Australia’s Jessica Fox has finished her 2016 canoe slalom campaign with a stunning victory in the K1 in the World Cup final at Tacen, Slovenia.
24 hours after Fox was forced to settle for silver in the final of the C1, the Australian stunned a world-class field to post a comprehensive victory in the season-ending decider.
Fox finished in 77.55 seconds, more than two seconds ahead of Austria’s Corinna Kunhnle, who posted a time of 79.83, with Great Britain’s Fiona Pennie a further 0.13 seconds behind in third position.
“I’m really happy with that race,” Fox said.
“On my semi-final run I made a couple of small mistakes, and I just wanted to fix those for the final.
“It’s been a pretty good season, consistent. I’ve had three podiums in World Cups, but I missed the final in Prague last week so I really wanted to make that final this week.
“The Olympics was obviously the big goal, and to come away with another Olympic medal and to win a bronze was absolutely fantastic.”
The victory provides some compensation for Fox, who had to settle for bronze at the Rio Olympics after winning silver in London four years earlier.
It was a nervous wait for Fox, who qualified fourth fastest for the final and had to wait for Kuhnle, Pennie and Germany’s Ricarda Funk to complete their runs.
All four paddlers completed error-free runs on the dramatically shortened course, which had been reduced to 14 gates after cracks began to appear in concrete at the bottom of the run.
“It’s been a different weekend for us racing here, a few different issues with the water levels, but I think overall it’s been a great race,” Fox said.
“I definitely felt there was no time to waste. You couldn’t flow like in normal races, it was definitely a challenging race.”
It was Fox’s first World Cup win for 2016, after winning silver medals at two earlier events. It was also a happy return for the Australian to Tacen, where she won her first World Cup event back in 2013.