Vejen, Denmark — Juniors Georgia Singe and Holly Smith raced to South Africa’s first gold medal at the ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships in Vejen Denmark on Friday morning and that result was followed a short while later by a bronze medal for Saskia Hockly.
After a tight battle over six laps that included four portages, the Western Cape duo of Singe and Smith beat off the challenge from the Spanish pairing of Maria Martinez and Lidia Zornoza with Hungarians Janka Reisz and Klaudia Kmetyo third.
Singe and Smith were sixth and 10th respectively in the junior K1 race on the opening day on Thursday, but teamed up and put together a near-perfect race to claim South Africa’s first gold of the championships.
A couple of hours later, Hockly added to South Africa’s medals when she finished third in the women’s U23 race behind Hungarian Panna Csepe and Czechoslovakian Katerina Milova.
Friday’s podium finish is Hockly’s third World Championship medal in two years after she also finished second in the Junior K2 Women’s race and was third in the Junior K1 in 2022.
The talented youngster will be hoping to collect a fourth medal when she steps up to the senior race and teams up with training partner, mentor and former Surfski World Champion Michelle Burn in the elite race on Sunday.
(Note: Men’s U23 race was too late for publication)
The championships continue until Sunday.
K2 Junior Women
1 South Africa: Georgia Singe & Holly Smith 1:21:26.73
2 Spain: Maria Martinez & Lidia Zornoza 1:21:29.80
3 Hungary: Janka Reisz & Klaudia Kmetyo 1:21:31.77
K1 U23 Women
1 Hungary: Panna Csepe 1:42:50.17
2 Czechoslovakia: Katerina Milova 1:43:07.89
3 South Africa: Saskia Hockly 1:43:36.22
15 South Africa: Jade Wilson1:50:12.12