Canoe Slalom Olympic day 5 review - C2M & K1W
Ladislav & Peter Skantar maintained Slovakia’s domination as the sunsets on C2M in the Olympics. Maialen Chourraut (ESP) proved beyond doubt that she is the fastest women’s kayak paddler around gates on whitewater. Here is a review of the C2M & K1W semi-finals and finals.
C2M – An incredible 4th Olympic gold for Slovakia
Ladislav & Peter Skantar
David Florence & Richard Hounslow
Gauthier Klauss & Matthieu Peche
Ladislav & Peter Skantar may have been kept out of previous Olympics by their legendary team-mates; Pavol & Peter Hochschorner. In that time, they have consistently proven themselves winning the ICF World Cup series in 2009, 2010 & 2014 and at their first Olympics delivered another gold for Slovakia.
Richard Hounslow & David Florence laid down an almost faultless run which actually was the fastest at both the 1st and 2nd splits. Incredibly, David Florence has won silver medals at each of the last three Olympics.
World No. 1 crew, Gauthier Klauss & Matthieu Peche (FRA) also double ICF World Cup series winners secured themselves an Olympic medal.
The Skantar cousins were over 6 seconds faster than the semi-final won by reigning World Champions Franz Anton & Jan Benzien (GER) who ultimately finished just off the podium in 4th.
K1W – A first Olympic canoe slalom gold for Spain
Maialen Chourraut (ESP) has long been internationally recognised as the smoothest paddler on the circuit. Now we have definitive proof. She is deceptively quick. Had she hit the last gate she would still have won the Olympic title. That’s crazy!!! She was beside herself with emotion having crossed the line. Chourraut has won Spain’s first Olympic gold in canoe slalom.
Luuka Jones (NZL) has been quick throughout these Games and timed her peak performance perfectively. She has been coached since 2013 by Campbell Walsh, the British K1M silver medallist from Athens. “I love the friendship in our sport. We are all friends. I love this place too,” said Jones in the press interviews. It is the first canoe slalom Olympic medal for New Zealand.
Jess Fox (AUS) had enormous pressure on her as London silver medallist, 2014 World Champion and World No. 1. She has still delivered. To be 22-years-old with two Olympic medals points to a future Olympic champion in 2020, 2024 or beyond.
“She was incredible”, said Fox, describing Chourraut with whom she has spent lots of days training together here in Rio. “I love her style”. I am thrilled for Luuka [Jones] too.”
Heat winner Stefanie Horn (ITA) finished 8th and semi-final winner Corinna Kuhnle (AUT) finished 5th, both of whom picked up a touch in the final.
Keep tuning in
We are not quite yet done. Tune in tomorrow for our Most Promising Paddler Award plus a look at the Deodoro legacy.
Continue to follow @PlanetCanoe on Twitter and help use and promote the #ICFslalom hashtag.
If you were completely new to canoeing, then I hope these thrilling Olympics have motivated you to pick up a paddle for the first time. We have enjoyed sharing our passion for this wonderful sport.
John Gregory @gregiej