Slovenian slalomists were very successful at the first race – Australian Open – during their winter training camp in Penrith, with world champion Peter Kauzer and C2 Božič-Taljat all finishing second. This weekend they’ll start at the second race – Oceania Championships. Twelve Slovenian boats will start at this race.
The course which hosted the Olympic slalom in 2000 is pretty crowded this winter with most of the world’s top paddlers training in Australia. This time also some competitors that missed the first race two weeks ago will compete at the Oceania Championships. Organizers expect more than 200 competitors from 24 countries, among which are more than 20 medal holders from Olympic Games and World Championships. Almost all the best Slovenian competitors will take part in this competition. Due to an injury Jure Meglič and Simon Brus had to miss the training in Australia, while some decided to train in Pau, France. Benjamin Savšek, Anže Berčič, Jure Lenarčič and Blaž Cof will compete in men’s C1 race, Eva Terčelj and Urša Kragelj in women’s K1, Peter Kauzer, Janoš Peterlin, Martin Albreht and Matej Poljanec in men’s K1 and C2s Luka Božič-Sašo Taljat and Luka Slapšak-Urban Jarc will compete at the championships. The strong competition will be a good indicator of form for the Olympic season.
The race which will be especially important for Australian paddlers (it will give the answer who will travel to the London Olympics) will start on Friday with heats (8 AM local time), continue with semi-finals and finals of C1m and K1w on Saturday and finish on Sunday with semi-finals and finals in K1m, C1w and C2.