MONTRÉAL – The first day of Canadian Sprint CanoeKayak Team Trials 3 at the Olympic Basin in Montréal got off to a hot start as athletes raced in pursuit of qualifying for World Championships Teams. Most qualifications require two out of three wins to secure a spot on the team with original qualifications occurring at National Team Trials 1 which took place in Georgia at the end of April.
Most qualifications require two out of three wins to secure a spot on the team with original qualifications occurring at National Team Trials 1 which took place in Georgia at the end of April.
Mark Oldershaw of Burlington, ON got the win he needed in the Men’s C1 1000. Ben Russell of Dartmouth, NS was second and Paul Bryant of Richmond Hill, ON was third. Oldershaw has won silver and bronze medals at World Cups in the event this season and will try to crack the World Championships podium in August.
“My preparations have been going really well training at home and I just wanted to go out there and see what I could do,” said the Olympic bronze medalist. “I’m trying to get on the podium at Worlds and this was just a good preparation for that – to see where my speed is at and what I need to work on – and I’m looking forward to Moscow.”
Teammate Adam van Koeverden of Oakville, ON also got his second win in the Men’s K1 1000. Ottawa’s Angus Mortimer landed second place and Brady Reardon of Burlington, ON was third.
In Men’s K2 200, Richard Dober Jr. of Trois-Rivières, QC and Hugues Fournel of Lachine, QC were victorious in the two finals of the Men’s K2 200 they raced today. Ryan Cochrane of Windsor, NS and Étienne Morneau of Québec City finished second. The top two crews have been changed up since the first set of National Team Trials. Canada’s Under 23 crew of Marc-Alexandre Gagnon and Charles-Antoine Girouard, both of Trois-Rivières, QC, finished third in both races.
“It’s a tough field and that’s what we want – to be competitive in Canada so we can all rise together at the international level,” said Fournel after the second win. “It feels good to be back after a year on the side and not going to Worlds last year. It puts things in perspective when you’re watching the guys race and you really want to be in the boat.”
Ben Tardioli of Ottawa edged out Jason McCoombs of Dartmouth, NS in the Men’s C1 200. The two have been battling it out all season and today’s race came down to a margin of 0.052 of a second. Aaron Rublee of Kamloops, BC finished third.
Last year’s World Champions, Laurence Vincent-Lapointe of Trois-Rivières, QC and Sarah-Jane Caumartin of Otterburn, QC picked up the win in the Senior Women’s C2 500. Ottawa’s Megan Sibthorpe and Katie Vincent of Mississauga, ON finished second. Mariah Godin of Dartmouth, NS and Toronto’s Taylor Potts took third. All of the C2 athletes are still eligible for the Under 23 category and will contend in the U23 C2 event tomorrow.
Laurence Vincent-Lapointe took the victory in Women’s C1 200. Taylor Potts finished second and won the first set of Trials so will race off against Vincent-Lapointe tomorrow for the World Championships spot. Katie Vincent finished third in today’s C1 race.
Paracanoe assessments took place over several races with notable performances by Christine Gauthier of Pointe-Claire, QC; Christian Maranda of Québec, QC; and Dave Waters of Fox Point, NS. All three have already been on the World Cup podium this season. Paracanoe athletes are classified based on the ability they have in their legs, trunk and arms (LTA, TA, A). Gauthier is a five-time World Champion in the Women’s K1 200 LTA. She raced that event today along with the V1 200 LTA which she landed a silver medal in at World Championships last year. Dave Waters paddled strong in the Men’s V1 200 TA in which he has already racked up two World Cup medal this season. Christian Maranda continues to improve his time in the Men’s K1 200 LTA and says he’s hoping to get back to World Championships to improve on his third place result in the B-final last year.
“I’m feeling good and happy where I am, and I’m looking forward to getting even faster,” said Maranda who started paddling competitively in 2011 as part of his rehabilitation from an explosion he survived while serving in Afghanistan. “I have to give it my best everyday and use the energy of the athletes surrounding me at my club and here on the course. That positive energy radiates and gives me the oomph I need to keep training hard.”
A final for Women’s K4 500 was raced on Friday night and won by Geneviève Beauchesne-Sévigny (Trois-Rivières, QC), Émilie Fournel (Lachine, QC), KC Fraser (Toronto, ON), and Hannah Vaughan (Dartmouth, NS).
Races continue tomorrow at the Olympic Basin and the team for Senior World Championships will be announced on Monday along with several additional athletes to be named to the Under 23 World Championships team.
CanoeKayak Canada is the national governing body for competitive paddling in Canada. The organization’s vision is to be a Canadian sport for families, communities and champions. From supporting clubs to developing a competitive National Team, CanoeKayak Canada works to grow a sport which is a rich part of Canada’s heritage.
Communications and Marketing Officer, CanoeKayak Canada