The Forests are Burning and We are Sprinting

If you haven’t heard, JWOC is going through some changes for this year. On Saturday night the team got pulled into a meeting with the coaches who announced that Portugal had closed all of the forests due to forest fires and that we wouldn’t be having any forest races.

Instead of the forest races they announced that we will have three races – the planned sprint (which happened yesterday), a mixed relay (like WOC), and a sprint relay (not mixed teams).

Now that the administrative announcements are done, here’s what we’ve been up to!

On Saturday we finally got to meet up with the South Africans! We attempted a pool swim but ended up just having some long chats in the hotel air conditioning.

Chaos in a photo

We then went to a castle to explore, and met up with the South Africans again to have some ice cream and explore the local town.

We also had a nice team meeting, and had a screen that looked like we were planning a prank on the Swiss (the only other team at our accommodations), just in case they walked in so we could put them on edge a bit :))

(Shhhh don’t tell the Swiss)

Sunday was the opening ceremony!

We had a bit of a training in the morning and then had the technical model in the afternoon where we got to experience what the starts would look like all week.

For the opening ceremony we had enough standing around time that we got to chat with some of the teams around us – it was the first time all the teams were in one place!

We also had a bit of a flag war with the Swiss. They had put two large flags up at the hotel, so we took all of our little flags and put them all over the hotel. When we came back from dinner, however, they were all gone. A couple minutes later we walked past one of their rooms and lo-and-behold, they had made a garland of our flags and hung it up in their window. Long story short, we have one of their flags in our window and they have a collection of ours in theirs.

Then it was Monday which means race day!!

Our earliest start was 8:37 (Victor) and our latest was Ben (11:03) which was quite the spread. It was a mixed bag of races – some were happier than others. A good way to start off the week overall though.

Results and GPS here:

Today (Tuesday) was another rest day. In the morning we had a little shop around for banquet outfits. Let me just say that they are beautiful. No spoilers though.

Then we all headed to a lake to swim where we met up with the Canadians. Had a bit of a game of monkey-in-the-middle with Anna’s o-shoes that ended rapidly when a dog started to swim after the shoe…

We then played volleyball with the Canadians and some Portuguese (a couple were on the o-team, the others were not). Keegan and Zoe got to show off all their v-ball skills.

Tomorrow is the sprint relay race starting at 8:30 local time. There will be a live stream + GPS here:

Our teams are:

Lily, Keegan, Ben, Bridget

Zoe, Victor, Holden, Kirsten

and then in the B-relay will be Alex and Anna who are paired with two of our South African friends!

Also, The World Games are beginning soon as well! Greg, Joe, Ali, and Alison will be racing in Alabama on Friday (Sprint), Saturday (Middle), and Sunday (Sprint Relay). Make sure to check in to how they are doing too!

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