Vancouver, BC - June 20-21
|Black||Comp A Championship||8th (1:59.25)|
|Guts & Glory||8th (10:35.70)|
|Red||Rec A Championship||1st (2:01.84)|
|Men||Open Championship||7th (2:01.87)|
|Women||Rec A Championship||1st (2:20.03)|
Hope y'all arrived home safely, and are easing back into work with healthy distractions of reflecting upon another fun and memorable weekend of paddling and traveling with the crew, whether it was your very first Rio Tinto Alcan Festival, or for some, your 10th visit to False Creek. As my first race of the '09 season with the team, I can only begin to describe how complete the trip felt by saying that it was filled with so many experiences, both on and off the boat, that remind me of just how unique this team is, and what it is that makes us...LARD.
With regards to competition, I feel this has been our strongest showing thus far. LARD was 7 years old when we finally reached club crew heaven by becoming Rec A Champs in '05. To have fielded 2 crews this past weekend that affirmed our place in two highly competitive mixed divisions at this venue is something everyone should feel proud of. Having said that, I hope you share the same sentiment that we are capable of even more!
Selflessness, teamwork (1/4 of Red crew we just met Fri afternoon/Sat morning!), camaraderie, establishing new friendships, continuing long-standing ones, adapting from race-to-race, paddling with spirit/heart/inspiration/fire/fortitude....these are all elements of our team's personality that shined throughout the weekend. And as we came together post-G-'n-G to close out the weekend, it was particularly poignant to hear Debbi, one of our newest 'local' teammates to come aboard for the Women's crew, remark upon how unique it was--relative to most other paddling clubs she's been involved with--to see how much we supported one another as a team, rather than a group of individual crews. For me, it was definitely a this-is-why-I-heart-LARD-moment. Thank you, team.
Last but not least, a huge THANKS to....
- our newly-acquired Alcan teammates and B(DB)FFs Albert C, Ivan B, Debbi, Kim, Doug U, Doug M, Paul: Consider yourselves LARDmates, in this growing paddling community I know we will cross paths again.
- fellow coaches: Scott (HPC liason, the guy traveled injured just to coach, and indirectly, inspire), Chuck (seating genius, coordinating with volunteers), Otto (seating and steering stud), and Leon (motivational/steering guru, post-race events coordinator)
- Mike Young and HPC for developing specific programs that help us to expand our potential and perform beyond our expectations
- directors: Jessica (joining us from Seattle) and Evelyn for being our race managers and keeping us informed with the latest stats/times of our upcoming races. Diane, for being our travel manager and securing our comfy lodgings so far in advance, we are all wishing you a speedy recovery and look forward to seeing you back on the boat! Lilly for lugging our paddles to-and-from YVR, Directors for arranging Sat night dinner...
- Phil, and those who helped in taking pics, for capturing invaluable footage of our races. We have a lot to learn from them, and they'll undoubtedly help in preparing us for our upcoming races...
Can you feel her pain?
That's strawberry juice btw
As you guys know, my wife Lisa was at the Vancouver race wearing a LARD team jersey.
She said that on numerous occasions during the weekend, strangers would come up to her because she was wearing the LARD uniform and ask her when LARD was racing b/c they wanted to check LARD out.
I guess you can say that we have some racing admirers in Vancouver.
Also, our guest paddler Kim also shared the same sentiments that our guest paddler Debbie felt on her speech at the end of the weekend. Kim says she's paddled with numerous other teams as a guest paddler in other races throughout N. America and we are the 1st team she felt really treated everyone on the team (Black or Red) as an important and vital member of the team.
She wants to start a team in Vancouver and she says she definitely wants to model it after our team.
Turning in Guts and Glory
This speaks volumes for our team leaders and for our team members.
Good job, LARD.
This was my 9th trip to Vancouver and it was just exciting as my first one here!
My kids had just as much fun watching us paddle and they say they now want to join us every year---uh, oh!
Thanks guys for a great weekend and for giving me a chance to paddle with you guys again. It's a pleasure being able to host you guys and show you guys Vancouver. I only wish we had more time and I did not have to work on Monday to be able to show you guys more of Vancouver and maybe even invite you guys over to my place for dinner. Let me know when you guys are back in town and I will invite you guys over to my place. It's far away from town but I'm near the mountains and lakes and we do have everything here and it's not that bad in the boonies.
Guys, I'm really planning to head down to CA in December to spend Xmas there as my company usually have about 1.5 weeks shutdown days and we have no plans in Vancouver, so we thought it would be a good chance to visit you guys and to get away from the cold here. Will keep you guys posted.
Anyways, congrats to all LARDs for a sucessful race in Vancouver and good times and friendships. Having a medal with you guys this weekend has brought many memories to me when we first met in Portland. You guys are awesome and it's tempting me to move down to CA so that I can paddle with you guys....
Cheers ~ Ivan
row 2: Aileen, Doug, ??, Ken, Luke Feng, Jim, Cheryl
row 1: Karen, Jeff, Kimm, Alison, C-dub, Greg, Debbie, Ivan Boh, ??
Jenny Wright (TD)