The world’s best canoe sprint and paracanoe athletes will be out in force in one week as the 2023 International Canoe Federation Canoe Sprint and Paracanoe World Championships and Paris 2024 qualifiers get underway in Duisburg, Germany.

The sport’s biggest names will all be there – Carrington, Varga, Harrison, Queiroz, Sun, Xu, McGrath, Henshaw - 986 athletes from 90 nations vying for the hottest tickets in town – a chance to compete in next year’s Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Final team entries have closed for the championships, revealing the tactics and team plans to qualify as many athletes as possible for next year’s Games. No athletes will qualify in Duisburg, however teams will earn quotas for the Olympics and Paralympics.

Only in the men’s and women’s K4 500 will all the quotas be allocated in Duisburg. Ten countries will know by the end of next week if they will have at least four athletes in Paris.

Among the athletes making their first international appearance for the year next week will be reigning Olympic champions Nevin Harrison from the United States, and Isaquias Queiroz from Brazil.

Harrison will be trying to earn the United States a quota in the women’s C1 200, while Queiroz will be hoping to book Brazil a ticket in the men’s C1 1000.

Germany’s three-time Olympic gold medalist, Sebastian Brendel, has put his retirement plans on hold to contest the men’s C1 1000 next week, while Tonga’s Pita Taufatofua, who tried to make Olympic history by qualifying in both taekwondo and canoe sprint for the Tokyo Olympics, will be also be back in Duisburg.

New Zealand’s Aimee Fisher, who chose to withdraw from her national squad in the lead-up to Tokyo because of an internal dispute, will race in the women’s K2 500 alongside former ICF ocean racing world champion, Danielle McKenzie.

Five-time Olympic gold medalist Lisa Carrington will concentrate on the K1 500 and K4 500 in Duisburg, and has also entered the non-Olympic K1 200 – the event where she won her first Games gold medal in 2012.

Hungary’s reigning men’s K1 1000 Olympic gold medalist, Balint Kopasz, will concentrate on the K2 500 alongside Bence Nadas in Duisburg, with reigning Olympic silver medalist Adam Varga racing the K1 1000.

There will be strong representation from every continent in Duisburg, with Cook Islands, Belize, Cyprus, Guam, Honduras, Iraq, Kenya and Tunisia among the countries to have entries in next week’s events.

The ICF Canoe Sprint and Paracanoe World Championships begin next Wednesday and will run through until Sunday. More information can be found on the event webpage.

Australia Curtis McGrath VL3 Tokyo Paralympics

Canoe Sprint
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