I woke up Thursday morning at 6am because of a phone call from EJ. I am usually up by that time anyway but was sleeping in a bit because I was at the gym wrestling until late the night before. So, of course I answered the phone as I knew that it was my good friend and boss. I am not sure of exactly how our conversation went but basically he gave my his credit card number and told me to go to the airport and catch a flight to Washington DC for the Potomac Festival. That night I was in DC and the next day we’re running the great falls which was very exciting for me as I had never been there before.
The next day was the big Great Falls race. I paddled hard and felt really fast but made a small mistake and ended up in 5th place. The level of competition at the race though was truly world class, so as much as I wanted to win, 5th place still beat a lot of really fast racers. EJ looked awesome all day long and I thought for sure that he would win but due to to high caliber of racing anything less then a perfect race wasn’t good enough. He was however very fast and consistent. Anybody who might have forgotten that EJ still has ridiculous boat speed was surely reminded that he is a force to be dealt with in every event.
Today was the freestyle finals. The competition was at a hole called Bloody Good, but really it is bloody trashy and shallow. Despite its trashy nature it was pretty fun, and the idea of competing made it all the better. In the end I had just about as good of a ride as I could have and was able to win.
EJ was second with a great ride of his own, and Brian Kirk was third paddling nicely as well. I was stoked to win because this is the first time that I have competed since winning the event in Reno. I always feel a little uneasy after any kind of time out of my boat as I know that during that time the paddling world is getting better and I am not. Also, the last few days have been the first time that I have really gone 100 percent since my injury, which by the way has left a weird depression in my side, and I have got to say that I feel like my conditioning is as good as it has ever been.
I have had an awesome time paddling at the Great Falls and can’t believe that I have not been here before now. I am totally stoked that EJ called me up and brought me to this cool place. Tomorrow we are paddling at the Adventure Sports Center, and then I am flying home to the land of heat and fire on Tuesday.