Nothing could separate Portugal’s Fernando Pimenta and Poland’s Slawomir Witczak as they shared gold after a gripping men’s K1 500 final at the International Canoe Federation Canoe Sprint World Cup in Poznan.

It was a fantastic fight to the finish as Pimenta, Witczak and Argentina’s Agustin Vernice battled for glory in the Polish city.

All three pushed for the finish line with Pimenta and Witczak both crossing in exactly the same time of 1:45.29 to tie for gold.

Vernice finished just 0.13 off the joint winners as the Argentina had to settle for bronze.

“I managed to catch him in the last two metres and we both crossed the line together,” said Witczak.

“For a while, I didn’t believe I could do it but I just thought I have to do it and gave all I had.

“It’s really special to get a gold in my country.”

Pimenta added: “It was very close and this is good for people who like to canoeing and sports in general.

“We put on a great show and I am happy to share a podium with a friend.”

It was one of many great races in the non-Olympic events on day two of the ICF Canoe Sprint World Cup in Poznan.

The hosts enjoyed further success with Martyna Klatt and Jakub Stepun coming out on top in the mixed K2 500.

The Polish pair won by 0.47 from Slovenia’s Mia Medved and Rok Smit, while Ukraine’s Nataliia Dokiienko and Oleksandr Zaitsev completed the top three.

Poland’s other gold in the non-Olympic events came from Oleksii Koliadych in the men’s C1 200.

Koliadych celebrated a home gold as he overcome Georgia’s Zaza Nadiradze and fellow countryman Aleksander Kitewski who came second and third respectively.

Germany’s Conrad Scheibner came out on top in the men’s C1 500, triumphing by more than two seconds.

Ukraine’s Taras Mazovskyi claimed silver, with Poland’s Juliusz Kitewski earning bronze.

There was delight for Ukraine in the women’s C1 1000 as Valeriia Tereta powered to victory by almost five seconds.

Czech paddler Martina Malikova crossed in second ahead of Poland’s Paulina Grzelkiewicz who completed the podium in third.

After winning women’s K4 500 gold in the morning, Chinese ace Mengdie Yin secured an individual title with victory in the women’s K1 200.

Yin overcame compatriot Nan Wang to take gold as Poland’s Katarzyna Kolodziejczyk finished behind the Chinese paddlers in third.

Melina Andersson Poznan canoe sprint 2024

There was an all-Swedish battle for gold in women’s K1 1000 as Melina Andersson saw off Julia Lagerstam.

The bronze medal went to Switzerland’s Franziska Widmer.

“I was really hoping to pull out the win so I’m really happy,” said Andersson.

“I was a bit nervous before as it is one of my first 1000 in the seniors.

“I was a little bit nervous as it is not the same as doing it in Sweden.

“It was a good experience for me.

“Hopefully I can do some more 1000.

“My inexperience showed as my race plan could have been better.

“I think I am enroute to being a fast 1000 paddler.”

For all the results from today’s races, click here.

Pics by Bence Vekassy

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