Australian senior slalom paddlers continue their build up to Olympic trials with Jessica Fox knocking off highly fancied Austrian star Corinna Kuhnle in the women's K1, while Delfour, Forsythe and Draper showed they can compete with the likes of Fabian Lefevre, Sebastien Schubert and David Ford as an international field contested the Penrith Whitewater Slalom race on the weekend.
17 year old AIS/NSWIS scholarship holder Jessica Fox showed she is right on track for next month’s Australian Open dominating the women’s K1 event, producing a blistering clean second run of 108.66, to finish 3.67 seconds clear of 2011 women’s K1 World Champion Corinna Kuhnle of Austria. Set to battle Fox for the single women’s Olympic berth, Sarah Grant and Kate Lawrence finished third and fourth respectively, 3.97 and 4.03 seconds off Fox’s winning time.
French champion Fabian Lefevre, who finished third behind Slovakia’s Peter Kauzer at last year‘s World Champs in Bratislava won the men’s K1 event in 98.63 from German Sebastian Schubert. NCE paddler Lucien Delfour was the pick of the Aussies in third after producing two quick clean runs in an impressive performance by the 23 year old, to finish 1.06 seconds off Lefevre’s winning time, while nothing separated the two men vying for the men’s K1 spot in London with Will Forsythe edging Warwick Draper by 0.15 seconds after finishing fourth and fifth respectively.
Last year’s C1 World Champs Bronze medallist Matej Benus took out the C1 event from current World Champion Denis Gargaud Chanut and Germany’s Jan Benzien. In the absence of Kynan Maley and Robin Jeffery, Paddle NSW canoeist Matthew Gabb was the best of the Australian’s finishing in fifth, while Stuart McIntosh (6th) and Christian Fabris (8th) also secured top ten finishes.
The women’s C1 was won by Victorian Leanne Guinea in 1:32.37, 1.23 seconds clear of Penrith Valley Canoe paddler Allison Burrows and Germany’s Lena Stoecklin.
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