RACICE, CZECH REPUBLIC (August 23, 2017) – The mood amongst Team Canada athletes is upbeat as a mix of rookies and seasoned veterans makes final preparations for this week’s ICF Canoe Sprint World Championships in the Czech Republic.
Led by defending World Cup champion and world record holder, Laurence Vincent-Lapointe (Trois-Rivières, QC) in women’s canoe, and Olympic medalist, Mark Oldershaw (Burlington, ON), in men’s canoe, the Canadian contingent is ready to take on the best in the world as they start their journey towards the 2020 Olympic Summer Games in Tokyo.
“This event will give our athletes and coaches a good sense for where they’re at and what they’ll need to do if they hope to qualify for Tokyo,” said Graham Barton, Chief Technical Officer for Canoe Kayak Canada. “For the younger athletes, it’s also a fantastic opportunity to learn from their teammates about what it takes to compete for a spot on the podium at an elite international competition.”
This is a year of transition for Canada’s sprint canoe and kayak program, with several athletes retiring after last summer’s Olympic Games in Rio. Younger athletes now have the opportunity to test themselves against top-notch competition.
Besides Vincent-Lapointe and Oldershaw, Barton says he’s excited to watch the Men’s K-4 crew of
Maxence Beauchesne (Trois-Rivières, QC), Ryan Cochrane (Windsor, NS), Marshall Hughes (Waverly, NS), and Pierre-Luc Poulin (Lac Beauport, QC). At the recent U23 Sprint World Championships in Romania, Canada’s four-man crew came within one-tenth-of-a-second of a gold medal in the 500m final. For this week’s championships, Canada has added some veteran experience in Cochrane who has two Olympic Games under his belt.
In Paracanoe action today, Canada’s Erica Scarff (Toronto, ON) advanced to tomorrow’s final in the KL3 200m after finishing third in her heat.
About Canoe Kayak Canada
Canoe Kayak Canada is the national governing body for competitive paddling in Canada, one of Canada’s top performing summer sports with a total of 24 Olympic medals, and a leader in the Paralympic movement. Canoe Kayak Canada is a member-based organization that includes an intricate network of clubs as well as provincial, territorial and divisional paddling associations. Elite National Team athletes proudly represent Canada at various competitions around the globe – most notably the Olympic Games, Paralympic Games, Pan American Games, ICF World Cups as well as Junior, Under 23 and Senior World Championships. Follow Canoe Kayak Canada on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.
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