It’s been a busy couple of weeks for me: competing in the
Ekstremsportveko 2007, making the odd Norwegian television appearance, a trip to ‘The Moon’ and coaching in Sjoa; not to mention various boat repairs!
With the exception of the National Student Rodeo, I’ve never competed in any serious kayaking events before; and the competition in the Voss Extreme Week was word class.
There were three events for Kayaking: Team race, Downhill (Time Trials), and Head-to-head; and despite the intimidating competition, I very much enjoyed being a part of the week’s goings on.
The night before the team race we arrived in Voss and I hooked up with two random German boaters: Jan and Pete – this was because my traveling companions were too broke to front the cash for entry.
The Team Race
After a flying start disaster struck when Pete’s deck popped and he eventually swam. However we managed to get him back into his boat and finished the race having gained a moral victory (i thought).
The race was won in superb fashion by Mike Abbot, Allan Ellard and Andy Philips.
The Brandseth Downhill is a time-trial held on an amazing technical creek. Being quick on the flats won’t help you if you can’t make the multitude of challenging moves on route. The race was won by Tyler Curtis who was closely followed by all the usual suspects.
Although I did not make the final ten, I was more than happy with my placing amongst midway between the fifty or so experienced boaters who entered. I can even claim to be the fourth fastest UK entry behind, Allan Ellard, Andy Philips and Pete Vickers and can barely wait to better my time next year!
The last competition was the Head-to-Head. Between 3 and 5 kayakers racing down the Strondalva provided the spectators with much entertainment. After winning my heat I was unfortunately knocked out of the semi-final. Although the race for 2nd place in the group was tight, Steve Fisher seemed uncatchable right from the start. Steve then went on to win the final and, with his performance in the Brandseth downhill, the overall kayaking competition.
Voss Extreme Week is not all about the competition tho; there’s plenty of gnarly boating to be had all over the place. We even featured briefly in a Norwegian television broadcast on NRK – viewable here.
Nick Horwood on Money Drop
With stills and video cameras out round the clocks, it seemed like every farmer and his mum was running the ‘Money Drop’ that week. A spectacular thrill nonetheless.
But much more fun than kayaking large waterfalls: Jumping off them!
Information about our trip to the moon and the highest flow on the Sjoa since 1995 to follow.