Wildwater Sprint World Championships - qualifications

Robert McIntyre in action at the a World Wildwater championships
Sam Lyons, Sunday, 15 June 2014

A tough day of racing for both Aussie competitors at the World Championships

The third day of competition saw the Adda river in full fury for the qualification runs of the World Wildwater Sprints. The river was running at somewhere around 120 to 130 cumecs and was a challenge for all paddlers with some of the men's K1 even swimming including one of the German paddlers in his second run even though he qualified for the final based on his first run time.

In run 1 of the woman's K1 Maddie Batters acquitted herself with distinction showing good control in the big water and was placed 19th in the field of 22 with a time of 50.75 seconds. The second run saw her improve her time with a 49.84 seconds but unfortunately it was not enough to improve on her 19th place.

In the men's K1 field of 51 competitors it was a nail biting affair after the first run with prospective finalists positioned 7 to 15 split by only 0.8 seconds. Our Robert McIntyre was right on the final cut off for the final in 15th spot in a time of 41.70 seconds hence there was a great deal of importance to be placed on the second run.

His second run time of 41.65 seconds was 9th fastest and one of only 5 paddlers in the top 20 who managed to better their first run times however it was not enough to secure a finals birth with him finishing 16th overall and missing the cut by a mere 5 one hundreds of a second.

Notwithstanding not making the finals both McIntyre and Batters said the experience of paddling on such big and challenging whitewater at a world championship event has been an invaluable experience and one they will never forget for the rest of their lives. Both agreed that it was the biggest whitewater they had raced on thus far in their paddling careers.

The individual finals tomorrow in both individual and in team events will no doubt again provide an exciting and entertaining spectacle and enthralling competition for the medals.