my world championships did not go anywhere near to what i had desired. maybe closer to what i deserved though. i have no one to blame but myself. my trip to worlds began 5 days before the race was supposed to start. i tried to stay at school as late as i could (this was before i dropped out) and go just in time for the race. backfire.

i got stuck in the airport for a whole day in new york. down to 4 days of training. arrival: venice airport baggage claim, boat-smashed, bag with both clothes and paddling gear- no where to be found. me- after nearly 48 hours of swamp ass and traveling, beginning to wear out. boat repair takes one day- down the three days of training, including the shorter 40 minute session on the last day. training goes well, in borrowed gear and the boxers i wore in the airport as paddling shorts. bag finally shows up in time for one short session in my own gear before the race. at this point, i have no choice but to smile at the situation.

my qualifier was o.k. i paddled pretty well with decent times, but couldn't stay off the gates. penalty seconds cost me dearly and i barely advanced to the semi-final. with advancing being the only real goal, i was ok with it. due to massive amounts of rain and water fluctuation problems, i had four days in between my qualifier and the semi-final which turned into a challenge in and of itself, trying to stay active yet rested for all that time. thursday was great though, the water was too high to have any racing at all and my teammates and i got to enjoy an unexpected surfing session on the river below the course (pictured on the banner of my profile page).

finally, came the semifinal. i was off from the beginning. i bled time from the very first upstream and by half way down when i got my act together it was too late to even salvage my dignity. but going into winter training with a chip on my shoulder isn't a bad thing. i was mad at myself at the bottom for screwing up and still am. time to put it use.

the weekend after i returned home from the worlds was the weekend of the gauley river festival in near summersville, WV. i had a great time decompressing after the worlds and paddling some high volume water in my slalom boat. right now, it's almost time for US slalom nationals near washington D.C. after two days in a row of running great falls in the morning and paddling slalom at the Dickerson slalom course in the afternoon, i'm pretty excited for the race.

more on US nationals to come soon...

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