Reigning world champions Vanda Kiszli of Hungary and Mads Pedersen of Denmark will lead the charge when canoe marathon makes it’s The World Games debut in Birmingham, Alabama, next month.

The final list of 40 athletes who will compete in Birmingham has been announced, with three-time world champion Kiszli heading the women’s K1 list, and two-time world champion Pedersen the stand-out in the men’s field.

World class competition is guaranteed for marathon’s The World Games debut, with 2018 world champion Andy Birkett selected to represent South Africa, and 2019 runner-up Jose Ramalho earning the spot for Portugal.

The field also includes Hungary’s Balint Noe, who inflicted a rare defeat on Pedersen over 5000 metres at the ICF canoe sprint world championships in Copenhagen last year, and the 2019 marathon world championship bronze medalist, Franco Balboa of Argentina.

The women’s K1 field includes 2017 bronze medalist Jenny Egan of Ireland.

2012 Olympic bronze medalist Bridgitte Hartley will compete for South Africa, while reigning world U23 marathon champion, Cathrine Rask, will carry Denmark’s hopes.

Quotas for The World Games marathon competition were allocated at the 2021 ICF world championships, based on the results in the senior men’s and women’s K1 races.

Countries then selected which athletes would represent them in Birmingham. Most federations conducted trials to determine the best athletes to compete.

The canoe marathon competition in Birmingham will consist of a short course and regular marathon men’s and women’s kayak race. Athletes will compete over both distances during the two-day competition, with the short-course events held first.

Full team selections can be found here.

Denmark Mads Pedersen marathon world championships Shaoxing 2019

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