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June 6, 2006

At the closing ceremonies, the Volkswagon representative presented Emily with their coveted, “Full Throttle Award”. The concept is to recognize the athlete the proved their mettle above and beyond expectation in and out of the arena. Emily certainly fits that mold, winning this year’s Pro Women freestyle competition at 16 years old, and winning medals in the boatercross, and 8 Ball competitions. Emily’s “kayakers with a cause” projects and fundraising is becoming apparent to the event organizers and sponsors which is great to see.

While Dane didn’t receive any special awards from the organizers or sponsors, he also gets a “Full Throttle” award from me. Placing 7th in the men’s pro class in the Teva Mountain Games Freestyle event is huge on its own at 12 years old. He made the top 10 cut, beating out quite a few big name pro paddlers, and then went on to beating three more in the semi-finals to take 7th. This year he was last in the Homestake Creek Race in his Fun 1.5. He finished the race with perfect form, but had a rough top section, flipping and taking a “tour”. Other paddlers were not so lucky as they got pinned and swam, however. I am still not letting Dane “race” the creek, but instead he has to take the lines that are as safe and consistent as possible. I try to set an example by also taking lines that are slower, in exchange for safety.

Yes, I am a proud papa. The way the kids handle themselves is more important to me than how they perform. They win the gold medal every day in that arena and for that I am blessed.

🙂 EJ


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Emily winning her semi-finals heat

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Dane putting a Patagonia Sticker on his boat