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Friday, July 15, 2011

Game, Set, Match

I left London, Ontario for Holland on June 21st with the women's team and did a terrible job (as some followers probably noticed) on keeping up to date information on racing. My blog was never intended for the mundane details of racing and race plans and what I do on international trips, but I feel that because Tracy and I learned some very important things about ourselves in our last races we can get a bit philosophical here.

Amsterdam was not our best. Period. Why was it not our best? Well, that was what was scary at first. I think it was hard to place exactly what went wrong and what led to an eight second loss to the British on the second day of racing. One might like to point out that there was a jet lag factor as we flew in to Europe and raced three days later. I preferred to ignore the fact that my body thought it was asleep when it was awake and vice versa. However, maybe I should have understood that that might have been a factor more than I did. Secondly, rhythm. Without getting too much into the boring details, there's a thing known as rhythm in racing and we didn't have it. We were like skinny white girls at a hip hop concert. We had guts, we had eagerness to race, we had some fun, but ain't had no rhythm.

See, here's the thing I love about Tracy and I. We love to win. We don't just love to race or medal, we love to win and we knew that our training camp in Italy following the racing in Amsterdam was our chance to refocus, grab the bull by the horns and figure out how the heck to be the double we know we can be. I'm extremely proud of us because there's no question in my mind that we found that double again. We found that double and then some because a true test of character is not what you do when things are hunky dory (I don't even know how to spell that stupid phrase). Character is what comes out when you struggle and must overcome. We were cranky for a few days, I'm not going to lie. However, that was a good thing because it showed each other that we care, that we both want to be better and after our small temper tantrums, we got to work and we got faster. Tracy and I have now gone through a series of very high highs and lows and we have come out with a gold medal at the third world cup in Luzern. This regatta is notoriously the most prestigious of all the world cups and it gave us a chance to prove that we were not a one hit wonder last year and that we are here to put up a serious fight to defend our title as world champions. The racing in Luzern reminded me once again of what it feels like to race with someone who is so focused and intent on being the best stroke seat on the race course. We won our heat, our semi, and the final and every race built on the last. Confidence breeds confidence and in this case (as in tennis) to win the match, you must win the set and to win the set, you must win the games. It would have been easy to go out in Luzern in our first race and only think of having been beat pretty severely only two weeks earlier, but we didn't. We were fearless and most of all, we trusted each other to do the job we needed to do. I am so glad to have gone through this testing period because now I know we can overcome, we can fight and we can win.

Following is a song that I have listened to before racing and I think for this post, it's most appropriate. I want more!!!

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