The next generation of future Olympic aspirants have arrived in Hungary ahead of the ICF Junior and U23 World Championships which commence in Szeged tomorrow.
28 Australians will contest this year’s World Championships which to feature athletes from 73 countries.
Queensland trio Alyce Burnett, Jordan Wood and Bill Bain, and South Australian Cat McArthur lead a strong Australian team, having already represented their country at senior level.
Burnett and McArthur have spent the lead up alongside the junior and U23 women, and 200 metre men at the European Training Centre in Italy.
The squad also completed a successful lead in by dominating the Auronzo International Regatta a fortnight ago where the Australians won 21 gold medals.
At last year’s Junior and U23 World Championships in Canada Burnett narrowly missed a medal in both the K1W 500 and K1W 200 finishing fourth and sixth respectively.
Now at 21, the Sunshine Coast paddler will be hoping to break through for her first U23 Worlds medal this weekend.
McArthur has established herself as a strong team boat paddler at senior level and will contest the U23 K2W 500 and K4W 500 events in Szeged.
She will team up with Kawana Waters kayaker Alyssa Bull in the double, while Victorian Rebecca Mann and Western Australian Shannon Reynolds will join them in the K4.
The girls will be looking to improve on their ninth placing last year.
In 2013 Bain won Australia’s only medal, bronze in the U23 K1 1000. This year however the event will be raced by training partner Wood.
Wood dominated the selection trial at the Oceania Championships winning gold in all three U23 1000 metre events.
The 19 year old made his ICF World Cup debut earlier in the year recording a 19th place finish in the K1 1000 in Milan.
While Wood is considered one of the main contenders, Local Hungarian star Bence Dombvari will be the man to beat after he won bronze at the senior World Championships in 2013.
Bain will get his chance to feature on the podium in the K4 1000 event alongside Wood, South Australian Zac Ryan and Currumbin Creek paddler Joel McKitterick.
The 1000 metre men have been busy training alongside the senior men in Szolnok and will be aiming to improve on their seventh place finish last year.
Holdfast Bay kayaker Glenn Rypp and Currumbin Creek paddler Michael Booth will contest the K2 1000.
In the U23 200 metre events South Australian Callum Dunn will contest the K1 event, while Wildwater star Robert McIntyre and fellow New South Welshman Mark Stowe will make their U23 Worlds debuts in the K2 200.
While much of the spotlight will be centred on the U23 athletes looking to make the step up to senior competition in the coming year a host of junior athletes stamped themselves as future stars with some encouraging performances at the recent regatta in Auronzo.
One of those was West Lakes teenager Josie Bulmer. The 17 year old won five gold medals and has been rewarded with the junior K1W 500 event in Hungary.
Bulmer will also line up in the K4W 500 alongside fellow South Australian Francesca Kidd, Kawana Waters paddler Brianna Massie and Rachel Duncan of the Sydney Northern Beaches Kayak Club.
Kidd will also team up with 16 year old Gold Coast paddler Chloe Sterry in the K2W 500.
The other junior women’s paddler to feature will be Caitlin Gilliman in the K1W 200. Gilliman won gold in Auronzo and is aiming to make the A final this weekend.
Kawana Waters junior Jy Duffy was the top male performer throughout the domestic season in Australia earlier in the year.
The 17 year old will contest the K1 1000 and K4 1000 events and is aiming to reach the A final in both.
Last year’s junior K4 1000 crew finished fifth and with another year of racing under their belts a medal is not out of the equation.
Duffy will be joined by Avoca Beach kayaker Riley Fitzsimmons, and South Australian pair Sean Lohse and Jayden Ellis.
Fitzsimmons will double up in the K2 1000 alongside Simon McTavish.
Western Australian trio Alex Graham, Nick Pond and Sam McTigue will contest the junior 200 metre event with Graham lining up in the K1 while Pond and McTigue will do battle in the K2.
Racing is scheduled to commence on Thursday 17th July at 9am local time (5pm AEST). Racing will conclude on Sunday 20th July.
Please follow the links below for more information.
K1W 500 Alyce Burnett
K1 200 Alyce Burnett
K2W 500 Cat McArthur / Alyssa Bull
K4W 500 Cat McArthur / Alyssa Bull / Rebecca Mann / Shannon Reynolds
K1M 200 Callum Dunn
K1M 1000 Jordan Wood
K2M 200 Rob McIntyre / Mark Stowe
K2M 1000 Glenn Rypp / Michael Booth
K4M 1000 Joel McKitterick / Bill Bain / Zac Ryan / Jordan Wood
K1W 500 Josie Bulmer
K1W 200 Caitlin Gilliman
K2W 500 Francesca Kidd / Chloe Sterry
K4W 500 Francesca Kidd / Brianna Massey / Rachel Duncan / Josie Bulmer
K1M 200 Alexander Graham
K1M 1000 Jy Duffy
K2M 200 Nick Pond / Sam McTigue
K2M 1000 Riley Fitzsimmons / Simon McTavish
K4M 1000 Sean Lohse / Jayden Ellis / Jy Duffy / Riley Fitzsimmons
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