|Wow what a week up here in hot hot hot oklahoma city... Hawaii Canoe Kayak Team was represented this year at nationals by a small but talented group of paddlers and I am happy to report that every paddler that has raced during the week will be bringing home some hardware ( MEDALS!!)
A lot a fantastic performances through the week with people doing personal bests, making finals, winning medals and even racing in the canoe C2 in which we won a medal.
We had family achievements with the Dolan Brothers winning gold in both senior k2 races and then of course daughter and mother combination Kati and Kathy Erwin winning gold in the K2 500 intermediate division and then pairing up with Rachel Fujita and Giulia Anderson for the senior womens K4 and winning bronze! That boat had all the age groups, from juvenile, junior, senior and masters covered, Kathy Erwin who last raced nationals about 15 years ago, is our only masters competitor and this morning won the K1 500m in her division... She certainly still has it and was powering, very inspiring to us all.
Our brilliant bantams from last year Chris, Trenton, Scanner and Easton have all moved up an age category into Juvenile joining James this year ( which is 15 and 16 year olds) they performed fantastically in teamboats winning medals and making finals in the K1 which was quite a hard task to do..they were up against some very experienced and strong national development team paddlers , all I can say is the others better watch out next year!
Because our juvie men are hungry for more..They all recorded good times and learnt alot with regard to racing and I saw some brilliant finishes... keep up the good work guys! To top off the week of Heat they all raced in the K1 5000m distance event and the end of the week... now thats hard to do after sprinting all week.. very happy with all of their performances
Congratulations to Ben Beck who won gold in the junior K4 teaming with Ryan, Kaihe and Bj ( it was funny when they sat in the K4, it was basically the ILH kayaking 1st four placegetters from last year all teaming together to paddle to win a national title for hawaii which they did in fine form, I think they even sat in the order of their placing from ILH! hopefully it will inspire some of the the surfski paddlers to have a go in the flatwater next year...
Speaking of ILH.. we had the winner and 2nd place getter from the girls team up in K2 and blitzing the field to take Gold in the K2 200m, and Silver in both the K2 500m and the K2 1000m
The team of Giulia Anderson( Iolani ) Punahou Swimmer and Kayaker Rachel Fujita, really turned heads in OKC... Giulia who just came back from an intensive training camp in Lake Placid with the national junior squad, showed up some of her fellow competitors by placing 2nd to the only female member of this years USA National Team .. 2 silver medals for Giulia in K1 500m and K1 1000m... stamping a bright future in the sport.
And that C2 performance was after limited practice in Kailua, Giulia and Kati Erwin braved the field in an event in which they were just happy to stay upright...full credit to them for having a go , and actually taking bronze.. ( the outrigger paddling definately helps there)
Kati Erwin, Gold in the intermediate 1000m and our big improver, Kati is such a determined athlete and will be featuring big time next season, A bronze in the K4, SILVER in the K1 500m to add to the K2 and C2 500m medals..This girl is getting faster....so look out, we just need to find her a k2 partner now to train and race with on a regular basis!
A big thanks to Kati who diligently drove our kailua paddlers over to town each morning at the crack of dawn, so they could get the training in with the squad ... it has paid off for them.. Thank you for your support
Pat Dolan and Eric Abbott, our senior men, took gold and silver in the k1 10000m, they missed el presidente Chris Ball in their pack but managed to work together to hold off a very strong seattle competitor... We loved it each lap when Pat would look to us under the tent and smile...he was having fun with it. Pat took silver in the k1 500 and 1000m also...
BJ Campbell, getting ready for college and some paddling in Seattle soon, finished a great year with strong performances in K1, taking 3rd in a hotly contested K1 200m, placing 4th and 5th in the 500m and 1000m respectively, a brilliant 3rd place in the national trials 500m race but unfortunately missing the Moscow team for this year.. Bj has made huge leaps this year through hard work and will continue into the next age group with a strong base.
Kaihe Chong, stroked an awesome k2 1000m taking silver with BJ and bronze in the 500m, he was a finalist in both singles and a member of the junior boys gold medal k4..he was also our top merchandise salesman( selling lots of t-shirts/ hats / jerseys to the other teams ) this helps fund our trip so thanks Kaihe!
I will finish my report with Ryan Dolan, who started paddling in November of last year... since then he has won the pan am junior trials event, he is the pan american champion in montreal and now he is a US national champion in 4 events 2 junior and 2 senior events...Congratulations Ryan on your transition into the sport of flat water kayaking, we wish you well for your next event in september which is Moscow World Junior Championship Test event.. He is our only hawaii representative this year . We wish you well..
I hope I haven't missed any one, I think I have covered it all for now...
soo thats about it folks from Oklahoma City.. I am so proud of our team, thankyou for your efforts and devoting yourself to the season, all those early mornings have paid off in one way or another.
Thanks to all the parents for getting your child to this event...They were amazing, YOu will definately have to come to watch them race one day..
Thanks to Bonnie and Jeanie for being our team moms, you girls are awesome.. and of course Alyson Cheung for getting us all sorted for this trip.. Thank you ....
Head Coach Robyn
Hawaii Canoe & Kayak Team