About 2 weeks ago paddling comrade Kenzie asked me to race with him in Manitoba. I hadn’t really been planning to go, but I was so thrilled to be asked that I looked into flights and rides and boat logistics and then said yes!
Graham found a great deal on a flight from Winnipeg to Saskatoon on Sunday night, so we grabbed it. My buddy Trevor offered to give me a ride there, since he was going anyway, and our boat was going to come in from Regina with Kenzie’s parents. It turned out I couldn’t get off work early enough on Friday (farm visit) to leave with Trevor so I got a flight to Winnipeg as well. It also turned out that since I am racing Ski to Sea with Kenzie’s mom Fiona later in the month and she was going to Winnipeg too, I raced both Saturday and Sunday with her. So the weekend was nothing like I planned, but ended up being really fun and great anyway. Going with the flow!
The water was super tough the first day, and we struggled a bit with a crummy water depth and twisty slow creek with lots of logs and sticks to hit. That race was in Selkirk on Cook’s Creek. The next day we had a 40 min warm up down the Assiniboine to the Red River (shout out Brown/Martineau rellies!) and then did a 10km race on the Red split over 3 laps around bouys. This race was a really interesting mass start, with 1 dragonboat, sprint C-2s, K-2s, K-1s and C-1s as well as a bunch of marathon boats. It was waves galore! Happily Fiona was driving and did a great job navigating the fray. We had a great race in the deeper, faster water and seemed to match up really well. I am looking forward to Ski to Sea, and ready to defend the Saskatchewan women’s title from last year.