South Africa Dominates Final Day of Masters Marathon in Singapore
The first race of the second and final day of the 2011 ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships Masters events, saw the men set off in their K2 kayaks, heading straight into the low dawn sun. South Africa dominated this field, with three out of four of the kayaks coming from the African continent and the remaining pair coming from New Zealand.
Men’s K2 Masters
The South African pair of Alan Hold and Tim Cornish was first out of the water after the first lap, followed by the two other South African pairs. Last out of the water but still close behind, was the New Zealand pair of Ben Bennett and Keith Alderson.
Robert Maclean and Enslin Van Riet won the Men’s K2 race beating their younger competitors, followed by Nigel Briggs and Gary Atkinson coming second in the race and 1st in the 55-59 age group, 3rd was Bennett and Alderson, placed second in their 55-59 age category, with Hold and Cornish coming in last in the morning race and third in their 55-59 age category.
Talking of their race win Van Riet of South Africa said “This race was not as hard as yesterday’s. In the doubles you get splashed a lot more, so we cooled down more today.” Commenting on the surprise of winning over their younger team mates Van Riet said, “We seized the chance when we saw it and made a race out of this.”
Coming second in their 55-59 category, New Zealander Bennett said of the race, “This was our first outing together in the doubles. I am very happy with this podium win. We expected the South African boys to work together and they did.”
Women’s K2 Masters
Four pairs started the Women’s Masters K2 race at just gone 8am on Thursday morning, following shortly after their male counterparts.
The South African pair of Minnie Kretzschmar and Elizabeth Burton going into their last lap of the 17.2km race at 9.16am. Followed by Marina Hermans and Julie Slattery of Belgium, with Newton and Mcarthur, the Australian pair coming in 11 minutes after the first K2 boat. Last into the final portage was Chellew and Buck, competing in the 60-64 age category, and mustering enough energy to run down the 110-metre portage track.
Hermans and Slattery of Belgium entered the final portage first, starting the final 1000 metres before their competitors. They were closely followed by Australians Newton and Mcarthur. Margaret Buck and Dianne Chellew from Australia came in an impressive third in this race, and first in their age category, 60-64.
Men’s C2 Masters
The two Spanish and one Serbian pair kicked off the Men’s Masters C2 race, kneeling throughout, they headed into the 17.2km race, with four laps around the Marina Bay course ahead of them. The Spanish pair of Areal and Serrano being the only canoe in the 35-39 age category, came out of the water at the first portage, followed by Lopez and Ramos of Spain, with Serbian’s Tosic and Sabian last into the first portage. The third portage saw the two Spanish pairs open up the gap ahead of the Serbian C2 team.
In the last portage of the race, Areal and Serrano lead the second C2 pair of Lopez and Ramos by three minutes. Areal and Serrano soon after won this race, coming first in the 35-39 age group, with Ignacio Lopez and Jose Carlos Ramos finishing shortly after, to take the 40-44 C2 Men’s title, with the Serbian pair coming into the portage 7 minutes after the second pair to take on the last 1000metres of the race, heading towards the finish line to take second place in the 40-44 age group category.
Jose Carlos Ramos, the Spaniard on his C2 race 40-44 age category win said “We did it, we did it even in this heat and humidity. This is certainly hotter and more humid than in Spain.”
When talking of Spain’s chances at these Championships, Ramos said “We have a strong team here. In the Masters K2 race, Martinez and Herrador should win in their 45-49 age category, they have a good chance.”
About the ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships
The ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships was first held in 1988 and is recognised worldwide as the sport’s main event as it is not an Olympic discipline. Jointly organised by the ICF and the Singapore Canoe Federation, the 19th World Championships will be set in the visually stunning setting of Marina Bay and will boast Singapore’s business and financial district as its scenic backdrop – opening up the sport to a new spectrum of spectators. Close to 500 athletes and officials from 38 countries are expected to compete in six different race categories of distances from 17 km to 30 km. http://www. canoemarathon2011.org
About the International Canoe Federation
The umbrella organisation of all national canoe organisations worldwide, the International Canoe Federation (ICF) is headquartered in Lausanne, Switzerland, and administers all aspects of canoe sports worldwide.
About Singapore Canoe Federation
The Singapore Canoe Federation is the National Sports Association responsible for the management, coordination, development and promotion of canoeing in Singapore. It represents the interest of its athletes and members to Singapore Sports Council, Singapore National Olympic Committee, the public and other international canoeing bodies.
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Fulford Public Relations
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