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After a well-earned break at the end of the 2014 Pentathlon World Championships in Warsaw, Poland I was ready to get back into my base training season and prepare for 2015. At this time of year, I generally focus on fitness and putting in lots of bulk miles and meters. I also make a point of participating on the Canadian and Ontario fencing circuits, which recently provided the opportunity to fence internationally.

The Commonwealth Fencing Championships happens every 4 years, and I had the privilege of being selected to compete for Team Canada in Largs, Scotland. Unlike pentathlon fencing where we compete for only 1 point in a “do-or-die” bout, I had 15 touches against my opponents to develop a strategy and figure them out. I was lucky enough to be travelling with many of my teammates from the Ottawa Fencing Club, which meant I had my regular training partners who know my game well to help me strategize against my opponents..

In the individual competition, I was eliminated by the number 1 seed, Jo Halls (AUS), in the round of 16 and finished 14th overall. The event is a fantastic show with the athletes paraded out in front of the audience and battle on lit-up pistes. It really added to the drama, for both the competitors and the spectators.

Two days later, I competed in the epee team event with two other Canadians and, unfortunately, we lost a close battle to Team India. The thrill of competing in a team added a new dimension to the sport of fencing for me.

The Scottish Fencing Federation hosted a fantastic event all week and their hospitality extended to the event banquet where the athletes from all nations were taught how to do various Scottish Country Dances at the banquet (and no, I don’t have video of that !!!! J).

In between competing, keeping up on other pentathlon training and socializing with the fencers, I was able to tour the Scottish Highlands for an afternoon with my teammates and Mom. It was truly breathtaking …. but driving around on the other side of the road kept us on the edge of our seats all day.

Until the Christmas holidays, the next few weeks are full of regular training, time trials and university exams.

Cheers and thanks for following!
Mel

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