March 15, 2009

GB Team Selection 2009 - Results

Unseasonally mild weather, glorious sunshine and a green three-gate wave made for the perfect conditions at yesterday's selection event for the 2009 Great Britain Canoe and Kayak Freestyle Team. Making the cut for the team means a place at the World Championships, being held in Thun, Switzerland, later this year.

Different from previous years, this time selection was just a one day competition. It was held on the infamous Hurley Weir, just west of London on the River Thames. Thankfully the water levels held on 3 gates producing a sweet green wave in the centre. It proved to be quite unretentive at times with many people only manage two or three moves before flushing.

Sam Anderson cleaning into 5th position

I'd spent a fair amount of time practising down at Hurley over the past month or so but despite all my preparation, I was so nervous when it came to my turn to compete. 4 45second-long rides were all you had to show what you could do. I was so stoked to produce in competition what I had been doing in training, and pleased I performed at my best. I was up against some serious competition in the senior women's class, with various current and former Champions taking part. Fiona Jarvie, current European Champion, twice World's Bronze Medallist and my paddling partner for the past week, took 1st place with consistent air blunts and backstabs, making it 12 years on the GB Team. I wasn't sure where my rides would place me, but was ecstatic to find it was 2nd position! Just behind me, was Lowri Davies. Lowri's been at the top for a few years now, winning the Europeans in 2006, but this will actually be her first senior World Champions (as it will be for me too). We were juniors on the team together some 6/7 years ago, so I'm glad to be on the team with her again. I'm super happy for both ladies! Also putting in a good performance was Flic Meares, taking the reserve place in 4th. Here's the Senior Women's Class results:

Here's the junior women's and OC1 results;

In the C1 class, last year's World Cup winner, David Bainbridge left it all to his last ride:

I didn't manage to get a photo of the Squirt results, but in the men's squirt class it was James Reeves, Chris Jones and Pete Cornes taking the top three spots and in women's it was Claire O'Hara, Emma Runciman and Sara James.

The Junior Men's saw a few changes for this year. Local lad, Ben West, moved up from his last year's reserve place to take the win and young Arron Layton put in a solid performance to take 2nd. Rather than busting out the big moves early, Arron played it a bit safe, getting all his basic moves in first. This seemed to be the best tactic for the water level and paid off well for those who went with it. Here's the rest of the results for the junior boys:

In the senior men's category it was local little man, Doug Cooper taking the glory. Lil' Dougie has given himself some what of reputation for talking the talk but yesterday it was all action with his clean pan am and huge aireal back blunts.

Doug Cooper

And here's the senior men's final scores:

For some more photos, Chris Jones has posted some from the women's and C1 class here, thanks for those Chris.

Congratulations to all! I'd especially like to say well done to James Benns, hailing from my old Canoe Club in the flat lands of Suffolk, who made 5th place in the Junior Men's at the tender age of 13!

Well done to all the organisers and volunteers who made yesterday such sucess. Thank You!




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