Émilie Fournel (Montréal, QC) is the first paddler to earn a spot on the Canadian Olympic Team. She came back on the second day of the Canadian Sprint National Team Trials to win the Olympic entry in the Women’s K1 500m. The selection came down to a head-to-head race-off in a best two out of three race format on Lake Lanier in Gainesville, Georgia, USA. Fournel finished third last night in the opening final but in a rematch this morning she beat last night’s winner, Michelle Russell (Fall River, NS). This set the scene for a showdown and Fournel came out victorious by a margin of 2.00 seconds.
“I was taking one race at a time and just trying to paddle well,” said Fournel. “I really feel like I’ve come a long way after not qualifying the K4 last year. This year I really had to turn it around and find new strength and new motivation. When I crossed the line I was just proud of myself that I was able to turn it around.”
This will be Fournel’s third Olympics. She competed in the K4 500m in 2008 and raced the K1 500m and K1 200m at the London 2012 Olympic Games.
The Women’s K1 200m spot is still open if Canada is able to qualify an additional quota at the Continental Qualifier back on Lake Lanier on May 19 and 20. Heats and semi-finals for the Women’s K1 200m took place today. A two out of three finals format will determine who will represent Canada at the Continental Qualifier.
Four-time Olympic medalist Adam van Koeverden (Oakville, ON) was successful in winning a second final of the Men’s K1 1000m. This sets him up to compete at Continental Qualifiers in Gainesville, Georgia on May 19 and 20. A win there will earn van Koeverden a quota spot and the Olympic entry.
Mark Oldershaw (Burlington, ON) won a second final in the Men’s C1 1000m. The Olympic bronze medalist will compete for a quota spot at the Continental Qualifier. That will be the second step along the Olympic qualification process which may continue into World Cups.
In the Men’s C2 1000m, Paul Bryant and Roland Varga (both of Richmond Hill, ON) won a second final to solidify themselves as the top Canadian crew for the Continental Qualifier. Bryant and Varga battled back and forth with Ben Russell (Dartmouth, NS) and Gabriel Beauchesne-Sévigny (Trois-Rivières, QC). In the end, only 0.99 of a second separated the two crews.
Ben Tardioli (Ottawa, ON) repeated a win in the second final of the Men’s C1 200m. The result sets Tardioli up to contend at the Continental Qualifier.
Canada can earn a maximum of two quota spots in Men’s Canoe at the Continental Qualifiers. Depending on the outcome on May 19 and 20, World Cups 2 and 3 could be used to assess international performance to determine which Men’s Canoe events Canada will prioritize.
In the Men’s K2 200m, Ryan Cochrane (Windsor, NS) and Étienne Morneau (Québec, QC) doubled down for a second win. The finish came down to the wire with less than a third of a second separating the top three crews.
Marshall Hughes (Waverley, NS) and Pierre-Luc Poulin (Lac Beauport, QC) won another final of the Men’s K2 1000m to take the top Canadian spot in that event.
The top Men’s K2 crews for the 200m and 1000m will race at Continental Qualifiers. If quota spots are earned, they’ll contend for international performance at World Cups to determine which event will be prioritized for Olympic selection.
Laurence Vincent-Lapointe (Trois-Rivières, QC) won a second final of the Women’s C1 200m as Women’s Canoe athletes continued the hunt for carding in an historic first. Katie Vincent (Mississauga, ON) won the C1 1000m final. Still ahead on the program are the C1 500m and C2 500m races.
Action continues through to Sunday at Lake Lanier in Gainesville, Georgia.
Summary of Results
|Women’s K1 500m – race-off||
|Women’s K1 500m – final 2/2||
|Men’s K1 1000m – final 2/2||
|Men’s C1 1000m – final 2/2||
|Men’s C2 1000m – final 2/2||
|Men’s C1 200m – final 2/2||
|Men’s K2 1000m – final 2/2||
|Men’s K2 200m – final 2/2||
|Women’s C1 200m – final 2/2||
|Women’s C1 1000m – final 1/2||
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