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Historic win for Ireland at Canoe Slalom World Cup in Pau

Historic win for Ireland at Canoe Slalom World Cup in Pau 11.11.2020

Short international canoe slalom season has come to an end with World Cup race in Pau, France, where history was being made. Liam Jegou won historic first gold medal at World Cup in men's C1 for Ireland, while Swiss paddler Martin Dougoud won his first ever World Cup medal in men's kayak final.

With strict safety measures in place and in time when France was in already in lockdown the second world cup race was held in Pau. The competition weekend will be one of the best in memory of Irish canoeist Liam Jegou who won his first World Cup gold medal and the first gold medal for Ireland at World cup races in men's canoe event. Ireland has been waiting for a medal at World cup races since 1993 when Mike Corcoran picked up silver medal in La Seu d'Urgell.
Jegou was 0.73 seconds faster than Vaclav Chaloupka from Czech Republic and Swiss representative Thomas Koechlin was third.
"I’m really over the moon. I’ve been pushing myself really hard now for several years, and all summer, preparing for events like this. So, I’m absolutely thrilled to put down a big run like this in the seniors, it means a lot," said Jegou, who actually resides and trains in Pau.
Another debutant on the highest podium position was Switzerland's Martin Dougoud who was unbeatable in men's kayak final. This was his first ever World Cup medal. He too resides in Pau so this was a home win, " “I made some mistakes, but it was a good run. Last year I was a little bit stressed and made a lot of mistakes because of the Olympic selection. It’s really strange and really special, so maybe today I was more relaxed."
Young Czech kayaker Tomaš Zima took silver medal, while Thomas Bersinger, competing for Argentina, was third.
In women's kayak final Marie-Zelia Lafont (FRA) won in front of her teammate Romane Prigent, who celebrated World Cup win at first race in mid-October in Ljubljana - Tacen. Viktoriia Us from Ukraine was third.
Viktoriia Us improved her result from Saturday’s kayak final in Sunday's canoe event, finishing second, behind Ana Satila from Brazil, who was also a winner at the first world cup in Slovenia. Tereza Kneblova from Czech Republic won bronze medal in this event.
In extreme canoe slalom final Veronika Vojtova (CZE), Lea Baldoni (CAN) and Sofia Reinoso (MEX) picked up medals, while in men's kayak extreme canoe slalom final Pavel Eigel (RUS), Benjamin Renia (FRA) and Dario Cuesta (ESP) took the podium positions.




Photo: Facebook page - Canoeing Ireland