2009 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships: Ones to watch La Seu d’Urgell, Spain – The 1992 Barcelona Olympics slalom course is once again host to the world’s top slalom athletes as the International Canoe Federation Canoe Slalom World Championships get under way here in the Spanish Pyrenees mountains today through Sept. 13.
In all, more than 300 athletes representing 55 countries will be vying for world titles on the spectacular whitewater slalom park located in the heart of La Seu. New this year are the addition of the fruits of the ICF’s development programme, notably the addition of Nepal and Uganda on the heat sheets as well as a demonstration event comprised of C1 women. Of the core, traditional classes, the following is a quick cheat sheet of athletes to watch in each of the classes.
K1 Women It’s anybody’s guess as to who will stand atop the podium in a deepening field of women paddlers. Current Olympic champ Elena Kaliska (SVK) would like to add to her collection of medals. Equally eager to add a World Championship title to their resumes are this year’s World Cup title-holder Jana Dukatova (SVK) and veteran Stepanka Hilgertova (CZE) who won Worlds here in 1999 as well as other titles in between. A new threat is Austria’s Corinna Kuhnle who’s looking for her first world title as is Germany’s Jasmine Schornberg.