Dragons, Markets, Nunneries…

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The 2012 Dragon Run has to go down as one of the hottest, run-less races of the year. The writing was on the wall when I heard Ruth “Wind Killer” Highman had entered, but I was hoping her curse had lifted 🙂

The whole week had been pretty good, with a nice wind blowing and some really fun runs, as well as cool temperatures. However, come race day, and the Highman Curse was on full throttle. Hot, windless and of course, RUN-LESS! That been said, as a pro surf ski paddler you need to be able to race in anything, and the conditions were there for all to suffer in!

I had a fairly average race, and never felt spectacular. A small detour with a tugboat and barge saw me lose much-needed time, and after an honest attempt to catch up, I think I burned up any spare reserves I might have had. Naomi Flood from Aus seemed to be coping with the heat and had a great day to finish just shy of a minute ahead of me, with the “Wind Killer” even less than that behind me.

In the men’s race, Tim Jacobs showed that he is also the star of the Jacobs family (brother Pete recently won the Hawaii Ironman) to take the win from a strong Grant vd Walt (in his best ever showing at an international race!) and Hank MacGregor in 3rd.

As usual the race organisors put on a great event, well done Andy Orr and your team. Raymond Lo of Nelo HK was super to me, thanks for your help and lifts! And of course thanks to Andre Santos for not only getting me to the event, but actually getting on the water and suffering along with TJ and I. Not many boat manufacturers and bosses will do that!

Sunday saw me trying to be a tourist, and I ended up at the Chi Lin Nunnery and the Nan Lian Gardens. Beautiful calming places to be, just a stone’s throw from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Chi Lin Nunnery

I am stoked to be home again, and getting into a nice routine with training early and appreciating these hot summer (early) mornings. Next up is the CT WCup series races, and then the big one, Cape Point Challenge. 50km of fun, fun, fun!

Craziness of Mongkok Market

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Hong Kong

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View of the race course from the Dragons Back

I am back in Hong Kong for the dragon Run surf ski race (I missed last year due to injury). I forgot how great this place is! The water is warm, the wind blows, and there is so much activity/buzz, it’s hard to get bored.

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I have been paddling the last stretch of the race course, from the “Kissing Whales” back to the finish at the fantastic Stanley Sea School. The runs have been great, and my green Nelo ski matches the colour of the water here. The weather has been pretty warm, even though this is their “winter”!

Yesterday we hiked up and on top of the dragon’s Back, which gave us a great view of the race course, well besides the fog/smog! The trails are great, and apparently there is a 100km trail run here in December.

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Allie enjoying the hike

Tomorrow is race day, and unfortunately the wind prediction is not looking ideal. Then again, it’s the ocean, and this is an island, so there will always be a bump to catch!

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I will post a race report after the event.

Mich 🙂

The Dragon Run

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Shew, hard race! Very technical, great runs, but veeeerrrrry technical.

Had a good day out, felt comfortable on the runs, just got very cold at the start (didn’t pack any thermals), and it came back to bite me later on, as I started cramping with 5km’s to go. The last 5km were really hard, as I got to the Kissing Whale’s first, but with not too much of a lead, and I was convinced that Ruth and Katie were going to catch me. Managed to hang on to 1st, very stoked to win here in Hong Kong again.

Aussies took 1st – 3rd in the men’s race, with Lightee in 4th and Dawid in 5th.

This is definately a race not too miss. Great organisation, fanastic course, hospitality of note, and … shopping for Africa 🙂

Will try get hold of some photo’s soon.

Went to Kowloon today, hectic! 5 hours of serious bargaining, shopping, and trying to walk at the same time as more 50 000 other people. Good times!

Photo of the women’s clinic here in Stanley.

Great Day, Ocean Park and Ladies Paddling Clinic-more photo’s tomorrow

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Babs @ Ladies Clinic

Ocean Park about to get raided by the Saffa’s

Movember

Me and Barry, training paddle

Hong Kong

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I arrived in Hong Kong last night, after 3 flights, and a 200km drive. Eish, travelling from Plett adds a bit of time to anything 🙂 But worth it to be living there at this moment.

Stayed with Rene and Babs last night, Rene treated us to a whole bunch of different Dutch cheeses. After a lie in, we made our way to Stanley, to the Sea School to move into our new accomodation with Bill the principle. It is freezing here, like 10 degrees. Much to my surprise after last year’s heat, and to the surprise of my packing skills, and very light and therefore empty bag… Perfect excuse to go past Stanley Market and SHOP for a warm top…

Some Chinese food for lunch (no chicken feet this time), and a fun paddle, and now I can feel that time difference setting in 😦  

Map of race course below, good winds predicted… See http://www.thedragonrun.com.hk/ for the race website.