Italian Coach Cathy Hearn comments on the 2004 Athens Olympic Course
June 10th ~
Here in Athens, it is almost always sunny and warm. Most of the time, there is a nice breeze coming off the Saronic Gulf, making the environment really quite delightful. Not really tropical, rather, Mediterranean. Imagine, that, since it actually is part of the Mediterranean.
During the first week of this training block, it was quite quiet, since most of the Euros were in Skopje, Macedonia, racing in the European Championships. Some countries elected to send their Olympic boats here to train while their B-Teams or A-list non-Olympic boats went to Skopje.
Now in the second week of the first training block, there are more athletes here from more countries. Some nations will arrive for the second block, with this time used for base training in preparation for their second peak of the year (the first being for their national selections or the Olympic selection.) Others are conserving their travel time, energy or money, or are putting off their Athens-course training for other reasons.
For more check out Cathy Hearn's Olympic Preview.
An interview with Pablo McCandless also has more on the Olympic course.
April 28th ~
Here in Athens the course is changing every day or even every half day as they move the obstacles around and let the athletes probe the depths. Some is entertaining, some is really enjoyable and some is just brutal. Anyhow, the course is always challenging and the athletes are paddling well, if sometimes a little disoriented. Everyone is amazed at the big changes that are wrought by moving little obstacles, and at the far-reaching nature of the changes, both up and down the course from the moved obstacle.
May 1st ~
Tomorrow we wrap up the training block here in Athens, with a new river each day after the World Cup as they move obstacles around trying to create the ultimate slalom river. I got to paddle on it the other day. It has the most fantastic ocean feel in a river-- the features are somewhat soft while at the same time being very powerful and some of them very weird, like the Potomac in flood. We all had a big celebratory moment the other day when the obstacle movement resulted in nice wave-holes in a couple of places including the biggest gnarliest drop (which previously had been characterized by a very vertical punchy hole which was difficult to jump well).
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Last updated: January 18, 2006