Picking up the Pace

It’s been a week since the final at Non-Qualified Trials, and it has flown by.  Between racing, de-rigging and trailer loading, traveling back, getting my house in Princeton back in order, and then reintegrating into the PTC training group, I feel like I’ve blown through the past several days without much time to stop and get my bearings.  And so it goes–now with less than 100 days until the Opening Ceremonies in London, if I don’t keep completely focused on the goal ahead and keep the pace, I’m going to be left on the side of the road–and no one is going to stop to pick me up.

Trials:  a disappointing finish.  I can only commend the other USTC double–Kate Bertko and Stesha Carlé– for having an exceptional performance and for simply outracing us.  The four of us had done a good bit of selection in the doubles over the month leading up to Trials in order to sort out lineups, and all the racing had been very close between us.  It was a difficult decision to finally choose partners, and in the end, the final result was also a close race.  I went in to the final feeling like I was prepared to have my best race, and Ellen and I just weren’t fast enough on the day to come away with the win.  Returning to Princeton and to the rest of the Team, all we can do is do our very best to continue to find more strength and speed before we begin our European camp and racing campaign. Best of luck to our friends and teammates, Margot Shumway and Sarah Trowbridge, who placed third at Trials and who are going to attempt to qualify the double for the US at the Qualification Regatta in Lucerne at the end of May.

Moving forward, I will be focusing on the quad and trying to make that boat as fast as possible for the World Cup Season, and ultimately, the Olympic Games.  We have a very strong group of women who will be competing for those four seats, and I am lucky to be one of them.  Our schedule is essentially set for the pre-season:  a quad and some small boats will be attending World Cup I, and then the large training group will convene once again in Breisach, Germany to prepare for World Cup II.  If all goes well, we will race two quads in Lucerne to assist in final selection for the Olympic Team.  I will not be racing the quad at World Cup I, but will be a part of the Breisach and Lucerne group.

100 Days Celebration: was yesterday in Times Square.  What a cool event!  I was invited to attend last-minute when Caryn couldn’t make it, and so got to tag along with other members of the 2008 gold medal W8+: Erin Cafaro, Elle Logan, Susan Francia, Caroline Lind and Mary Whipple.  I had a blast.  Times Square was completely transformed into an Olympic playground, complete with BMX ramp, beach volleyball pit, gymnastics platform, and… ergs! I spent my afternoon meeting and greeting, racing on the ergs, signing autographs, giving interviews and taking it all in, and the day was a huge success.  It was so inspiring to feel the warmth and support from the New Yorkers who attended the event–thank you to everyone who came out to spend the day with us.  We couldn’t do this without you.

The USOC has just launched the RAISE OUR FLAG campaign, which allows US Olympic Team supporters to buy stitches in the flag that will be carried by Team USA at the Opening Ceremonies in London.  Stitches are just $12 each, you can donate to Team USA by visiting:  https://raiseourflag.teamusa.org
Please remember that the United States Olympic Team is the only Team in the world that operates as a non-profit organization–we do not receive any funding from the government to train and compete for the United States. We rely completely on the generosity and support of Americans to fund our training and to live our Olympic Dreams.  Please support your 2012 Olympic Team!

Check out the video I took of our visit to the NY Times and to the 100 Days Celebration:

Long Live the Dream,

–MK

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