Wednesday, 11 May 2016


Tonight was my first 4km time trial after DW. My aim was the same as it has been for every time trial at the moment, to be under 30 minutes. It's elusive, but that's my aim.

I paddled it in 32.35 tonight, a minute and half slower than my pb. It had been raining for the past 2 days, and the river was flowing fast. You never really realise how fast it is until you try to go under the bridge at Foley. I struggled to get under the bridge, with the flow pushing me to the right, after the bridge came the turn, I didn't make the turn, at this point the flow was pushing me to the left, towards moored boats and the edge of the island. Flashback to DW time, flow, moored boats and me and Shadow. I can't recall how I got out of the situation this time and that's an odd feeling, I remember starting to turn Shadow and I remember being the other side of the bridge and that's it. 

Tonight I was wobbly and fearful of falling in. But that's, what I need to do, to regain some of my confidence, I need to fall out of Shadow. 

So Shadows' and my story continues...

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

DW, the write up

Maybe, just maybe it is time to start writing up my DW story.

A little bit of info about me, for those of you who do not know me, or who haven't read about me. I am a C1 paddler. I paddle. That's the basics. Ive been told I'm modest, and I know I'm pretty quiet. As for racing, yes, I race, I race unintentionally slowly.  Over a month on I cannot get my head round how much I have achieved. And no, I had no idea whats so ever that I would appear on a magazine cover or that people would be reading about my racing journey on Facebook, yes, that defiantly made the series races interesting - oh I've read about you and you're the one that is going for a record.

My DW journey started a few years ago, standing in the cold, putting food in paddlers mouths and trying my best to cheer on crews, whilst panicking about making it to the next support point on time. For some reason, whilst standing there watching various crews pass, I always felt that the C1 paddlers made things look easy. All this was pre Shadow, pre training and pre support crew.

The build up to DW consisted of 6 races in 2 different series. Anyway, I won them both and became the first female C1 paddler to complete the Thameside series ever!

People ask if I've recovered from DW, physically, yes, mentally, no.

DW, well, what can/should I say? It was hard, frustrating and awesome, all rolled into 3 adrenaline filled days. My DW race ended quite dramatically, and I still might not be fully recovered from the mental scars. Day 1 and 2 though, I loved, charging along the canal portaging Shadow and waiting for the C1 men to overtake.

I think that the majority of people this year feel that they have unfinished business with the race. No-one except the overnight crews were able to complete the full distance. I personally would have been chuffed to finish at the end of Day 3 (I remain terrified of the still unknown Tideway).

So next year? I would like to reach the 100 mile mark at least next time. I now have a different boat and a nutter who will help steer us to Westminster, I think we have everything prepared except for.... a support crew, so who is up for it???

Friday, 19 February 2016


So it's been too long since I last wrote here.

The world of boating and Shadow have speed up ten fold recently. We are now in serious training for DW this Easter. Yes, that is as scary as it sounds.

This month in preparation for Easter we have been racing every weekend. I have started the Waterside series and have come 1st in the ladies C1 class in the first 2 races. I have also raced the first of the Thameside series, this was a scary race! Rushing water, quick boats and wind. Shadow did not like it and threw me in a few times, but I finished the race!

Waterside winners mugs

Finally finished the scariest race ever!

I just hope there is more water on the actual race course!

Sunday, 9 August 2015

Coaching future Olympians

This weekend, I spent some time 'coaching' a possible future Olympic paddler in Shadow. 


I now know that, Shadow can be paddled, sitting in the bottom of the boat, on your knees and by sitting backwards in the boat and paddling it backwards! And he is stable enough for you to stand up in. 

I'm glad the stability of the boat has been proven to me, now what excuse can I use the next time I throw myself out the boat?!

Adding weight?!

So Shadow has been loaned a spraydeck and a wooden kayak seat. I've been going with the theory that by changing anything on the boat will add weight and adding weight is never a good thing. But, I may be proven wrong, the seat ensures that I am sitting in the center of the boat, but is slippy. The spreaydeck is a beast to put on, but keeps my feet dry. Time will tell, how these new additions fair.


10 mile time trial times so far:

Worcester: 1hr 55 (I still don't think that this is the correct time)
Reading: 2 hr 03
Wokingham: 1hr 57
Richmond: 2hr 01

There is a sense of achievement upon meeting up with kayakers who have struggled with 7km hasler races after we have just completed 10 miles.

Displaying Photo0111.jpg

Sunday, 31 May 2015

Worcester 10 mile tt

First national canoe 10 mile time trial

Well done Shadow, you did well. I was the only female paddler and set the benchmark time of 1 hour 55. It was tough and I hurt, but it was done. Those last 2 miles always seem to be the toughest :\

Photo to be added at some future point.