Monday, November 9, 2009

Andrew Holcombe Wins Green Race in Record Time: Post Race Interview

NOC Head Instructor and Team Dagger professional paddler Andrew Holcombe bested his own record of 4:27 by nine seconds to win the 2009 Green River Narrows Race, the most compeititve and popular creek boating race in the world. The course, situated on the Green's steepest mile (which drops over 342 feet) takes paddlers over numerous Class V rapids, including the dramatic 18' Gorilla. (See photo of Leland Davis from AW's Green River page.)

We caught up with Andrew around noon today to ask some questions about his awesome run on Saturday:

NOC: So, How did you feel about beating your own record? Did your 2009 run feel that much better than the '07 run?

AH: At the time I wasn't sure if it was that much faster, but I knew it was better. I had better lines [than in '07]. In '07 there were obvious spots where I could have had a cleaner line. Also, I feel like I was in much better shape this year. I'm a lot stronger this year.

NOC: Did the water level make a difference?

AH: It was at a really good 100, and higher water makes you go faster, but in some places higher water does make things harder.

NOC: What about your boat? You were in a prototype of the Greenboat in 2007, right?

AH: Yeah, and the prototype was faster in a straight line, but the production Greenboat is much easier to paddle. Plus, you know, we've been in the Greenboat for three years now. That certainly helps.

NOC: Shaving 9 seconds off the record is really impressive. That's almost 3.5% of your record run. Can you do that again?

AH: I still think you can go faster, but there was only one place my line could have been cleaner (I kind of plugged at Powerslide). Overall though, my lines were very good, and of course there were a couple of places where I wish I didn't hit a couple of rocks, but to beat my time I'm just going to have to paddle harder. The lines aren't going to get much cleaner.

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