Achievements and highlights
The Athens Olympics proved to be canoe slalom’s most successful Olympics yet with three top ten results. The 2004 season was also fruitful for the Australian team across the world cup series, with nine top ten results, two of which were 4th places by C1 athlete Robin Bell.
Australian senior athletes recorded strong performances at the 2003 World Cup in Penrith, coming away with one gold, two silver and one bronze medal at the first World Cup of the 2003 season. Justin Boocock and Robin Bell finished first and second in the C1 event ahead of world champion Michal Martikan of Slovakia.
Mia Farrance produced an outstanding performance in the women's kayak event to win a silver medal behind world champion Rebecca Giddens of the United States. The three individual medallists teamed up with Warwick Draper (K1), Mark Bellofiore and Lachie Milne (C2) to win bronze in the World Cup 4CAT teams event.
In 2002, Justin Boocock was the stand-out performer with a third place in World Cup 1 in China and a third placing in the World Cup final in Brazil. Justin also recorded an eighth placing in the World Championships.
In 2001, Robin Bell won silver medals at World Cup events in Augsburg in Germany and Prague in the Czech Republic.
Some of the year-by-year highlights include:
- Five Australian athletes competed at the 2004 Athens Olympics achieving the best overall performance at an Olympic Games:
- 4th, Robin Bell – C1
- 7th, Louise Natoli – K1W
- 9th, Warwick Draper – K1M
- 12th Mark Bellofiore and Lachlan Milne – C2
- Robin Bell’s form was consistent in the C1 class with 4th placings at World Cups 1 and 4th and 5th placings at World Cups 2 and 6.
- Kynan Maley (C1) achieved a number of top ten placings with a 5th at World Cup 3, 7th at World Cup 1 and 8th at World Cup 6.
- In the C2 class, the “race-off” for a place in the 2004 Australian Olympic Team was hotly contested between two boats. Mark Bellofiore and Lachlan Milne placing 6th at World Cup 2, just beating Duncan Proust and Ben Hankinson (8th) to an Olympic debut.
- Penrith hosted ICF Canoe Slalom World Cup #1 in May. Australian athletes used the home-course advantage to achieve the following results:
- Justin Boocock – Gold, C1 class
- Robin Bell – Silver, C1 class
- Mia Farrance – Silver, K1W class
- Mark Bellofiore/Lachlan Milne – 4th, C2 class
- Duncan Proust/Ben Hankinson – 5th, C2 class
- 4CAT Teams event – Bronze
- Kynan Maley finished in 9th position at the 2003 World Championships, qualifying Australia’s first Olympic spot for the 2004 Games.
- The K1W team finished in 4th position in the 2003 World Championships in Augsburg, Germany.
- Robin Bell won Bronze in World Cup 3 at Tacen, Slovenia and won Bronze overall in the World Cup Series for 2003.
- Justin Boocock gained two bronze medals at World Cups held in China and Brazil.
- Athlete Robin Bell won two silver medals in the C1 Slalom class at Augsburg and Prague World Cups. He also gained a silver medal at the Freestyle World Championships.
Australian Slalom Athletes finished as follows:
- Danielle Woodward, 8th
- Robin Bell, 9th
- Kai Swoboda / Andy Farrance, 11th
- John Wilkie, 21st
- At the 1999 World Championships, Robin Bell won a silver medal in the C1 event.
1992 - Olympics
- Danielle Woodward won silver in the K1W event.
- Justin Boocock won a bronze medal at the Junior World Championships. Danielle Woodward won a bronze medal at the PreWorld Championships.