The first event of the Australian summer produced some exciting racing with a host of promising Junior and U23 athletes stepping up in the absence of Australia’s better known 1000 metre men.
Fresh after making his senior World Championships debut earlier in the year, Gold Coast kayaker Jordan Wood showed his class in the open men’s K1 1000 event, firstly winning his heat before going on to win the final in a dominant display.
The 20 year old won in an impressive time of 3:36.08, 2.23 seconds ahead of Currumbin Creek paddler Michael Booth with Avoca Beach kayaker Lachlan Tame finishing third.
In one of the final races of the day Tame improved on his K1 performance combining with Western Australian Todd Brewer to win the men’s open K2 1000 final.
The pair won in a quick time of 3:17.97, 0.80 seconds ahead of Holdfast Bay kayaker Glenn Rypp and Western Australian Daniel Bowker. South Australian duo Luke Haniford and Zac Ryan combined to finish third 1.80 seconds further back.
In the junior men’s events Queensland’s Jy Duffy and New South Welshman Riley Fitzsimmons were the standout performers firstly combining for victory in the U18 K2 1000 final before later in the day finishing first and second in the U18 K1 1000 final.
They won the K2 1000 final in 3:28.35, 5.81 seconds ahead of Tasmanian Alexander Duggan and South Australian Jayden Ellis, with Sean Lohse and Jayden Newell in third.
In the K1 1000 final Duffy dominated winning in a fast time of 3:35.86, 6.40 seconds ahead of Fitzsimmons with Ascot’s Alexander Graham finishing third.
Remarkably Duffy’s winning time was faster than Wood’s winning time in the open final.
Bayswater athletes dominated the men’s U16 events with Anthony Carbone and Luke Morton completing a one-two finish for the Western Australian club in the K1 1000 final.
Carbone won in 4:07.50, 1.95 seconds ahead of Morton with West Lakes’ Reece Bachus third in 4:12.16.
The U16 K2 1000 final was won by the New South Wales pairing of Angus Schmidt and Jakob Hammond in 3:54.96. They finished comfortably clear of Tasmanian Brad Rubock and Morton who recorded a time of 4:01.96.
Canadian Emilie Fournel got the better of the senior Australian women in the open K1 1000 final.
Less than half a second separated the top three place getters with Fournel holding on for the victory in 4:01.03, 0.38 seconds ahead of Manly Warringah kayaker Naomi Flood with Bernadette Wallace close behind in third.
The absence of the senior women in the K2 1000 event provided a chance for Australia’s next tier of emerging paddlers to make their mark and it was the Queensland pairing of Stacey Higgins and Madi Rose who stepped up winning the final in 4:03.72.
Victorian duo Marlena Ahrens and Madeleine Hurst finished second 4.22 seconds behind Higgins and Rose, with Coco Howcroft and Catherine McArthur combining for third.
In the junior women’s events, local West Lakes’ product Josephine Bulmer completed the double in the women’s U18 category first combining with fellow South Australian Francesca Kidd to win the K2 1000 final before later in the day executing her race plan to perfection in the K1 1000 final.
Bulmer won in 4:19.37, 1.47 seconds ahead of Kidd with Caitlin Gilliman following closely behind in third.
In the U16 events Sunshine Coast kayaker Siarn O’Neill won the K1 1000 final in 4:43.22, 2.26 seconds ahead of Sydney Northern Beaches’ teenager Hannah Yeates.
Western Australian duo Monique Carbone and Yale Steinepreis won the U16 K2 1000 final well clear of Sophie Pope and Emily Braggs, and India Tunn and Anneka Kidd who finished second and third respectively.
The canoeists also featured on the opening day with local favourite Jason Nejman edging Varsity Lakes’ paddler Rain Metsoja by just 0.22 seconds to win the open C1 1000 final in 4:35.74.
South Australian Benjamin Keogh finished a distant third before later in the day combining with fellow West Lakes’ paddler Jace Bayliss to win the C2 1000 final in 4:41.25.
West Lakes’ paddler Sam Germein and Victorian Amanda Reynolds show their class in the paracanoe events with both athletes clear winners to their respective classes in the men’s and women’s PC K1 1000 finals.
Racing will continue on Saturday morning from 8:30am local time with the open men’s K1 500 heats.
Please follow the links bellow for Live Results, Start lists and more information. Live race updates will be posted on the Team Australia Facebook and @AUSCANOE Twitter accounts.