It has been a memorable weekend of racing for Anna Hemmings as she won her sixth World Champion title in the women’s K1 women’s K1 (kayak single). The World Championships took place between 7th – 9th September in Gyor, Hungary. It was an extremely close win with seven countries all close to finish line but it Anna was surged forward determined to grab Gold and won Gold in a time of 1.55.59! Defending her title as World Champion is a fantastic accomplishment for the 30 year from Surrey who made a dramatic comeback to the sport two years ago after taking time off and bravely overcoming Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
Anna paddled exceptionally well considering the heavy rainfall in the previous days (over 3m of rain fell in 3 days). With the portages flooded, Anna who is renowned for breaking away from the competition at the portages, had to change her tactics (Portage refers to the practice of carrying a canoe or other boat over land to avoid an obstacle on the water route (such as rapids or a waterfall in a river), or between two bodies of water. A place where this carrying occurs is also called a portage).
The following day in the K2 (kayak double), Anna went out to win a second Gold in with her partner Louisa Sawers. The start of the race did was tough, with the boat getting stuck in trees, due to the swelling river, despite their best efforts to rejoin the leaders the pair could not make up the minute they lost and the duo came 5th.
Walker and King
It will be a disappointing result for both Anna and Louisa who were very capable of winning the race, but the challenging conditions will also be a learning curve to the pair.
Louisa Sawers is the current double Junior World Champion in Marathon Racing, for K1 and K2 winning both titles in 2006. Louise, the 19 year old from Weybridge is also in the senior squad for Olympic discipline of Flatwater racing and is an essential member of the K4 (kayak quadruple) crew. Anna has also made a successful entry on the Flatwater scene competing in the European and World Championships achieving two top ten positions!
Anna Hemmings was not the only athlete to win a medal, Jessica Walker (17 years old) from Middlesex won Bronze in the Junior K1. She also won Bronze alongside Amoret King (16 years old) from Reading in the Junior K2. Jessica recently won Gold in the Junior & U23 European Flatwater Championships last weekend and she and Amoret won Silver at the same championships. This is a fantastic result for the young paddlers Jessica and Amoret who have had an incredibly successful season!
This has been a truly inspiring World Championships with significant achievements for all of the athletes!
1. Zsofia Dira/Zomilla Hegyi HUN 22.214.171.1242
2. Marcela Krauzova/Martina Vichova CZE 126.96.36.1990
3. Amoret King/Jessica Walker GBR 188.8.131.526
For the full list of results visit http://www.gyor2007.com/eng.html
Picture by Alex Broadway/SWpix.com