Sunday, April 3, 2011

Princess Sofia Trophy, Palma de Mallorca, Spain

Polish youth coach Maciek Dziemanczuk and team

After a two-week training camp with the Polish team in El Puerto de Santa Maria, Spain (Cadiz area), I'm about to begin the World Cup event Princess Sofia Trophy in Mallorca, Spain.

Training in Cadiz and here in Mallorca before the event led to a new list of skills to develop. In the wavy conditions of the Mediterranean and before that, Bay of Cadiz, the skills I learned in Miami need to be refined and new ones learned.

Oftentimes in these older maritime regions, strong winds have character and are named. In South France, the 30-40 + knot offshore wind is famously known as "le Mistral," and in Cadiz a strong prevailing southwesterly is named "Levante." Levante made a showing for almost an entire week, and we trained in 30-knot breeze after a week of light wind. Although it wore out all the sailors, Levante created a great opportunity to find areas to strengthen for December's regatta in Perth, Australia, another notably windy venue. It was also a good warm-up for the Princess Sofia Trophy.

Fixing a broken batten
Team meeting

After just under a week's worth of training here in Palma, where I am being coached by Britt Viehman, it's evident that the conditions require techniques that are newer for me. We've developed a specific plan for each condition and the event will be a great training opportunity. This year before the Olympics, competition is at its best and toughest, and the large attendance of many top sailors will make the event challenging and exciting.

Palma cathedral, early morning by ferry

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