A good final event

A good final event

Another competition in the books! This time in Warsaw, Poland. This was the last event before Paris and the last event of the season.

Things were off to a good but frustrating start with epee on day 1. I have improved tremendously and it was my best performance so far, but I fell just short of making it to the next level where I would consider myself to be part of the middle of the pack. For a first season and first year as a Parafencer my progress is amazing, with many people I am beating or competing evenly with having 10 years or more experience. My goal was to reliably make it out of pools and into the direct elimination rounds and I fell just short by a couple points. I know what I need to work on which is grip strength and endurance and tip speed. I can see the shots I need to take and can set them up but am only getting my tip around in time if I am close to perfect. The good thing is that is a much harder skill to develop and I should be able to drastically improve my grip in the next few months.

Day 2 in saber went much better. I won some matches and was neck and neck with very good competitors. I feel like my performance was in the top 1/3 of the field, though I still have minor tweaks to make to get my movements more similar to people with both arms so the referees recognize them. I made it out of pools and into DEs which was my goal. I now reliably make it to DEs in saber which is amazing progress since saber is my least practiced weapon. My goal going home is to practice primarily saber for the next few months and win a DE at the next competition in November. Things are looking very positive for this one :).

The final day was foil teams. I haven’t done foil in months but the team needed an extra person to compete so I filled in. It went surprisingly well! I scored more points than I ever have in foil and beat a fair number of people, a direct result of getting better in general. It was also a lot of fun since I had no expectation to perform so I could try things and be a little more wild and less controlled on my actions. We finished the day in 7th place and won 1 and had a close match with the Ukrainian team who are very highly rated. Everyone was very happy with our performance and since we are sending a foil team to Paris the points we earned will help their ranking going into the games.

Overall it was a good end to the season and I can see that I will move into the middle of the pack at the start of next season which will be a huge milestone.