The ICF Canoe Marathon Masters World Cup kicked off this weeks’ marathon action in Vila de Prado and once again the strength of men’s and women’s masters racing in South Africa came to the fore as the team bagged 24 medals over the two days of racing.
One the opening day, which hosted the K1 events, the South African team managed to win a total of 10 medals of which six were gold and four were silver.
Impressively for the South African contingent they only bagged golds and silvers on the opening day with Allan Hold taking home the first medal with a silver in the men’s 65-69 K1 showdown.
In the men’s 70-74 K1 race Brian Longley was far too strong for the rest of the field winning the race by just over two minutes. Radoslaw Olszewski was also in fine form in the C1 men’s race for 55-59 year olds when he won by almost four minutes.
The South African team didn’t have to wait for long into the afternoon session to bag their first medals with Nic Oldert and Theo Smit claiming first and second in the 60-64 men’s K1 race. Pierre van der Merwe just missed out by three seconds from making it an all-South African podium.
Amy van Rooyen was the first lady to earn a medal when she won silver in the women’s 35-39 age category K1 race. Following her was Mary Burton who won the women’s 65-69 age group race by an impressive five minutes and 13 seconds.
The Berg River Canoe Marathon champion Graeme Solomon then took home his gold medal by just 0.43 seconds in the men’s 45-49 age category. Wayne Jacobs then notched up South Africa’s ninth medal on the day with silver in the men’s 35-39 age category.
Rounding out the day’s action was current South African senior team star Jasper Mocké’s older brother Dawid. Mocké, who is taking part in his first Masters Cup, won the men’s 40-44 age category by an impressive 22 seconds.
Tuesday’s K2 action proved to be just as fruitful for the South African team as they managed to add another ten medals in the men’s and women’s doubles events taking the teams tally to twenty medals before the popular mixed doubles events.
Colin Wilson and Nic Oldert got the ball rolling with a gold in the men’s 55-59 age category when they fought off fellow South Africans Colin Simpkins and Ronald Pronk who had to settle for second.
Theo Smit and Pierre van der Merwe also won a gold medal, winning the men’s 60-64 age category.
Johan van Rooyen and Vincent Buttrick won South Africa’s first bronze medal with a third in the 70-74 age group.
In the ladies K2 action Debbie Gillett and Lyn Bennett won silver in the 35-39 age category and that was followed by another silver for Lis Hart and Romy Findlay in the 45-49 year old’s race.
These results were followed by two golds from Mary Burton and Elizabeth Russell and Caroline Henderson and Jacquelyn Buttom in the 55-59 and 60-64 age classifications respectively.
Radoslaw Olszewski grabbed another medal in the men’s C2 race when he won gold and then the South African team won another two medals in the mixed racing.
Gavin Dundas-Starr and Lyn Bennett won silver in the 40-44 age group and Chris Visser and Caroline Henderson won bronze in the 55-59 mixed category.
The South African team start their ICF Canoe Marathon World Championship bid on Thursday, 6 September.
For the day one live streaming follow this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EgcWXVvkZIs