Talent and Performance News April 2014

UK Sport Girls4Gold Programme

Afton Fitzhenry is currently half way through the six week full time Girls4Gold programme based in Nottingham; she is keeping everyone up to date on her progress by writing a blog titled ‘Girls4Gold – The journey to Tokyo 2020’.

This is a short extract from one of her posts;
“Hey guys

So I have been extremely busy over the last two days from making gains in the gym to having races in canoes to massages.

Yesterday started off as normal rolling then breakfast until our coach told us we had a mystery run…
When we arrived at the lake we get changed into our wetsuits and then were told to run 250m then sprint 250m then 250m jog then 20 press-ups then repeat until we reached the 2km mark! I was wrecked but all you could hear was coughing and spitting of all the people with colds it was like a scene from bay watch except the sun wasn’t shining and we didn’t have red shorts but hey close enough! After the run/warm up we got into our boats. My group was in the kayaks, our session involved our technique and speed over 200m being bench marked. Every time you get told one thing then you fix it but then another thing needs work it is like an unending circle and hopefully someday it will click! So we started the 200m sprints in pairs, Ready Set Splash… At the very start some of the girls just fell in straight away it was hilarious as one minute you look and they look perfectly stable then the next second they are under water freezing their socks off. We finished the three 200m off and jumped in the bus to get warm and then off to the gym to practice our technique on a machine called a slider. I think my technique is looking good or amber plus as the coach calls it so with more practice I can get to green technique = good.”

Podium4Sport and CANI are kindly supporting Afton (pictured) with the use of a bike for her Girls4Gold programme

Podium4Sport and CANI are kindly supporting Afton (pictured) with the use of a bike for her Girls4Gold programme

World Waveski World Championships, South Africa

CANI AIP athlete Marty McCann is currently out in South Africa competing in the Waveski World Series. Three open events precede the world title event in Durban later this month (26 April to 4 May). We all wish Marty every success in these events.

Marty is pictured below during the opening Waveski World Series event in South Africa

Marty is pictured below during the opening Waveski World Series event in South Africa


Development Squad News

All of the squads are currently busy preparing for a number of competitions over the coming weeks. The surf squad have been training with coaches Paul Harrington and Marty McCann and their first competitive event of the season, Ulster Surf Kayak & Wave Ski League Event Onewas scheduled to take place on Saturday 29th March at Portrush, however due to poor surfing conditions the event was cancelled so the first event took place on Saturday 12th April in Donegal at a blustery Marblehill. There was a great turnout from both the Development Squad paddlers and a number of paddlers from the Gartan spartans FAS outdoor instructor training course whom took part in the novice/plastic class.

The competition kicked off at low water with 2 heats of novice/plastics class followed by 2 heats of junior HP with Alwyn, Sean, Gerry and Ciaran getting through to the novice final. Development squad members Jamie Gamble, Meabh Lynch, Matthew Lamont and Zeke Wilson went through to the junior HP final. Meabh won both the ladies HP and IC classes with Megan coming a close second in the ladies HP.

2 heats of junior IC saw a really thrilling final with Jamie grabbing top spot. Masters HP saw the return of Richard Hobson on fine form taking top spot in that class. The ski class went to Matthew Lamont. A great show from Zeke Wilson in the men’s HP final where he came 2nd place with Donegal paddler Kieran Mc Dyre taking 1st place. The last heat of the day was men’s IC with some great paddling from the old boys with Dessie getting the honours.
Well done to Rosie and Lauren Brennan who got the best newcomer award and prizes.

A big thank to Rapid Kayaking for organizing the competition, and for sponsoring some great kayaking prizes, Thank you as well to Shambles and Barry for their input and judging, which made the competition run more professionally and smoothly and also to everyone who helped out on the day. Next competition is May 10th in Donegal. We hope to see another good turnout.

Mary Peters Trust

Huge congratulations to Jake Cochrane who has received a £500 award from the Mary Peters Trust. It is intended that this financial assistance will help towards Jake’s costs incurred throughout the competitive season and specifically in enabling Jake to compete in the British Open later this year.

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