Thursday, June 22, 2011- Just back from my Prelims Rides… Stephen, Dustin, and I have already competed- 7:40am. It is sunny and hot out- BEAUTIFUL weather and great energy and crowd here. My warm up went well. I showed up after breakfast and BAM, it was time to get my gear on and warm up. That was a little too close for comfort. I didn’t even look at the time and am glad I wasn’t late. I was a little nervous, but not too bad. It was great to look up at the sun, then at Kristine, and the judges on the way into the hole. This is a wonderful place to be in life. Game time, no way to call a time out, and lots of pressure, from within, from the outside, and yet it is all in the name of fun. Every two years this opportunity comes up, but only after making the USA National Team. This world championships has some MAJOR unknown factors- like “Will we have a semi-finals and finals tomorrow, or will we only compete today and will the ICF call this competition short? “ At 2pm we’ll get the final weather report for tonight/tomorrow. It is expected that major thunderstorms are rolling in tonight and huge rains tomorrow. They think it will flood the event site by tomorrow afternoon. (all of the tents, grandstands, vendors, etc. underwater in current). If that projection still holds true at 2pm the expectation is that the quarter finals for each class will be the finals. The good news is that this call by the ICF will be done BEFORE we compete in quarterfinals. Everyone will know going INTO quarterfinals that this round is for the title. My class, Men’s K1 is expected to START quarterfinals at 8pm. It may well already be raining, lightning, windy, etc.. and DARK by then. Will the lights work? Will the rain mess up the computers in the scoring tent (blowing rains?) etc.. There will be a ton of folks FREAKING OUT this afternoon. Calm nerves and being able to go with the flow and adapt are traits that will improve one’s chances of success today.
I went for my Huge/Clean Air loop to Air Screw Combo move and it felt good on my first ride. Everthing went well until my right mcnasty and I flushed and by the time I got back in I tried it again and failed. 500 points on my first ride, clearly my air screw didn’t count, but I didn’t know my first ride score before doing my second ride so I did it again.
Second Ride was better- I didn’t flush, but still didn’t score my airscrew, and my right mcnasty stuck dead straight, but not aerial enough to count. 960 points on my second ride. I am in second place after 5 heats. Stephen is in first place with 1600 points and I am in second with 1460. This is fine for making the next round, likely in the top heat (top 5). Hard to say how everyone else will do. All of the top ICF officials are here watching . It is great to see Richard Fox here again (my hero in slalom) and now a big gun at the ICF.
I am back at the hotel and will try to take a nap. No more than 6 hours of sleep last night as I had a late night and early morning. Not a great idea for me to stay at the river and watch and cheer everyone on today like I did yesterday. Clay just went without me there. I got to watch his first ride on LIVE STREAMING video on the website, cool! He did great. Dustin did not do his best work, but a bad ride for Dustin is still something most athletes would want to achieve!
Next update will be after my Quarter-finals, which may be the Medal round, we’ll see!