Back to the action on the giant and impressive Ottawa River feature.

On the 5th day of competition, level is getting higher as we have moved on to K1 Men's quarter-finals as well as semi-finals for the following categories: Junior K1 Women, Junior K1 Men, C1 Men, K1 Women and then K1 Men again.

K1 Men quarter's were full of splendid tricks, showing the very high level of paddling from every athlete. Impressive 4th heat as all the athletes qualified occupying the five first places. Dane Jackson (USA) with 2576.67pts, as well as national heroes Troutman (2716.67pts) and Grady (1753.33pts) demonstrated very high capacities with impressive moves such as helixes and big air screws. Brendan Orton (GBR) was probably one of the most impressive with some of the biggest tricks perfectly thrown and landed, high in the air and with perfect boat control. Also Sam Ward representing Uganda easily found his place for the semis with solid and big scoring moves for a total of 1793.33pts.

As for the K1 Men semi-finals, local champion Nick Troutman delighted the crowd with a perfect and high level paddling run scoring 1510 points. He was followed by the unstoppable Dane Jackson (USA) scoring 1407pts. In 3rd position came the Spanish Joaquim Fontane y Maso with an amazing run scoring 1206pts.

The discrete but talented Brendan Orton (GBR) also made his way through qualifying at the 4th place thanks to perfectly performed air screws, and with a total of 1165pts. He showed impressive runs from the start of the competition. After his run today, he explained that he has mostly been surfing waves these past few years but has always been in Freestyle Kayaking  “which is what I enjoy the most”.  

He pointed out the technical feature here; “At this level, if you miss a pass you are out. Pistol flips is the hardest for me. The only person who is consistent with this trick is Dane Jackson. My favourite is air screw."

At the last place to get to the final is the French Mathieu Dumoulin easily playing with the moves of the waves. He scored 1163pts. 5 different countries for 5 athletes directly to the finals tomorrow !

Junior K1 Women - After 2 impressive runs with her best scoring 185pts, more than 100pts in front of the young British Sophie McPeak, Sage Donnelly (USA) easily made her way to qualify for the finals.

Sage is current Freestyle US national Champion. "I’ve been here for about five weeks training. Before racing I’m just doing my normal routine which is to get up early, do a few practices, rest the day until the competition and listen to music." Sage said she was super proud of her race; she revealed that her favourite’s move is the Helix.

The top athlete is also competing in Canoe Slalom: “I’m trying to keep the same mindset as when I train for Canoe Slalom; it’s quite easy to go back and forward between both disciplines”.

Her compatriot Darby McAdams finished 3rd (71.67pts) before the 2 contenders from Spain Kira Carreto Tejedo (35pts) and Mireia Serres Segarra (33.33pts)

Junior K1 Men was a very tight competition as 1st to qualify, Alec Voorhees (USA), scored a nice 631.33pts right in front of Hugo Anthony with 630pts.

Voorhees declared "today I just wanted to make sure I had my routine and got enough points. I competed in the Worlds in 2013 and I was definitely more nervous here. I put more pressure on myself to do well but it's good nerves." and he added "I put a lot of work in my left air screw, it's a good trick, and then get a panam right after to get more points"

Charlie Blackpool (GBR) finished 3rd with 550pts, Hugo Scott (GBR) 4th with 506.67 and Fabien Lanao 5th with a score of 491.67pts

When it comes to finals, I really like starting last so you can see what the others scores are and you know exactly what to do.

C1 Men - Here again, the 5 athletes of the 2nd heat all qualified for the finals. The 21-years-old from USA Jordan Poffenberger finished 5th with 436.67pts and will then have the possibility to renew his title from 2013. 4th came Seth Chapelle (USA) with 460pts. In 3rd place Sebastien Devred quailfied with a perfectly executed back panam for a total score of 488.33pts. Seth Chapelle (USA) placed 2nd thanks to a clean airscrew followed with an helix tricks (460pts)

And 1st to qualify was Dane Jackson (USA) with an impressive total of 718.33pts "I failed in my first score sitting in the fifth place but I felt quite comfortable to beat it. I managed a better ride and now I’m in the finals. When it comes to finals, I really like starting last so you can see what the others scores are and you know exactly what to do."

Dane also pointed out; “C1 is super hard to stay balanced, it’s all a question to do the move and stay in the move”.

K1 Women semi-finals was synonym of disappointment for the talented Adriene Levknecht (USA) as she scored only 70pts on her 1st run and flushed quickly on her 2nd run without executing any tricks. Same for Nuria Fontane (ESP) and local Katie Kowalski who did not performed enough point to join the top 5 today.

However, happiness and smiles remained for Emily Ward (GBR) qualifying at the top with nice 2nd run scoring 320pts. Emily Jackson (USA), very soft on the wave took the 2nd spot with 291.67pts.

Coming in 3rd position, the Japanese Hitomi Takaku (Bronze in 2013) was absolutely delighted with the third ranking position and her qualification for the finals. She will give the best of herself for the last runs tomorrow; “I wanted to try a pistol flip but I might have more chance tomorrow”.

She had been training here almost one month before the competition to practice "as the feature is very difficult. We don’t have such big waves in Japan, so I’m not used to it”.

Claire O'Hara seemed boosted by the proposal she received earlier this week and finished 4th with a total of 266.67pts; directly followed by the Russian Ekaterina Kulkova with 243.33pts.

Ultimate exciting actions will keep going tomorrow with all the finals, starting at 9am !

Official results here.


Canoe Freestyle