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Athens - preparation for 2001 Mistral Windsurfing World Championships 17-27th August

Hello All, well here we are in Athens. The sun is shining and the heat is cranked right up, temps in the 40s make it uncomfortable at times, but we are getting used to it. We are based in a town 40 minutes away from Athens called Varkizar, this is the venue for the 2001 Mistral Windsurfing World Championships 17-27th August. Jon Paul Tobin, Jay-Jay and myself have an apartment about a km away from our race site everything is within walking distance which is great, no need to take on the Greeks in there mad driving race. We arrived on the 20th of July and tucked straight into the training ,we are sailing six days a week at the moment 3 on, 1 off routine. Sailing conditions have been quite varied. One day it's blowing dogs off chains and the next its glassy flat. This time of the year the local wind blows, this is called the Meltame. It's a very strong, very hot offshore wind, it will start to blow 3-4 days on and few off, then becomes more consistent during August, so the locals say, Seeing is believing. Where we are racing its blowing directly off 'some big hills making the winds very tricky to sail in, just the way I like it. The light wind days seem to have a paten that we are working out, the breeze starts as an off shore wind but will clock 150 degrees during the course of the day, the biggest factor is to keep working left the left side during this period. It the wind has not built by 4 it will not come at all. These days are hard, the heat and the constant reminder of dehydration is always there. We have not had a coach on the water for support, but had been hanging out with the Japanese, they have been great carrying our water and supplies, we have also scored a couple of Japanese's dinners, which we all love. The great thing about the heat it the water temp, when you get too hot you take a dip, but the problem is you don't get dip time while racing. I started to have trouble with my hands last week, the heat and the amount of sweet was making them soft and really starting to hurt, I told myself, remember pain is only temporary, just keep on training and the body will get used to it. We have been here 2 weeks now and have 2 weeks to go before we start racing. I can report that things are shaping up well . Almost everyone else is at the Europeans which start tomorrow, we decided that there was such a small break between the 2 events and not enough time to recover. We are here to perform at the Worlds. That's all from me, not really a lot to report on, just back into the old routine and keeping life simple. Eat, sleep and train, for now anyway. Hope all is well in New Zealand. Regards Aaron McIntosh. Ph 64-9-5347974Fax 64-9-5347972Mbl 021 624 121email:NZL121@xtra.co.nzwww.aaronmcintosh.com

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