Competing in the ONK here in the Netherlands is about the highest you can achieve here. Besides this competition, there is really only international honors to be achieved.
I have now competed in the ONK 3 times, in all parts.
In 2020 I participated for the first time, team competition, starter and freshwater.
I was still working with the TG6 at the time and stupidly in the middle of the ONK I bought another camera, the OMD that I still have today.
That didn’t really help the results and outside of the freshwater competition with a 6th place finish, it wasn’t much else. With the team, we even finished last 🙂
I participated again in 2021, and with the new camera, new strobes and lots of support from Ron Offermans, things went much better.
At the team competition, with Roy van Hemert, Sandra Boerlage and Mieke Noordanus, we still accomplished a lot. Coach Ron was bombarding us heavily with his knowledge and constructive criticisms. So we rose to a very high level and won the team competition! Team 4ToGo!
Individually, I was only happy with my fresh water photo and it came in 4th!
So progress was very clearly there.
Then we get disaster year 2022. I had registered and passed on my days for the masters. Lots of practice and I was ready!
June 2022, week off, cottage in Zeeland booked and go. The day before the first day of competition, the bluster began. Snotty, coughing.
On the first day of competition, I gave up after 1 dive. Back at the cottage high fever and my lungs were just about on the table. So called the family doctor and went home.
After checking, it was clear, pneumonia!
Day plans for the ONK, I literally went to bed in misery and was out for almost 2 weeks.
Fortunately for fresh water, I was able to get going after that and, after many attempts, was finally able to get a nice pike photo.
For the masters, with the NOB’s leniency, I was allowed to catch up on the 2nd day in September. Totally happy we booked a hotel and on the day we were at the waterfront and oops…. the wind had turned and so because of the rain and thunderstorm the night before we had to make an alternative plan. That plan was there but the execution on my part was just wank!
I did eventually turn in the photos but knew the masters had come to nothing. It was another good learning moment though because I will thus have 2 plans for this year granny to secure execution anyway.
For sweet, I had a pike photo that was better than previous years so I eagerly awaited the awards ceremony!
For nothing because despite the jury comments which were laudatory (“you’d hang it on the wall in a minute” and ” the most beautiful pike of the contest”) the photo ended up in 17th place.
Very honestly? Gravely disappointed and really like, I’m not doing this anymore.
But we are a lot further along now and it still itches again! Registration for Sweet, Masters and No-Limits is done!
For my feeling I say F…. the jury and I’m competing for my own feelings!