San Francisco (Lake Merced) | Sept 29-30
|Rec A Mixed||4th (2:11.21)|
|Intl Championship||3rd (2:19.41)|
|Mens||Preliminary 3||2nd (2:13.40)|
|Womens||Preliminary 3||2nd (2:37.86)|
The race board for the Open and Women's races were brutal. The men's and women's races had three preliminary rounds. You had to place 1st to move on with one wild card.
Our warm up routines used to be almost magical in their abilty to draw a crowd. There was a physical poetry as we moved through the positions forming human mandalas on the grass.
Some of these photos were used for banquet awards at the end of the year. I recall one image Leon manipulated to look like the person was skydiving -- it was beautiful. Sometimes I miss these stretches . . .
Lake Merced was a very green venue. A vast departure from the asphalt and concrete from the Long Beach Marine Stadium. There was a short stretch of sandy beach from which you could watch the races. It was a very mellow race locale, and had some massage tents and a local restaurant/bar that Eddy promptly took a liking to.
Our team was still in recreational size -- in the mid 30s. Some of us wanted so bad to race more competitively but it just isn't feasible in a team fielding one boat and while we faired okay in the races, it was clear that not everyone had the competitive drive to train non-stop. It was a delicate balancing act for this year as the officers balanced the divergent needs of competitive and recreational paddlers.
We ate well, played with Petey (I miss that dog) and learned much from this race. It was the closing race for the season and afterwards we launched a ferocious effort in expanding the team so that we could accomodate both types of racers.