Vancouver - June 19 & 20
Rockin hair Canada style
|Black||500m Comp B||2nd (2:12:31)|
|Red||500m Rec A||6th (2:17:03)|
|Men||500m Open||8th overall (2:27:68)|
|Women:||500m Rec B||1st (2:27:68)|
|Black:||Guts and Glory||6th (11:59:60)|
Vancouver is a great measuring stick. It is how we knew we were rising up through the ranks of the community. It's how we gained traction in name and team recognition, not just amongst our local peers, but internationally. It's how we've met many new friends (you'll be fortunate to meet a couple of them), who have helped us competitively and whose relationship we appreciate personally. It's how we've represented as LARD annually.
It's this representation that I'd like to reiterate. I don't know what the placing is going to be (though I'll be following with great interest off of Scott's twitter feed). Yet ultimately the placing isn't the end goal. What I DO KNOW is this; you will paddle with passion, you will be paddling to improve, you will paddle and fight for each other, you will be surprised at what successes you achieve through your collective commitments. But it's not uncommon. It's how LARD represents, this race and every race. It's what we do.
Guts and Glory
So it won't be different at Vancouver this year. Though I already know that this is what's going to happen, it's always great to see and experience it firsthand.
Have a blast, all. I'm sure you will thoroughly enjoy your experience. Take care of yourselves and your teammate; we can't wait for the stories and pictures.
Leon & Wynne & your soon-to-be new cheerleader!
photos by Scott Wu
This year introduced a new piece of LARD gear. The hoody! Or is it hoodie? Anyhoo, this fantastic new piece of LARDwear was envisioned by our very own Scott Wu with the help of Kenny Kim providing modified graphics of our team logo.
While all agree that this is one sharp piece of LARDwear, we all found the Under Armour sizing to be a little on the small size. For example, Kenny who normally wears a large or xlarge purchased an xlarge and found to his chargrin that yes it was possible to force his fat head through the neck hole but found himself stuck requiring the help of others to remove what was supposed to be a hoody but was now a straight-jacket from his person. Others who aren't so horizontally challenged had similar problems to a lesser degree except those who purchased the zip-up hoodies.
Fun team photo
If you didn't have the opportunity to head up to Vancouver this year, you missed it. What is "it"?
1. You missed paddling with and getting to know our fantastic guest paddlers from places like Vancouver, Calgary, Boston, Long Beach, Oregon, and San Francisco. We had paddle reps for both Burnwater and Kialoa on our boat. All of these athletes from all over North America came together this past weekend to paddle as one. Frankly, it was simply amazing. LARD's performance this weekend would not have been possible without the generous help of all of our guests. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Like it or not, you are now part of LARD's extended family. ;)
2. You missed witnessing the great efforts from all of our crews - Red, Black, Women, and Men. Everyone paddled with heart earning very impressive finishes - Red placed 3rd in the Rec A Championship, Black placed 2nd in Comp B Championship, Women - 1st Place Rec Women's Division, and our Men qualified for the Open Final. Also, several of our paddlers got to paddle Guts and Glory for the first time!
3. You missed the man - Jorge CRUSHING 2 scoops of wasabi. If you haven't seen it, I posted it on Facebook. Classic!
4. You missed the blur that was the Beer Garden - the first ever LARD team picture in the Garden, the first ever LARD Coach beer bong race, and dancing like mad people on the dance floor. Who ever knew Angel had such moves? :)
5. (fill in with your favorite Vancouver moment)
That being said, although I am very proud of the way we paddled (and partied), I know that we can be better and faster as a team. I think all those that paddled this past weekend realize the same thing. We have not reached our potential - nowhere close. In order to get to where we want to go, you need to figure out how you are going to make your team better. It's time to commit to each other.
I hope to see you all out as we prepare to protect our house as the Long Beach Tournament approaches.
So proud of all of you,
LARD Women's First Place Medal
Wow, is right.
From the donning of the new LARD hoodies at LAX to the last Japa Dog eaten on the way back to YVR, another exciting chapter of the LARD journey was recorded.
I would like to give a special shout out to our race coordinators; Coaches - Scott, Chuck & Jason and Race Managers - Vi, Diane & Jessica. To Karen for organizing the team dinners and helping schlep the team paddles along with sister Crystal. Without all of you we wouldn't have had the togetherness and success we experienced in Vancouver.
TeamLARD (this includes our guest paddlers, as Scott stated, you are now part of the LARD family whether you like it or not), you should be very proud in your performance this weekend, you never gave up the fight. Through determination and commitment to yourself and each other we can only get better. imPROVE YOURSELF, IMPROVE YOUR TEAM!
See you on the water tonight as we continue our journey and prepare to "Protect our House"!
Thank you all.
Hope everyone's had a great week to settle back in and recover from another fun and memorable weekend in Vancouver. Geez, we lucked out on the wet forecast! For most of you, I'm sure getting back into the Long Beach boats this weekend will be a relief from the pipe-lined Geminis. So what else is there to say that hasn't already been expressed in a photo, comment, or video on facebook or twitter?
Racing in the beautiful Vancouver weather
To me, every Alcan trip has been unique, not taking into account our placement by the end of the weekend, or who attended the venue a particular year, since no two Alcan rosters have ever been the same. We've simply strived to compete to our team's potential from heat to heat, as good competition has always been consistent at this venue. This past weekend being my 10th trip to these races--K1, by the way, is now the only member to have attended all 11 of our team's visits(!)--my handful of defining memories include:
- developing new friendships with our largest group of guest paddlers ever, and meeting up with familiar ones. Thank you all very much--John, Jewelee, Bruce, Sharon, Debbie, Doug, Kimm, Barry, Thuy, Megan, and Ken--for being such great teammates both on and off the water (again, for some of you :-D). As quickly as the weekend flew by, it was a pleasure getting to know each of you a bit more, and hope you'll consider paddling with us again. This goes to our local UCI contingent as well (Sarah, Matt, Daniel)!
- gaining invaluable race experience. After 15 races this past weekend, I'm ready for LB and SF.
With the two aforementioned target races ahead of us, keep up the hard work on and off the water at practices, as well as throughout the week. All of your individual improvement will pay off huge if we can leverage our boat time on weekends to paddle together as full crews. I know we're stronger and more capable than our performances at Alcan showed, and look forward to our upcoming opportunities next month and again in September!
LARD also invites guest paddlers to join us during our stay in Vancouver. The following is one of the emails post-race. -ed
On behalf of John and myself, I just wanted to take this opportunity to say thank you for your unprecedented hospitality!
John and I feel so honoured and privileged to have had the opportunity to race with the Red team. LARD, is without a doubt one of the most incredible teams we've paddled with. Between your coaching staff who are quite experienced and knowledgeable, your awesome Captains and Directors, who still astonishes me with their organizational skills and of course your paddlers. Well, what can I say beside...Fantabulawesome!!!
We've paddled with many, and I mean many teams throughout our paddling career and I just have to say that LARD is the most friendliest, nicest, funnest (if that's a word), well-organized, powerful, dedicated and not to mention good looking group of paddlers we've ever raced with.
Thank you very much for having John and I join your team this past weekend at Alcan. We had a blast and I just wanted to apologize for not being able to socialize more with the team and get to know each of you better. Between having to work at the Burn Water tent and having a family to tend to it was a little difficult, but I guess that's what Facebook is for...
We hope to have the opportunity to race with you again and keep in touch. Good luck at Long Beach!!!
Your new Canuck friends,
Jewelee & John (The Vancouver Couple! Not to be mistaken by The Calgary Couple) 8^) teehee
Watching the races.
Womens Rec B 1st
Mixed Comp B 2nd