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Double crown for Mads Pedersen at his home Canoe Marathon European Championships

Double crown for Mads Pedersen at his home Canoe Marathon European Championships 30.7.2022

Denmark celebrated two gold medals on the third competition day at the 2022 ECA Canoe Marathon European Championships in Silkeborg, the outdoor capital of Denmark. Mads Pedersen added marathon European Champion title to his short race gold he won two days ago, and Bertram Sorensen is the new Junior K1 European Champion. Ukraine, Spain and Hungary also won gold medals today.

26-year-old Mads Pedersen is the new men's senior K1 canoe marathon European Champion after he showed the best form at his home venue in Silkeborg, Denmark. Danish kayaker who is also holder of the World Championships medal in canoe sprint K1 5000 metres event, had been the one to watch at major international canoe marathon competitions in the past years.
In mid-July, Pedersen became the first ever Canoe Marathon World Games champion, after the sport was introduced to the World Games programme with this year's edition. In addition, he is also the reigning World Champion and 2019 European Champion. On the opening day of the 2022 ECA Canoe Marathon European Championships Mads won gold medal in the short race.
In today's final, it took Pedersen two hours, five minutes and 23 seconds to complete the 29,8 kilometres long course. It was a tough race with Spanish representative Ivan Alonso, who was only a second and a half behind. The reigning European Champion Jose Ramalho from Portugal picked up bronze medal in this year's edition.
Pedersen's younger teammate Bertram Sorensen was crowned Junior K1 European Champion. This was one of the tightest finals in canoe marathon as Francisco Santos from Portugal won silver medal with only 0.99 seconds slower time Sorensen had. Hungarian Oliver Varga was third.
In women's senior K1 final, the best Hungarian canoe marathon paddler of last years Vanda Kiszli defended her European Champion title from the season 2021. Kiszli is also the reigning World Games champion and World Champion. The top three ladies paddled together in the group and in the final stage Kiszli found more strength than Samantha Clark from Great Britain who was second. She was fourteen seconds behind. Zsofial Czellai from Hungary was third.
Manuel Campos and Manuel Garrido were in the lead of men's canoe event. Two experienced athletes, both already with medals from major competitions, were first and second in canoe event, where athletes had to deal with a 26.2 kilometres long course. Former Junior and U23 champion Sergio Maciel from Portugal was third.
The short race winner and 2021 women's canoe World Champion Liudmyla Babak paddled towards another major success in her career. In a 15.4 kilometres long race, she crossed the finish line almost a minute and a half ahead of her rivals. Bethany Gill from Great Britain was second and Polish canoeist Paulina Grzelkiewicz third.
On Sunday, the European Championships will conclude with junior men's K2 event and senior women's K2 and men's C2 and K2 events.





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Photo: Marian Sarbu