Green Race Report 2008 - Mind Body Paddle

Green Race Report 2008

Green Race Report 2008

The Green Race is the big fall event here in Asheville and one of the biggest and most challenging extreme races in the world. This year the low water flow added to the difficulty and excitement. Usually the dam operators at Tuxedo cooperate with the race organizers in low flow years to open an extra generator. Unfortunately one of the generators was broken this year so they couldn’t release more water for the race. This means that Gorilla, the biggest, hardest rapid in the race, was more difficult than usual. A lot of racers weren’t even running the rapid that often in their practice runs because they were afraid of getting hurt and many talented paddlers opted out of the race entirely

Nonetheless, there were over 90 racers and a huge spectator crowd at Gorilla. Carnage opened the race with the course setter going off of Gorilla dead sideways. The next racer was my husband, Andrew Holcombe. He was first because he held the title from the year before and still holds the course record. He’s one of the best paddlers in the world and I rarely see him mess up his lines. So… I was surprised and a little concerned when he got turned around after the notch and ran Gorilla backwards! Since I was watching from the notch I couldn’t see his actual run down the falls, but I did see him washing out at the bottom upside down. I was happy to see him roll up and immediately shot his fist up in the air in good sport fashion. The crowd went wild with cheers. I was very relieved that he wasn’t hurt and he continued down the next rapid backwards. It turns out that he had spun out up at Go Left and also messed up his line at Zwix so when he ran Gorilla backwards he says it just made him laugh and topped off a bad race for him. I admire his good sportsmanship and his ability to let a disappointing performance roll off of his back. After all that he still ended up 5th which is pretty good considering!

There were a lot of other bad runs over Gorilla that made people cringe… backwards, sideways, upside down, paddles breaking, petons. Luckily no one got hurt and the crowd was good at cheering everyone on. There were also really good, smooth runs down Gorilla. Fellow Dagger paddler Pat Keller took the title this year. I think I heard there were over 30 Dagger Green boats in the race which is awesome. It’s really cool that all paddlers have access to new, modern race boats.

The women paddled really smoothly and they were fun to watch. There were three women this year, two in

long boats, Adrienne Levknecht and Laura Farrell, and one in a short boat, Louise Urman from New Zealand. I have a lot of respect for these women who raced because it’s a tough race. They have a lot of courage and talent. Adrienne had a fantastic run through Gorilla and she and Laura tied for first. All three women had nice lines and looked smooth.

For complete race results and video visit LVM.

From the blog

How to fail and win

Do you give yourself permission to fail? If you don’t, you may be missing out on your best winning strategy. In one of my monthly webinars, Ayla Wilk, a Mind Body Paddle Community member reminded the group of this powerful acronym: FAIL: First Attempt In Learning. Failing is part of life, how you view and

Read More »

15 Minute Yoga for Paddling

As paddling season kicks into high gear, it’s important that you keep your hips and your shoulders healthy. I’m teaching almost everyday this month and my yoga for paddling practice is helping me address tweaks and twinges so they don’t turn into major injuries that could keep me off the water. Here’s a 15 minute

Read More »

Posture for a powerful kayaking mindset

If you want to feel empowered and confident on the water, you need to learn how to sit in your kayak. Posture is the foundation to becoming a great boater, feeling strong and in-control. If you don’t believe, right where you’re sitting now, roll your shoulders forward and slump then try to smile and feel

Read More »

Get in touch!

Do you have a question? Would you like to connect and have a conversation or learn more about an upcoming retreat? Fill out the form below.