Canoeing: Prindis and Kuhnle Win K1 Gold at Canoe Slalom European Championships

Vit Prindis and Corinna Kuhnle strike gold in their respective kayak events at the 2021 Canoe Slalom European Championships. The event is also the final Olympic qualifier where the highest ranked eligible nation qualified a spot to compete at the games. The European Championships is currently being held in Ivrea, Italy from May 6th to May 9th 2021.

The first run of the heats in the women’s K1 slalom was won by Germany’s Cindy Poschel whom finished the course in 86.59 seconds, 1.37 seconds ahead of her compatriot Ricard Funk, bronze medalist at the 2017 and 2018 World Championships. The second run, which allowed ten more athletes to join the top 20 in the first run advancing to the semi-finals was won by Slovakia’s Eliska Mintalova whom recovered after a poor first run to finish the course in 84.85 second.

The semi-final race was won by 2016 Olympic gold medalist Maialen Chourraut of Spain whom had an errorless run to finish with a time of 96.43. That would not repeat in the final where Austria’s Corinna Kuhnle, 2017 European Championship gold medalist finished the course 0.47 faster than Slovenia’s Eva Tercelj to win gold with a time of 91.42. The bronze medal was won by Funk (95.34). The Olympic quota was won by Switzerland’s Naemi Braendle.

In the men’s K1 slalom the first heat run was won by Italy’s Giovanni De Gennaro whom completed the course in 74.93 seconds to advance along with the top 30 to the semi-finals. In the second heat, ten more athletes also advanced. The run was won by Germany’s Tim Maxeiner whom despite suffering a two second penalty finished the course with a time of 79.87 seconds.

Austria’s Felix Oschmautz won the semi-final run with a time of 80.88 seconds, just 1.21 seconds ahead of De Gennaro. As no eligible nation reached the finals, the Olympic quota was won by Poland’s Krzysztof Majerczak. The final was won by 2017 World Championship silver medalist Vit Prindis of the Czech Republic. He edged out De Gennaro by 0.75 seconds to finish the course in 81.90 seconds. The bronze medal was won by Slovenia’s Peter Kauzer.

This was the final normal opportunity for European nations to qualify in men’s and women’s K1 slalom. However, there is still one more women’s K1 quota remaining due to reallocation. The European Championships concludes tomorrow with the canoe events.

Qualified Nations

Men’s K1 Slalom
* Poland

Women’s K1 Slalom
* Switzerland

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