Its almost exactly a week since I got back from Team Trials on the Nantahala. Its a long time since I've been down there, but I'm glad I did go this year. My motivation since getting back from Tasmania has been severely lacking. This is due, in part, to the fact that I am not racing internationally this year, at least in wildwater. So putting myself through the wringer, getting up early in awful weather to train, and cutting all kinds of tasty things from my diet has become more difficult. Add to that some weather issues (4 feet of snow blocked parking anywhere near a training site for a few weeks) and a back/neck injury and I'm a fat boater again with waning physical fitness. So, my trip to the Nantahala was supposed to help me regain my enthusiasm for racing now that the weather is getting better and I'm dealing with my back issues.
For those of you who have raced on the Nantahala the idea of going there to gain motivation may seem a bit nonsensical. But, it kind of worked. It was nice to hang out with racers again, and it made me think about my training regimen carefully, so that I will (hopefully) be in good form for Team Trials/Nationals on the Skigat in early November. My results in the sprint were about as good as I could have expected. I was about 5% back from Peter Lutter in a non-technical sprint that was about 70-80 seconds long. If the race had been longer I think I would have been quite a bit further back, but I felt fast and my boat control wasn't horrible (but it could be quite a bit better). The Classic was significantly worse, reflecting a lack of fitness, as well as the fact that a 13 minute race on a shallow course doesn't suit a short armed fat balding guy (the lack of hair doesn't seem to make that much difference). I was over 8% back, which ended up as over a minute back from a resurgent JP Bevilaqua, and behind Tom Wier. I figured Tom would beat me, but I still didn't like it. So now I know how much work I have to do. Hopefully it will get done.