Writing from a paddlers perspective, there was an atmosphere of resigned amusement hanging over the event. Pretty much everyone held on to their common sense, and thanks to the quick reactions of all involved, we were able to do a single, final-style run on Saturday. Sunday was less fraught, but had the equally annoying problem of the river dropping about a metre from the start of the race to the finish. But true to the laws of canoeing, the most flexible, capable paddlers won each discipline, adapting to the conditions and being surprised by nothing.
I came away from the weekend with mixed feelings. On the one hand, I had runs which would have put me respectively third on Saturday and fourth on Sunday. WOULD. Except for the mystic situation I managed to get myself into on gate three, on all three runs of the weekend, costing me two half-heads (fifty second penalties), and a beautiful down in the eddy (when you're supposed to go upstream through it, its a fifty second penalty). Being aware that I am racing fast enough to medal is wonderful, and extremely irritating when you consider the fact I had three otherwise clean runs, with a monumental mistake in each.
Although without sounding too annoyed, I actually had a great time. I love racing Tully, mostly because its my home water. But also its the only race of the year I get to stay at home, and chill out with my family and boyfriend during the lead up and inevitable come-down. Truly, it was wonderful being absolutely sure of myself on the start line, and knowing that no matter what, the important things never change.
I've had a lot of really nice comments, messages, and feedback from my last post. It's pretty amazing to realise how many people can be touched by what you write, especially when it's something you aren't 100% sure anyone else will connect with. It turns out food is something that almost EVERYONE I know connects with, in some strong way. There's always some element of uncertainty in sporting life, and unfortunately, due to the British education system, there is no way of educating people in how to look after themselves. Healthy lifestyles are perceived to be for athletes. Active lifestyles are for 'outdoor people' or 'gym junkies' or 'green smoothie tribe'. Have a look in my 'Eat Well' section for a recipe that I've found useful recently.
Actually, everyone's entitled to being healthy, active, happy human beings. There are thousands of different ways of doing this, and if you're willing to have a look, there will definitely be one that fits you. It doesn't have to be difficult, or a struggle. I do canoeing because I love canoeing, even when its snowing and the gates are all in the water because I forgot that it rained hard overnight and should have raised the poles an extra half metre.
But anyway, racing season has started! And its amazing to be on the start line again. See you in London :D