We now have a training website for the Extreme Memory Tournament! It's the kind of thing you have to pay $25 to use, which isn't something I generally approve of, but on the other hand we probably should stop expecting people to run these tournaments and give us money for free, because it's not a very sound business model. And it only equates to £16 in real money, which is hardly anything, so go on and pay it with my blessing.
In all seriousness, it's great to have something that provides a framework for a little bit of daily training - I did one of each discipline last night, and then again this morning, and I'm planning to stick to the two-a-day routine I established last year. I'm going to do the official qualifying thing too, even though I'm automatically qualified already, just because it's a challenge to aim for. It'll be embarrassing if my best scores aren't good enough to qualify, but hopefully I can avoid that. I did 26.79 seconds in the cards this morning.
The new images discipline is fun, it's sort of like the words, with a cards-style recall and the particular difficulty of maybe getting two images that are really quite similar and having to quickly think of a way to tell them apart. And the change to 80 digits in numbers makes that one quite a lot more difficult - last year I juggled the last five images, 15 digits, in my short-term memory (quickly reading and then repeating the words to myself rather than focusing on what the images looked like), and obviously that's a significantly smaller proportion of the numbers now it's gone up to 80, so I don't expect the times will be proportionate to the super-fast ones people recorded in 2014.
But we'll just have to see what happens - it's great to have a new memory challenge, and maybe it'll inspire me to do a bit of normal training, too? The sky's the limit.