The Lahti 24hr ultra marathon race will always be a challenge. I was using this race for the Guinness World Record attempt for kayaking on flatwater. Each lap was 2.5km.
Last years winner, Petri Tamas was here and we both had planned to do the same distance.
Race morning and we all were doing our final preps for the 12 noon start.
The wind was up and the forecast was for a windy day up to 27kmph…
The start was fast however I wanted to keep to my race plan, so I started to work the numbers… To maintain a pace that I can do for the 24hr period.
My 1st break was at 45km. Got more drink and had a quick stretch and off I went.
Another 15km later I had to stop again, I lost my drink and needed more…
The next scheduled stop was at 90km and I made that fine. Petri and I were now more or less paddling together. He was 2 laps ahead of me however I felt good and was waiting for the wind to drop.
Passing the 100km mark in 9hrs 10min & 10 seconds all was good…
My numbers were working, Petri and I were wash riding each other doing a lap each and keeping each other company…
Then all of a sudden I had a sharp pain on my right arm, I pulled up and Petri took the lead. I paddled to the support stop. Put on a brace and continued for another lap before I had to withdraw. I was gutted however there is nothing I could do. The pollicis longus &/or brevis muscules were stressed out and inflamed. Although I have paddled in Windy conditions, the time and strength of the wind was too much for me this time.
I managed to do 117.5km in just under 11 hrs. The total break time was about 16 minutes when I stopped.
Petri continued and finished the 24hr race. He did 255.381km. This is a new World Record and I hope that Guinness will recognise his attempt.
So 1st Petri Tamas, 2nd Johanes Hietala (175km), 3rd Nic Riosa
So whats next… the next week I will rest and see how my hand recovers. After that, maybe I will attempt the record again in Tampere. Watch this space…
2 days to the 24hr race in Lahti Finland. It is the tool that I will use to attempt to break the current Guinness World Record for kayaking on flat water. The current record for “Farthest distance by canoe / kayak on flat water in 24 hours” is: The greatest distance canoed (or kayaked) on flat water in 24 hours is 241.95 km (150.34 miles) by Carter Johnson (USA) on Lake Merced, California, USA, on 29-30 April 2006.
All the training has been done. I am ready to see what I can do.
The numbers tell me that I can kayak over 250 km however training is one thing and the attempt is another.
I will know on Sunday 12 noon Finnish time… Will the numbers work for me…
After the 5 day drive back to Tampere Finland I had a chance to look over some of the video I took of the trip. A lot of drive about 5300km each way and of course the 3 days of paddling covering 281km of the river.
The video log gives you an idea of the environment I was in. It was cold but I could deal with that (most of the time).
After I left Krasnoyarsk I was told that it snowed for 2 days.
I did manage to stop in Lahti Finland for a few hours to have a look and kayak the lake I will attempt to break the flat water record. It was windy but a good paddle overall. Especially after such a long drive…
A HUGE THANK YOU to all those people who made this adventure possible.
Anyway, click on the link and enjoy the video where ever you are
wow – I did 3 days of river testing. The 1st was the day after I arrive in Krasnoyarsk, it was from the Dam in Divnogorsk to Krasnoyarsk. This turned out to be the fastest I would go in the testing however the average speed was only 17kmph. It was a short day of just under 38km.
I then took a couple of days to get the kayak and myself ready for the Day 2 and 3 of testing. I did not really know what to expect so I made sure I packed enough food (Apples & Energy Bars) for the 3 days. I had made the Energy Bars in 1 kg lots which was cut into 4. I had with me 1.5kg which is enough energy for the 3 days. The apples were used to vary the taste plus had a good lot of energy for what i was about to do. So packed with the food, was my tent and sleeping bag and mat plus warm clothes. All this was placed into the kayak and I was ready…
Day 2 was leaving Krasnoyarsk heading to Pavlo which was a small village. After about 20km of kayaking the numbers were down and the average speed was less than day 1, about 15.6kmph however it got slower as the day went on. I was not too happy about this however things can change. The weather was ok, cloudy with the wind on my back. The wind had a chill to it so I made sure I was fully covered from head to toes. I covered 131km for the day with an average speed of 15.3kmph.
Day 3: After a night camping in the rain I woke up early. It was cold and the rain was off and on. I packed up the gear and set off. As I was leaving a ship / barge heading in my direction appeared. I thought what a way to start, get a ride 1st thing. It ended up going too slow and I was pulling away from it. However again the average speed was not what I needed. It was even slower than the previous day. When I reach Porog, I stopped. In front of me were grade 2 – 3 rapids. I had no intention to go down them. I had noted on my map that it was a danger area but was not really sure about what to expect. I pulled to the side and decided to call it a day and end. Average speed for this 94km was 14.1kmph
I went to talk to a local who was not too impressed seeing me however after a phone call to his son he decided to help me. I thought yes, can be taken to the main road and call for pick up. I thought wrong, he loaded me and the kayak onto his motor boat and took me down the rapids. This 2km stretch of water was dangerous. With no spray skirt I would of filled with water and probably fell out. Not something I wanted to do. Anyway, after the rapids he pulled into a sheltered bay and off loaded me and my gear. Thanks Peter.
So, back into the kayak, another 17km later average speed 14.5kmph, I arrived in Galanino and called it a day and end for the second time today.
This time I packed up the kayak, put it on my shoulder and went to the main road after sending a message to Nina my wife and others that wanted to know if I was ok. I also organised pick up which happened 5 hours later.
Finishing this test was a challenge. I set out to test the water speed. It was not there. I had to make a call not to travel further down the river when I knew the speed was not there. I covered over 200km and the speed was just not there. I feel sad that I will not make the record attempt however happy that I tried and can walk away from the Yenisei River knowing it is not the river to make such an attempt.
Next up is the adventure to drive back to Finland. Once there I will take a couple of days off and then get ready for the flat water record which I will attempt in Lahti Finland on June 15 & 16 2013.
I am now in Krasnoyarsk. I drove over 5000km to get here from Tampere Finland. The 5 days of driving went rather well. It was a long time in the car however in a way it was training for the record attempt.
Last Saturday I kayaked from Divnogorsk to Krasnoyarsk, a 35km stretch out after the drive. The average speed was 17kmph. For the record I need to average 18.72 or more to break it.
Yesterday, Sunday evening I met with Kate who is helping me organise the team of supporters that I will need for the attempt. I met Kate last year when I visited Krasnoyarsk. She has pulled together a group of people who are keen to help out.
Tomorrow, I will start my river testing from Krasnoyarsk to Lesosibirsk, about 450km distance that I hope to cover in 3 days. The weather is ok, a little cold but I have the needed clothing to cope. I have to carry all my gear, safety equipment, sleeping bag, food & water etc. Once I have finished testing this section of river I will know if it will be possible to make an attempt. I have always said if the numbers work I will attempt to break it. If the numbers don’t work then I will look elsewhere.
My fingers are crossed hoping the numbers will work.
The 1st week in Czech and I was able to start training in the ‘red rocket’ as Andrew calls it. It was good to be back in the kayak. I had to get it set up again as the last person to kayak it was Andrew 2 years ago.
The week started for me last Thursday with a 40km effort. It was an effort as it was 20km up stream fighting a strong flow. As of yesterday I did just over 130km and half of that was against the current. With me only doing about 8mmph upstream I felt I was spending too much time going up and not enough time going with the flow. Today I changed my tactic and went from Steti to Decin, a 79km stretch of water with 5 portages due to the lock systems here. It felt good and with a good rest for tomorrow I will be ready to do it again on Thursday again. The plan is to do the course at least twice in a row. I do want to cover over 300km next week so in some ways it is easier. I have to leave my car at the train station and return to get it after the paddle. The kayak takes me about 6 hrs, an 90 minutes to get to the start and then another 3 hours to get back to Decin with the car. Turns into a long day however there is no other way I can do the mileage at the moment.
So, now it is resting up till Thursday
Now in Europe and able to start the final prep for the attempt. Its been a challenge so far, finding the time to train the long miles, balancing work and family life. It is easier now as my focus is on the attempt. My wife, Nina, is supporting me through this and knows that it will be my only chance to make it happen.
It is not just kayaking more than 449.04km that I have to do. The additional support from others is so important that it will be a team effort.
Thanks to Karl at TSL for helping me make the GPS charger unit that I can use when I am attempting the record. Thanks to Carl from Adidas New Zealand (Euro Optics) for fixing and giving me new lenses for the adidas eye-wear that I will be using. Thanks to NoName (www.nonamesport.com) of Finland for the clothing that I will need for the attempt.
Next week I will be in Czech collecting the kayak and getting the gear sorted. The big miles will happen again from next Thursday as I get the body into the needed Zone.
As I only have a 30 day Russian visa, I need to make sure my time spend in Russia is used well. It will be nearly 2 weeks of driving and the other 2 weeks will be going over the river and then the attempt.
If you live in Russia and close to Krasnoyarsk then drop me a note if you can offer assistance. If you want to keep me company for the 6200km drive then let me know. It will all come together, I know that much. The count down is on… Bring it on…
Also, an attempt for the flatwater record is on the cards for June 15 & 16 in Finland. Its been approved so looks like it will also happen. Will keep you posted on both attempts…
Last week was a week of increasing daily mileage. It started of easy with a 10km kayak and then each day it went up 10km. Day 2 was 20km, Day 3 – 30km, Day 4 – 40km, Day 5 – 50km, Day 6 – 60km and Day 7 – 70km. Covering 280km in the week felt good. Day 6 was the hardest with the mind asking questions however I made it through the session and day 7 I was in the game again.
There were 2 goals in the week. One was the completing the set program and the other to gather info about average speeds and how I will maintain a high average. The last day I averaged 10.3km per hour including 3 short stops, 1 x 3 min and 2 x 2 min. This effects the rests take on average speed is going to be a challenge as being in the boat for 24hrs without getting out will be difficult but not impossible. I will need to figure out a plan to ensure I keep the kayak moving even if I need to take a quick break.
I also started testing the GPS units. They are giving me more or less the same info. Earlier in the week I had a different user setup on each however synchronize them and the data evened up. The distance covered was within 50 meters of each other on the last session.
Next will be testing the back up GPS using sportstracker on the Nokia N8. I am also nearly sorted about how to charge the units whilst moving. The buy options the Garmin have are not useful for what I need so I have to make something that works for me. The Powermonkey Extreme powerpack worked well, I have not charged the GPS units by normal power supply since I have gotten the Powerpack.
OK, not much more to do, just more mileage and ensuring I get the necessary Visa’s for Russia (a challenge on its own)
Into the 2nd month of 2013 and training is going well, this week will be a little less due to being married on Saturday however am on track to be in Krasnoyarsk about May 10.
Still have to work on the visa’s, Andrew will meet me there so the drive will be a bit tougher as I will be the only driver.
I am using a couple of Garmin Forerunner 310XT units to record the attempt. I have been sponsored 1 by Rubber Roofing Group, the other from Pizzaland. To power the units for the attempt will be a ‘Powermonkey Extreme’ unit that has a heap of power reserve (Just in case). My Nokia N8 will also be used as a back up.
Testing all 3 units and myself will be done over a 24hr period in March.
Final training will be done in Europe and in Krasnoyarsk Russia whilst testing the water speed. It will be a tight schedule as I need to be in Finland by June 15.
Still working on getting more sponsorship as the accommodation, fuel for the drive and other related costs still need to be covered.
All I know is, the body and mind will be ready. Everything else will fall into place at the right time.
Happy training everyone…
PS. Andrews update… Will be continuing my circumnavigagtion around NZ by bike, leaving Raglan on the 2nd of March and then heading down to Wellington via the west coast.Then catch a ferry over to Picton where I will head over the Molesworth station to Hamner Springs and then on to Dunedin where I will catch a flight back to Auckland.
Last month I was in Krasnoyarsk (Siberia) Russia having a look at the Yensei river. It is a big river with potential big water flows. Its a perfect place to attempt to break the current Guinness World record for 24hrs in a kayak on flowing water which is set at 449.06km.
The attempt will take place next May / June 2013 when the waters are at the biggest. My trip this year was to get some local support and with this support I can mount a serious challenge.
In early May 2013 I will head to Krasnoyarsk with Andrew to test the waters with the hope the water speed being fast enough. Our kayaks are in storage in Decin Czech so thats our 1st adventure, drive 6500km to Siberia and then spend about a month there for our 2nd adventure followed by the return leg (adventure #3).
Stay tuned and soon we will have a page with all the info up and running soon.