Somersham Water-skier aims for World Championships
Somersham water-skier Kim Lumley continued her preparations for this year s world championships with a victory at the second round of the British Water Ski National Racing Championships in Hunstanton. Lumley, 26, has already booked her place to compete in
Somersham water-skier Kim Lumley continued her preparations for this year's world championships with a victory at the second round of the British Water Ski National Racing Championships in Hunstanton.
Lumley, 26, has already booked her place to compete in the women's Formula 1 class at July's showpiece event in Belgium, but had to battle fierce winds and water conditions to lead from start to finish on Sunday.
"The weather was really horrible - although it got even worse after I had raced. I was glad that I already had my place on the team, because there were a lot of people with a lot of nerves there on Sunday," she said.
Kim will travel to Belgium hoping to reclaim the world title she won at her home club Hunstanton in 2005. Two years later she was on course to defend her title in New Zealand when her boat suffered a breakdown, and was forced to settle for silver.
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Kim has competed in every world championships since 1997, when she made a spectacular debut as a 15-year-old in Australia. After winning the first race, Kim was leading the second race going into Sydney Harbour, when she crashed and sustained an injury that ruled her out of the competition.
After securing her spot on the Great Britain team last September, Kim's focus has been on the championships.
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"I've got everything going for me at the moment, so I am really looking forward to getting out there and racing.
But it's still a case of things falling into place. You can do all the preparations in the world, but you need that little bit of luck at the right time," said Kim.
Kim is supported by her father Tom Lumley, who drives the boat during the races, and her fianc� Robert Manchett, her observer. The link between the three is crucial, as the observer communicates between the skier and the driver, signalling when to speed up, slow down or overtake.
However, Kim will be racing with a new driver, Nico Bertels, at the world championships.
"We reach speeds of over 100mph with the Formula 1 boats, and my dad told me he doesn't want to go that fast when he is driving for his daughter. But my dad and Nico are the two best drivers in the world, so I don't see it being a problem."
Water ski races can be crowded and dangerous, with up to 30 boats and skiers competing in narrow stretch of water over the 45-minute race. In Belgium, three of the four races will be held on canals, which can make for treacherous racing conditions.
"With so many boats on the canal, the water is disgusting. It's breaking everywhere, and if your boat gets too close to the wall, the water ends up coming back at you like a tidal wave," said Kim.