A new regatta course which hosted this month’s South American Canoe Sprint Championships in Uruguay was one of the best on the continent and easily capable of hosting major international events, according to International Canoe Federation president Thomas Konietzko.

Mr Konietzko and ICF vice-presidents Cecilia Farias and Lluis Rabaneda attended the championships in Montevideo and praised the vision and commitment of Uruguayan sport leaders.

The venue is located in the centre of Montevideo and is close to the airport. Mr Konietzko said the centre will help develop canoe sports in Uruguay and the region, and will also offer recreational activities for the local community.

The further development of canoeing in South America was the focus of numerous discussions with representatives from national federations.

There were also discussions with Uruguay’s Secretary of Sport, Sebastian Bauza, National Olympic Committee vice-president, Julio Alfaro, about future development of canoe sports in Uruguay and a possible upgrading of the regatta course in Montevideo.

“I took this opportunity to praise the commitment of the Uruguayan government and the Uruguayan Canoe Federation to the construction of the venue,” Mr Konietzko said.

“It is one of the best in South America and is well suited to organising high-class international events. In addition the potential for recreational activities will generate revenues that will help to secure the financing of the venue.”

During the visit the ICF delegation met the President of the Argentinian NOC, Marcio Moccia, and the Secretary General Victor Sergio Groupierre. The successful performance of the Argentine team in Tokyo was a topic of discussion, as were further joint activities in the expansion of canoe sports in Argentina.

They discussed the possibility of implementing special projects together to provide a more professional environment for Argentinian canoe talents.

“It is our objective to develop canoeing in South America even further, and to build on the outstanding audience numbers in this region during the Tokyo Games to make canoeing with all its disciplines even more popular,” Mr Konietzko said.

“The medals for Cuba, Brazil, USA and Canada at the Games in Tokyo show the great potential of the American continent for our canoe sport, and we as the ICF want to help Pan American sport stakeholders to ensure more countries of this region can win medals at important events.”

ICF Uruguay visit 2021

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