrip is just beginning though, as I have Marathon Worlds next week. I flew to Barcelona and rented a car. I had been threatening to rent a Mini Cooper, and when the guy behind the counter said that was all he had, I knew it was meant to be! Wow, a bright red one too! STOKED!!!

I lost the map he gave me, but Banyoles was pretty easy to find. Made my way to the Lake, and ran into a guy I know, who hooked me up with a spot to stay right on the water. Lucky lucky! The rest of the team arrives on Saturday, and I am fetching Mark Bosch tomorrow (and dropping off the Mini-my heart is already sore!).

Been good to be on my own for  change. Making the adjustment from Surf Ski to K1 has been interesting, but feeling better in the boat today. Unfortunately have picked up a head cold, hoping it goes away soonest! Took the Mini to Girona to see the sights and sounds, very cool city, hope there are no speeding fines waiting for me!

OK, better hit the sack, as need to be up early tomorrow.

have bought a new camera so hopefully will get some classic shots of the car (and the race venue of course!).

Buenes Nochas:)