Tuesday, September 04, 2012

World Cup No 3 – Nantahala Outdoor Centre, NC (NOC)

NOC site of the World Cup Finals 2012
and World Championships 2013

Fresh from the Pigeon we arrived at NOC on Sunday afternoon, excited and ready to go. The NOC is not only hosting the final of the 2012 World Cup but will also be hosting the 2013 World Freestyle Kayaking Championships, so it is a very important event. For me my goal here is to suss out the venue and feature as part of my preparations and the beginning of my training for next years big event.

Training begins

The event officially starts on Friday so for the first time during this World Cup we have several days off official training slots. Team GB have been allocated a slot with Team Canada and we spend the first few days figuring out how to paddle the feature. The feature has been being built for over a year, with diggers regularly in the river trying to tweak and improve this river wide hole. At the moment its a fun but testing freestyle hole that allows all moves but really needs you to be on your game, and it makes you think. I like it loads. I can't do all my tricks here yet but it definitely has a lot of potential and i'm really enjoying having this full training practice week.

Brandon sets up for a sweet combo move

Around the feature, off the water the set up it great. Theres bars, restaurants and shops all over looking directly over the feature and loads of cabins and things to do all around. We have set up base in 'Base Camp' a bunk house / youth hostel style cabin complex just a few minutes walk from the wave. The weather at the moment is not great, its very British with regular rain showers and grey over cast skies but is a nice break from the last few weeks intense heat and is due to clear up as the week goes on.

Islay flys high during training
As well as training for freestyle I am also back on the water training for the squirt boating event. The squirt boating is taking place at the same spot as the freestyle. Its going to be a very tricky squirt feature but with a deep river left eddy and a powered up mystery drop of the surfers right shoulder of the wave it should work out to be quite good fun... or at least a very interesting event!!!

The event kicks off again on Friday and will be live streamed on...


Keep an eye on the following websites for news, info and write ups on the event...


For now I must go get ready to practice as my next training slot begins at 6.30pm