British Canoeing has been delighted to welcome Australian Canoeing’s Paracanoe team to Nottingham for the week, leading into the May Regatta, 12 & 13 May, at the National Water Sports Centre.
Four Australian athletes have flown across to Nottingham to train at Holme Pierrepont ahead of the weekend’s competition in which they will take part in a series of races against the British Canoeing Paracanoe team.
All four athletes; Amanda Reynolds, Curtis McGrath, Dylan Littlehales and Susan Seipel, competed in Rio 2016, meaning Britain’s best will be coming up against stiff competition as they prepare for World Cup 1 out in Szeged, Hungary taking place on the weekend, 18 – 20 May.
In the men’s KL2 event, Nick Beighton will come against Curtis McGrath after the pair battled it out at Rio 2016. Curtis triumphed two years ago, claiming the gold medal, with Nick sealing a bronze. The pair will come again later in the day in the VL2 race, which has recently been added to the Paralympic event programme for Tokyo 2020.
Meanwhile, Emma Wiggs will once again come up against Susan Seipel in the women’s KL2 event, where Emma won gold at the Paralympics and Susan took bronze. They will be joined on the start line by recent talent transfer athlete Charlotte Henshaw who will be looking to push both Paralympians all the way after a strong showing in the April selection regatta. 2017 World Championship silver medallist Nikki Paterson completes the line-up in what looks set to be an extremely competitive race.
Racing in the men's KL3, last year’s World Championship bronze medallist Jonny Young, Rio 2016 Paralympian Rob Oliver and Stuart Wood will all come up against Australia’s Dylan Littlehales, who too competed in Rio and reached the semi-finals in this event.
British Canoeing’s Paracanoe Head Coach Scott Simon is delighted to have the Australian Paracanoe team join the British athletes in Nottingham and is looking forward to both teams going head to head.
It's a privilege to welcome the Australian Paracanoe team to Nottingham and have the opportunity to showcase our sport at the May regatta with our very own Ashes battle.– Paracanoe Head Coach, Scott Simon
“It promises to be a great day of racing with World Class athletes from both teams going head to head.
“I wish the very best of luck to all the athletes competing this weekend. It's now over to the athletes racing in the first, of what I hope will become a regular fixture.”
Guy Power, Paracanoe Assistant Coach, believes it has been a good opportunity to come over to Britain.
He said: “We thought it would be a great opportunity to see how British Canoeing work. It is a good stepping stone to the first World Cup so we thought it would be a good experience to come to Nottingham along the way.
“The athletes have all worked really hard. The weekend’s racing will be a good opportunity to see where we are at.”
For a full schedule of the weekend’s racing, click here.
Following the weekend’s racing, both sets of athletes will have their full focus on World Cup 1 as they fly out to Hungary to start the international racing season.
We caught up with KL3 athlete Dylan Littlehales earlier in the week to get his thoughts on the week in Nottingham. Hear what he had to say below.