Saturday, 19 September 2009

Fleetwood Seaquest - 19th September 2009

Another week, another race!... no more for a while now I think.

The Fleetwood Seaquest is a kayak orienteering event that starts on Fleetwood's main beach, then turns and goes up the Wyre Estuary. Total distance for the longer "seaquest" is 22kms, while the shorter "seatour" is 15kms.

About 50 paddlers lined up for the "Le Mans" style start and after a brief holdup when another kayak put in beside me and sunk my paddle, I was off. Fairly quickly Glen Parry in his surf ski, Ned (Nick Price) from Macclesfield CC and I were jostling for the lead as we crossed the mouth of the estuary to go to the first checkpoint. Glen made the shortest work of it (no spraydeck!) and took a lead that he maintained through the next few checkpoints as we headed to the turning point at Shard Bridge. I was second with Ned not far behind. At the bridge I clipped the control quickly and left the control ahead of Glen and then managed to keep the lead on the return leg to finish just ahead of Glen with Ned a little behind us. My time was 2hr 14min.

It was nice to win a race outright, but shows the difference in standard between the races down south (see Eddystone and Poole race articles). Glen and I were also in the best boats - if Ned was in my Epic he would have been well ahead.

I won a £30 Brookbank gift voucher, a small shield to keep, plus I get my name engraved on the perpetual trophy shield that stays with the club. So not a bad day out. Thanks to the Outdoor Adventure Group for organising the event. Next year's race is on September 11th 2010.

Sunday, 13 September 2009

Poole Harbour Canoe Race - 13th September 2009

Paddled the 15 mile "sea kayak" class, but this was mainly dominated by skis. There seems to be quite a popular surf ski racing scene down south and there must have been around a dozen in the field.

My time was 2 hours and 24 minutes, pretty much what I was expecting, although this was about 40 minutes behind the winner (Ian Lawler).

Conditions were quite choppy in places with quite a strong F4-5 NE wind.

There must have been about 50-60 paddlers across the various classes. Great cake and burger at the end and a friendly atmosphere with numerous supporters on the beach at the finish.

Had a short paddle with Allen then Gavin after the race. Long drive home though...

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Macclesfield Canal - 7th September 2009

Usual training paddle, Clarke Lane <=> Higher Poynton Marina.
Out in 54.00, but one significant boat delay that meant the likely time would have been around 53. Bit more leisurely on the way back on reaching the massed flotilla of the MADCC at Bollington.

Pretty dark around 8.20pm, will need to use lights in the evening now.

Saturday, 5 September 2009

Macclesfield Canal - 4th September 2009

Clarke Lane <=> Higher Poynton Marina.

Out in 53.00.. new PB. Back in about 57, but a few significant boat delays. Also not been out in the evening for a couple of weeks and didn't realise how much the nights are closing in. Finished pretty much in the dark just before 8.30.

Purchased some new Bracsa VIII wings after loosing the last ones on the Eddystone. Assembled them myself this time, making them slightly longer in the shaft. Also the blades are the slightly larger "max" size. I think overall length ended up around 213cm. Still have a few more cm of adjustment (longer) if needed.