NSW Institute of Sport (NSWIS) Scholarship Holder Jessica Fox has claimed back-to-back titles, winning gold at the 2024 Canoe Slalom Oceania Championships today in the women’s canoe final.
In similar fashion to her kayak final, Fox made her way down the Penrith Whitewater Stadium course in a clean run, clocking a time of 106.48 seconds. Czech Republic’s Gabriela Satkova finished second, and Evy Leibfarth (USA) in third.
“I am really happy with the weekend so far, to have good feelings on the water and to put down some solid paddling and lift in the final. I am really happy with that,” Fox said.
“I tried to improve on the semi final run. Some areas were a little bit shaky, but I really felt good – especially on the bottom section where there were quite a few challenging moves and a few people had a few problems. I was happy to get to the last gate 23 and have the finish sprint,” she said.
While it’s been a big weekend of racing so far for Fox, it’s not over yet with the Kayak Cross competition to be run this afternoon. Kayak Cross is set to make its debut on the Olympic program in Paris 2024.
“It’s always good to have that racing format where you have the semi finals and finals and the Kayak Cross this afternoon,” Fox said.
“It will be quite tiring I am sure, but we have this format in the world cups so I am getting used to the three discipline format,” she said.
In the men’s canoe final, Czech Republic stood atop of the podium again, this time Lukas Rohan taking out the title.
Rohan’s win saw Czech Republic claim their second gold medal of the weekend, after Jiri Prskavec took out the men’s kayak final on Saturday.
“Actually this was my first full run of this year so it was a bit challenging,” Rohan said.
“On the other hand the guys here are racing for the olympics and we don’t have that pressure, so that is a huge advantage for us and they are racing for everything for the season.
“I just love this country for training and living and it is great to be back after four years,” he said.
Australia’s Brodie Crawford finished second in the men’s canoe final, provisionally qualifying a men’s canoe quota for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.
It was a breakthrough result for Crawford, with Olympic selections to be finalised following next weekend’s 2024 Canoe Slalom AUS Open.
But for Crawford, finishing on the podium after a tough day of racing was a result to be proud of.
“It was high pressure but it felt good. I had a really good semi final but one move cost me a lot of time. I did that move a little bit better (in the final) and the run was solid,” Crawford said.
“I have worked really, really hard over the last six months, I have left no stone unturned, but I pushed myself.
“So when you get on the start line you just think I have done it all, I am prepared there is nothing to worry about, and that gives you confidence,” he said.
Crawford said he’s loved welcoming paddlers from across the world to Penrith, and racing against the world’s best.
“When we go to their home ground it is a lot harder and when they come here it shows the quality of paddlers we have here,” Crawford said.
“We have world champs here next year, so it shows how quick we can be,” he said.

Story courtesy of Paddle Australia

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