9 May 2013 - Thurday 'Ben' kayak training

I look forward to these Thursday afternoon sessions.  They have the intensity of a race every week and leave me stuffed afterwards BUT if you miss the session you know that everyone who went is getting an advantage on you.

Tonight there was a really good turnout of 20+ paddlers.  We headed down to the pontoon off Sthn HQ in groups of 4 or 5 ish in lines - with the back paddler doing sprints to the front of the line then easing back to about 8km/h so the new back paddler can sprint up.

Once at the pontoon we did 2 x 2km efforts - with fastest going off last & chasing.  The went around the corner to the right - to the orange yacht buoy then out to the Garrow then back to the pontoon.

We had a couple of minutes break before the next one.  On each lap the fastest guys were catching everyone by the Garrow area & the buoy turns were good practice for race turns with the congestion.

At the end of the second one I had finished hard enough that I thought I would puke.  The smell of all the bird poo on the pontoon didn't help.

I had been paddling my bandit which I find very comfortable in any conditions.  It isn't the fastest thing I could use in flat water (Chrono or Evolution Edge) but it is stable in the dark & your legs stay warmer than on a ski.  Bucks was in my 'spare' Evo Edge & looked good at he cruised past me with it slicing through the water.

At the moment I am stuck on an average speed of 11.5km/h for longer efforts with the Bandit.  This will improve as I do more paddling over winter (& hopefully lose a few kg).

I will probably use the Chrono in the next Huon race.  It is narrower, has less drag and is a 2 or 3kg lighter but is a bit tippier.  I can accelerate it more easily too.  I would like to use the Evo Edge but it is a little snug to sit in & hard to rotate & get good leg drive because it is a snug fit.  The cockpit entry is a small one too which is great for keeping the splash out but hard to get in on a steep river bank.