14th November saw Round one of the Frostbite Race series. A collection of races around the UK with points going towards a combine league table.
14th of November also happened to be my Birthday, most people spend their Birthdays drinking, eating & chilling out, I spent it freezing my ass off in the cold November rain 🙂
My local club BaySup were hosting the event at the Hengistbury Head Adventure centre. The weekend before we’d met to decide the format & race courses, but we arrived early to get organised, set up the shelters, BBQ etc. It was a still but dull start to the day, but before we knew it the rain set in for the day.
The event was purely sprint based. 3 Heats with point scores for positions & ultimate positions determined from results across the 3 heats.
Round 1 was a short course, about 1/2 a mile, round a channel bouy and back. It was a frantic pace, flat out to the first bouy, close racing, about 4 of us battling for position on the turn, paddle clashing, Ryan James the first victim to fall! The sprint back I managed to hold for 4th position, close racing!
Round 2 was the distance race just over 1 mile. I got a great start & held position with the top guys. As we headed down the back straight we all made a slight error & went one bouy too far, still we all did the same route. The pace was hard throughout. I placed an excellent third, very close to Charlie & Mark who took top honors.
After a bit of a rest & the finals of the novice classes we lined up for the final heat. A mid distance race taking a different route. I got a shocking start getting caught in the chop & wash from some of the other riders. At the first turn I dug deep & pulled a couple of positions back getting into 4th. At the final turn I was really close to John Hibbard. We battled right to the very finish & I managed to take him a few yard from the line to get a third.
Due to the overall points system & the finishing order from the last race I missed out on a podium by a mere 2 Points! Gutted but the lesson is never leave it to the overall scores, get the best position every race!
The day was a huge success for the sport in the UK with over 35 paddlers in the various classes. A huge number of new paddlers gave it a go despite the freezing & wet conditions. My other half Ruth even managed to place joint 2nd in the ladies novice, so totally stoked for her 🙂
Round 2 of Frostbite in just two weeks down in South Devon, bring it on!
Overall event position 4th.
Series Points 1200
Overall series position 4th
Full results & breakdown here: http://standuppaddlesurf.co.uk/home/1-latest-news/266-results-in