The horn blows indicating the start of the race and I am running through the surf and up on my board as fast as I can. I reach, set, catch and pull my way through the chop, heading out to the first buoy 2 miles off shore. I try and focus on technique and my plan, knowing that my battle with the oncoming swells and the erratic conditions will test my skills and push my body to its limit for the next 2 hours or so.
I eventually reach the buoys at the jetty make the turn; I am alone and was on my way to the finish. It was about a mile or so north of the jetty when I ran into a small sail boat regatta. I thought to take the high line around the boats and head North West against the swells, thinking that I could catch a downwind and ride the swells towards the pier and the finish line.
I learned something during this race though and need to implement these lessons in my quest to become a better Stand Up Paddle racer. First, I need to train harder and smarter. Second, I need to stick to my plan. And third, I cannot will myself through this disease.