Lucien Delfour has gotten his quest for Olympic and national selection off to the perfect start by recording the fastest K1 heat run at the Australian Open in Penrith today.
Delfour was one of seven Australian men to secure a place in Sunday’s semi-final.
The defending champion made light work of the 20 gate course to finish 0.98 seconds ahead of American Michal Smolen in 85.27.
Victorian pair Jaxon Merritt (6th) and Warwick Draper (13th), Western Australian Ben Pope (25th) and Tasmanian Daniel Watkins (29th) were the other Australians to finish inside the top 30 on their first runs to qualify for the semi-final.
The second runs followed shortly afterwards with Melbourne brothers, Al and Tim Anderson both finishing inside the top 10 to make it seven Australian’s through to Sunday’s semi-final.
The men’s C2 heats were also contested in Penrith this afternoon.
Just 0.06 seconds separated the top three boats in the first heat runs with German pair Robert Behling and Thomas Becker coming out on top in 99.30.
Frenchman Gauthier Klauss and Matthieu Peche finished second ahead of fellow countrymen Pierre Labarelle and Nicolas Peschier.
Tomorrow the battle for Olympic selection will intensify with the women’s K1 and men’s C1 semifinals and finals to take place from 8 am AEST.



Canoe Slalom