# Monday, June 11, 2007

I've been somewhat quiet on the blogging front recently as I have been training hard for the mammoth canoe race we're competing in at the end of this month. The Cheshire Ring Race for those of you who haven't been keeping up with the little news I've been posting recently is a 96 mile canoe race we're doing this year in aid of charity (if you've not already made your pledge, why not pop over to www.paddlathon.co.uk now and make a donation -we've got a fair way to go to our £2,000 target).

Last night I decided it was time I sat down and started planning the route for the drivers, which first meant plotting the route for the paddlers and oh my god is it a long way! Until now I've thought "100 miles, yeah that's not too bad, we'll do that in a few hours..." (ok the few was around 20 but still). Plotting it on the map however shows just how far this thing is!

Instead of feeling daunted by the distance, I'm now even more psyched than before -and have even more reason to hit the gym hard! If you're interested, I've uploaded the route plotted on Google Earth. Currently it only holds the point data but in time I'm going to expand it so it includes information about each route (for the paddlers and drivers) and perhaps once we've done the race, pictures of each point.

For those of you interested in how my canoe training routine is going -it's good. I'm holding a steady 12st 6lb at the moment -sometimes dropping to 122st 4lb and I've blown my previous routine out of the water. Sam and I -despite some misfortune with our kit- have been kicking ass on the past couple of races -taking around 10-15minutes off our times from last year. I'm hoping to complete The Cheshire Ring Race in less than 18 hours at this rate...

Monday, June 11, 2007 10:35:26 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
# Friday, May 04, 2007

Ok, I promise to post something technical and interesting shortly (yes I know, that’ll be a first yada yada…) but I want to get some information up here about Paddlathon 2007. I’ve written a very quick site which I will be adding more information to shortly but it already has a lot of information about our charity canoe race and more importantly a donation form so once you’re done reading this pop over to www.paddlathon.co.uk and have a look.

I wanted to compete in the Cheshire ring race 2007 for a few personal reasons but the initial motivation was that I missed out on taking part in the Transpennine race –this was stopped the first year I was old enough for my canoeing club to allow me to participate so ever since I’ve wanted to take part in a long race (preferably overnight etc) as I felt it would be fun so when I was handed a flyer for a 96 mile canoe race last season at Bristol I decided it was the perfect choice! There is another long race called Devizes to Westminster which is around 124miles at Easter –which didn’t leave enough time to train or find a partner.

The Cheshire ring race is a 96 mile canoe race but at the end of June which meant more time to train and as it was nearer to summer it would also be warmer. Until a couple of seasons ago, I paddled with my canoe coach –and long term friend Paul Rose but sadly he damaged his back (thanks to me) going over a weir. He’s getting back into canoeing, but having vowed to paddle together again I suggested the Cheshire ring race as a worthy race.

Paul was immediately up for it and once we had got chatting we thought it had enough of a “wow” factor to be worthy of sponsorship and so Paddlathon 2007 was conceived… a 96 mile canoe race is without a doubt a bloody long way and knowing he may still have issues with his back over that sort of distance we decided doing it as a relay race would be better so we decided to get my two brothers Sam and Pat on board as they’re both keen paddlers and are always up for a challenge.

Originally we were going to raise money for a single charity but decided as there were four of us, it would be better to pool our collection efforts and raise for four charities together. The charities we’ve chosen are:

  • Samantha Dickson Brain Tumour Trust

    Samantha Dickson Brain Tumour Trust Logo
  • Multiple Sclerosis Society

    Multiple Sclerosis Society Logo
  • CLIC Sargent

    CLIC Sargent Logo
  • Mac Millan Nurses

    Mac Millan Nurses Logo

To my knowledge, I’ve never asked for anything for the information I openly share on my blog –and I probably never will (beyond the Google AdSense that appears in the design that is) but I would very much appreciate it if you were generous enough to donate a couple of quid as there are some great charities who dearly need your help.

I’ll post more information on the charities, the team and the boat over the forthcoming weeks but the race is June 30th – July 1st, if you fancy coming and seeing us off –or having a pint with us after the race that would be awesome.

Read more or donate online at: www.paddlathon.co.uk

Friday, May 04, 2007 7:56:27 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
# Friday, January 12, 2007

I'm currently thinking about participating in a 90 mile canoe race called the "Cheshire Ring Race" this year (30th June - 1st July 2007). I've always wanted to participate in a longer canoe race (normally I paddle 8 miles) and I've never had the chance to do anything over 20 miles since they stopped the Trans-Pennine Canoe Race the year I was old enough to take part. So when the opportunity to take part in the 90 mile Cheshire Ring Race came about I decided on the spot that's what I would do.

Eventually I would like to take part in the Devizes to Westminster race which assuming this year's training goes to plan, I plan to do in 2008. The Devizes to Westminster canoe race is about 125 miles of canal and river way starting at Devizes (no surprise there then!) and ending at Westminster. The race is usually at the start of April and can either be done non-stop or in stages over 3 days (for girls!).

The first time I do the Devizes to Westminster race I would do the race in a double (with my canoe partner and brother Sam I expect) so I thought the Cheshire Ring Race would be a nice warm up/test event for us (making sure we can keep up the training with work etc). I mentioned the fact I was thinking about it to Paul Rose (my canoe coach and close friend) wondering if he'd be interested in paddling with me in the Cheshire Ring Race and he was also up for taking part.

I then had two possible partners for the race -I was sure Sam would be up for it, so Paul suggested that we take part as a relay team -Paul damaged his back a few years ago while paddling in a Bristol canoe race with me so wasn't sure if he'd manage the full 90 miles. This sounded a very sensible idea. All that was left was to find another person for our relay team which where my other brother Pat steps in to make our team of 4 :)

Every year Paul Rose likes to do an event for charity and as getting sponsored for the race had already been suggested by Sam it was deemed to have enough of a wow factor to be "the event" to sponsor this year. We've agreed to raise money for two (maybe three) charities (which are yet to be confirmed) but are likely to be from:

Each has it's own reasoning and once we've decided which charities we're going to raise for I'll post a little background :) but for now I should get back down the gym!

For anyone else interested in joining in (you're welcome to be on our support crew if you'd rather not paddle -would be great to have you there!) here is the brochure:

  • Cheshire Ring Race 2007 brochure front
  • Cheshire Ring Race 2007 brochure back
Friday, January 12, 2007 1:14:22 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [1]  | 
# Thursday, September 28, 2006

For those of you interested, the photos from the Hastler Finals (National Canoe Finals) are now online, taken a few days but oh well that's life ;-)

Photos from the Bedford Finals - http://www.thesitedoctor.co.uk/photoalbum/default.aspx?fld=photos/Canoeing/Hastler%7EFinals%7EBedford%7E2006_09_16_17

Again it's on the old album for now so I apologise.

On the whole the race went ok, Sam paddled very well but I had to spend most of my time bracing against the incredible wash -at times the water was coming over the front of the boat and into Sam's cockpit. Pat and Paul had a bad experience with the start gun going before they managed to get to the line -despite my comments to the starter that not everyone was there. The organisation of the race was terrible, the "accomodation" (one toilet) wasn't great which was a shame but all was soon forgotten when we were off the main canal without the wash it was a nice race.

We're still awaiting the results but I'll post them here when they're online.

Thursday, September 28, 2006 8:28:27 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
# Sunday, June 18, 2006

So as ever, people want to know how our race went today, well it's not all good news today I'm affraid, after a couple of weeks of insomnia and Sam not having a good night of rest because of returning home we didn't do so well. Luckily we did make it all the way around the 8miles but lack of sleep and practice together meant we were all over the place on the open water (about half the race) and ran out of steam around the 4mile mark.

We still did manage a time of 1hr 22mins which, although not our best is still respectable as there was a fair head wind most of the way. I'm not going to dwell on it too much though as we couldn't expect much more without the training we really do need to be doing. The next race is at Bradford-on-Avon after our holiday so hopefully we'll be pretty refreshed and ready to kick some ass!

John, hope you're ready for us to beat you, it was close last race, not as close this race (about 1min behind) but next time... ;-)

As for everyone else, they did ok, Pat aparently fell out but the PMC team did well on the whole so well done guys -and well done Sam, a little more practice in the Cream Regina and we'll be fine.

Sunday, June 18, 2006 10:57:40 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  |