Mallory Franklin won her second European champion title in women's C1, Benjamin Savšek his fourth in men's C1 and Tereza Fišerova and Jan Rohrer were crowned European champions in extreme slalom on the final day of competition at the 2022 ECA Canoe Slalom European Championships in Liptovsky Mikulaš, Slovakia.

The host nation was a bit shocked after they went empty handed in the men's canoe final, where their canoeists were among the main favourites for the medals. But it was a golden day for Tokyo Olympic champion Benjamin Savšek, the 35-year-old Slovenian paddler producing a superb final run and stayed at the top until the last competitor on the start line - Denis Gargaud Chanut - who was the fastest in semifinal. A big mistake cost the Frenchman a podium, and the celebration in the Slovenian team could begin.

It's the fourth European title for Savšek, who celebrated wins in 2015 in Markkleeberg, in 2019 in Pau and in 2020 in Prague. In addition, he also had an individual bronze medal from the 2012 European Championships in Augsburg.

"Today, it was a really hard fight for this title," Savsek said.

"The course was really difficult, especially at the bottom. I am really happy to hold this pressure before the start and to do it from start to finish without touches, with a clean run," the 2017 world champion said.

Sideris Tasiadis from Germany finished second. This was his sixth individual medal at European Championships, and third silver. Young Spanish paddler Miquel Trave was third.

Great Britain's Mallory Franklin held the pressure and kept her leading position from the semifinal also in the final. At the end, she was 1.72 seconds faster than French canoeist Marjorie Delassus, with Tereza Fišerova from Czech Republic winning the bronze medal.

"It's really really cool. It's only my second title and I'm really happy to do it," Franklin said.

"I've been paddling really well and that being enough is always really nice. It's been a good competition, a little dramatic at times, but I've really enjoyed my paddling. I've come really strong at start of season."

Both Franklin and Fišerova stood on the podium after the afternoon's extreme slalom race. It was 24-year-old Czech paddler who picked up the gold medal after a tough final race. Franklin managed to overtake Slovenian Ajda Novak in the last metres of the course for the silver medal and Novak won bronze at the end.

"I am really happy, this race was really hard for me. At the end, I won gold medal. It's dream! I did not really prepare for this race, I had one training here, so I think I had a lot of luck," Fišerova said after another great success.

In the men's extreme slalom final Jan Rohrer from Switzerland found the fastest line for the European champion title. Two Austrians - Mario Leitner and Felix Oschmautz - kept him company on the podium. After the race Rohrer said: "Today, with such a short course, the start played a really big role and it was leading then to the win."

Next year the European Championships will be held in Krakow as part of the European Games, where canoe slalom will be featured in the sports programme for the first time in history.

Nina Jelenc/ECA

Slovenia Benjamin Savsek Europeans 2022

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