Leaving on a Jetplane…

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I am off in one month to go and race my Nelo Ski and K1 in Europe. So excited:)

Thanks to Cátia at Nelo for putting up with my many “change my mind” incidents, and booking my flights.

So first up is the Nelo Summer Challenge. It is going to be an unbelievable event, the guys at Nelo are going out of their way to put on something super special. Personally I am very excited to race all the Flatwater Girls in the Sea:)

Click on the image for the race website and more info

Then it is off to the Algarve for the Race of Champions.

Click on the image for the race website. Portugal seems to be the place to be over the European summer.

I then have a 3 week wait for the World Marathon Championships in Banyoles, Spain.

Team SA is looking good, with some old faces back in the mix.

With such a long wait I might just be heading to the Islands for another race 🙂 … More info soon.

And then, the greatest South African River Race on the calender… da da dum:

The Hansa/Powerade Fish River Marathon. I will basically land from Spain, and drive straight from the airport to make the start of the race. I wouldn’t miss it for the world 🙂

Next post, the guys at Thule (namely Richard Downey) sent me some awesome stuff. Just taking some photo’s and will post soonest!

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SA Marathon Team announced

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The team has been announced finally.

See below:

MARATHON TEAM SELECTED FOR THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS IN SPAIN
UNDER 18 MEN /                                                          WOMEN
K1 Brandon Van Der Walt /                                      Kerry Segal
K1 Gavin Shuter /                                                         Malanie Van Niekerk
K2 Brandon Van Der Walt / Ivan Kruger            Emma Horner / Jenna Ward
K2 Joseph Williams / Diviono Pieterson

UNDER 23  MEN/WOMEN
K1 Grant Van Der Walt                                                Bianca Bevitt
K1 Lance King
SENIOR MEN
K1 Marc Holtzhausen                                                  Michele Eray
K1 Hank McGregor
K2 E van Riet / H Schloms                                        Lindi-May Harmse / Abie Adie
K2 Ant Stott / Graeme Solomon
SUB VET
K1 Dave Hamilton Brown                                          Antje Manfroni
K1 Warren Valentine
K2 Warren Valentine / Marc Germiquet            Anna Clifford / Antje Manfroni
K2 Dave Hamilton Brown / Wayne Wilson        Cavill Cordes / Lorna Oliver
VETERAN
K1 Wayne Wilson                                                          Janine Linder
K1 Marc Bosch                                                           Joanne Daneel

K2                                                                                        Hilda Lapere / Janine Linder
K2 Steve Cohen / Travis Wilkinson                       Joanne Daneel / Beth Burton
SUB MASTER
K1 Hennie Roos
K1 Flip De Wet
CI Radoslaw Olszewski
K2 TC Smit / Ronald Pronk
K2 Hennie Roos / Richard Tebbutt
MASTER
K1 TC Smit                                                                        Katarzyna Lapaz
K1                                                                                         Louise Devilliers
K2 Rob Welsh / Markus Burri Katarzyna Lapacz / Louise De Villiers
K2 Peter Duncan / Linton Hope
SUB GRAND MASTER
K1 Rob Maclean                                                             Beth Burton
K1 Tim Cornish
K2 Rob Maclean / Andre Rabie
K2 Allan Hold / Geoff Thompson
GRAND MASTER
K1 Roeloff Van Riet

Well done to all the ECCU members (in BOLD)!

World Marathon Champs are in Banyoles, Spain from 22-26 September. See www.banyoles2010.cat for more info.

Interesting choices, not sure if I was a selector that I would do the same, but I suppose I am not a selector 🙂

Vichy won’t be hosting the World Canoe Sprint Champs next year, which was going to serve as the Olympic Qualifying event. Wonder who will get to host it now?

Character building?

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So the K2 race didn’t quite happen. I woke up feeling well recovered from the singles, and pretty pumped to give the doubles a good go. Bridgie and I felt solid in the boat, and we were really getting excited at teh thought of a god fight. We had a great start, and got onto a nice diamond behind the Portuguese crew. Then disaster struck. The boat veered right, I managed to control it and tried to get us back on the diamond, but suddenly we veered left. That’s when I realised the steering was gone! The T-Bar mechansim had come loose. We stopped and went to the bank, where I managed to sort it out, but the gap was now massive. We started paddling again, and considered chasing the group down. We were so disappointed, and the thought of a long, solitary paddle wasn’t helping, especially after the day before’s effort. Also, we knew we should be in the front bunch, not right at the back. After half a lap, we bailed.

We decided to move on immediatley, and look forward not backwards, as there is nothing we could do about it now. So, 2010, Barcelona here we come. I am taking from this year’s race what I can, and am going to use it to make sure that I am super ready for next time.
duoro river Shaun and Ant had a great race and ended up 2nd to a very fast Spanish crew. Hank and Grant had probably the race of the day, and came back after a terrible start, and finished up 5th. 
Next up is the Fish River Marathon, next Friday and Saturday:)

10th

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Just a quick report back on the race:

Not a great start, but had Hank´s words ringing in my ears, “Don´t worry if you are off at the start, you have 5 laps to catch up”. So I took it easy, until after the first portage. A German woman had a bad takeout, so I hopped on her wave, and she pulled me up to Bridge, and within striking distance of the 2nd bunch. The front bunch was made up of 3 boats-Hungarian Renata, a British paddler and local hero from Portugal Beatriz Gomes.

Anyway, I messed up the turn, getting a little squeezed at the turning cans, ending up losing my ride tothe 2nd bunch. Spent the rest of the race in good company with one of Polands marathon legends, and we ended up catching Bridgette, and finished 8th, 9th, and 10th. Beatriz won for Portugal!

Shaun finished 4th, behind Busto, Ben Brown and a Portuguese guy, with Len in 10th. More later, plus  photos.

Now its time to recover for the K2 with Bridge tomorrow.

Portugal

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Loving this place so far, the people are super friendly, we are staying in a top hotel (thanks CSA), our team is doing well (more on that later).

The course is pretty tricky, with a very steep portage, on a slippery jetty, then onto sand for the downhill to the beach. I am unfortunately racing at low tide (1245 Sat K1 and 1100 Sun K2), which makes that jetty even steeper, and exposes some obstacles, but its the same for everyone in my race.

Grant van der Walt won the Mens U23 and his brother Brandon “Stomach” won the Junior Mens K1! Awesone stuff!

Tomorrow its the Junior K2 in the morning, then the Senior Men and Women K1 events from lunch.

 Its been great catching up with old friends from around the world. Now its time to race!!

If you would like to watch the event live, there is video streaming on the ICF website – www.canoeicf.com

Plett :)

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I am back in Plett, after an epic 12.5hr drive through the most amazing part of South Africa-the Transkei.

Training on the Keurbooms River

Training on the Keurbooms River

 Forgot how beautiful Plett is. The weather has been great so far. On my first day back I had a run along the beach, and spotted a Southern Right Whale just 10m from the shore! Awesome 🙂

Bit of a monstrous coldfront pulling through as I type, going to test my dedication to a paddle today. The spin bike could be a good alternative…

Leave for Portugal on Monday coming, here is the race website for more info:

http://www.canoemarathonwc2009.com/

Here’s a picture of the stunning Keurbooms River (doubt it will look like that today…)

Keurbooms River