Arrived home from the 11 Cities on Monday 9th September and had a race planned for Saturday 14th September.
The last thing I wanted to do was go paddling, but thought one more race and then I can rest. The race was a Survivor race and the plan was to have 2 survivor heats and then a final race. In each heat we lost two paddlers, therefore had 6 females in the final. The course distance was 800 metres, so fast and furious.
I still had shoulder and back pain from the 11 Cities, so really didn’t know how I would paddle in this race. Also this was a 12’6 race so had to paddle a borrowed board that Starboard UK kindly lent me, but I did make sure I had my Black Project WQ8 race fin. Running with the board for the beach start was a killer, so quickly got in the water and on the board. My heart rate was pounding at 180-190 bpm and I was paddling with the fastest cadence I could. This race was the polar opposite of the 11 Cities. I finished the first heat in 3rd place and was exhausted. The strategy I was planning in my head was to complete the 2nd heat in 3rd place, which should enable me to get nearly 2 minutes rest and then push in the final. There was only two minutes between the first person finishing the heat and the next heat starting. Finished the 2nd heat in 3rd place again. Now it was time to put my plan into action. Paddle hard in the final. I got a bad start in the final and was the last person standing on their board. I caught up with the lead pack at the first buoy, but there were still three people in front of me. Between the first and second mark I kept paddling at a steady speed and knew that I would have to sprint at some time to get ahead. I rounded the 2nd mark and increased my speed. It only took 30 seconds of flat out paddling to break away from a couple of people. I was now in second place and there was good gap between myself and 3rd place. I finished the race with a run and crossed the line in 2nd place.
Now it is time to rest. I am flying to Singapore for the Grand Prix and then onto Thailand for some training in the warm weather.