Sunday, May 3, 2015

Hyeres World Cup

I recently competed in the Hyeres Olympic Week, the first ISAF World Cup event using their new format.  This event was limited to the top 40 girls in the world, and as such it was highly competitive. There was no room for mistakes in any race, and the technical level of the fleet was similar.

I spent the lead-in time before the World Cup regatta doing some training sessions with the Polish windsurfing team, who are ranked among the top sailors in the world. It was great to see my speed in training was equal to the very best.  With world-class speed, my focus for the event was to improve tactics and strategy.

Photo: Will Ricketson

Although I knew that this preparation was good, I felt a little out of sync during the regatta.  Given the high caliber and small fleet, there was no room for mistakes in any race. Everyone was sailing fast and good results were based on making few mistakes and having solid tactics and proper strategy for the given day. As such, the racing was very tight.  Normally, I was well placed during the first half of the races, however, I made one or two small mistakes that lead to poor finishes.  Because my speed was quite good, it was easy to register these tactical or strategic errors during the regatta.  My results in this regatta do not reflect my improvement over the past year.  However, given the new racing format and my experience from this regatta, I now know that I need to improve my race day process and my mental approach. I have discuss this with my coach and we are ready to address it as well as continue to improve my speed.

Photo: Will Ricketson
My next event is the European Championships in Sicily next month, and after that, the Rio Olympic Test Event.  Prior to that, I have three training camps with two top coaches in Spain and France focusing on what we learned in Hyeres. I’m looking forward to this training and believe it will be very productive.

I am confident my hard work is paying off and will benefit the US Olympic windsurfing program for Rio and beyond. 

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