Australia’s future Olympic sprint paddlers are heading to New Zealand this weekend to contest the Asia Pacific Sprint Cup at Lake Karapiro in Cambridge, New Zealand next week (10-12 May 2019).
The Asia Pacific Cup offers Australia’s up and coming sprint talent the opportunity to gain international racing experience as well as the chance to learn from Australia’s top sprint athletes with Olympic champion and three-time Olympian and Olympic medallist Kenny Wallace (QLD), London 2012 Olympian Jesse Phillips (WA) as well as Olympic medallist and dual Olympian Ramon Andersson accompanying the team as members of the coaching team.
Now in its second year, the Asia Pacific Cup will be hosted by Canoe Sprint New Zealand at Lake Karapiro from 10th – 12th May 2019 after the inaugural event took place in Adelaide, South Australia in May last year.
The Asia Pacific Cup is a regatta for junior and developing canoe sprint athletes competing in the Under 16, Under 18 and Under 21 age groups. The event is the result of an international collaboration between Australian Canoeing, Canoe Racing New Zealand and the Japan Canoe Federation with the aim to create an event for developing athletes.
Last year’s winner of the Asia Pacific Cup Australia will be represented with a team of 34 athletes with a number of the athletes using the event as the final specific race preparation for the ICF Canoe Sprint Junior and U23 World Championships in Pitesti, Romania, 1-4 August 2019. The team includes 11 under 16, 17 under 18 and 6 under 21 athletes
“We love racing the Europeans, but they are literally on the other side of the world, so we might as well race our neighbours and everyone in and around us first. The Asia Pacific Cup is a perfect platform for our up and coming athletes to practice their racing and strategise about how they are going to take on the rest of the world. We’re giving them the experience to race against each other and we are also helping some of the developing countries in the sport to get better in what they do and the sport will thrive from it,”Ken Wallace (QLD)said about the event, which he says is a “no-brainer” and an important initiative for the development of kayaking in the Asia Pacific region.
“I was helping out at the event last year and it was awesome to have the young guys and girls come up and ask question. But it was also great for me to see how they do things and how other countries are doing it. We can all learn from each other, I’m learning a lot from these kids and hopefully, they learn one or two things from me as well. Seeing a lot of them paddle, I say that technically they will do something special and the world is at their feet,”Wallace said, who will be coaching the Asia Pacific Cup Team as well as the Olympic Hopes Team later this year and is enjoying the opportunity to share his knowledge with the next generation and vice versa learning from them.
“We have selected a strong team and the regatta provides the perfect development opportunity for our developing group of athletes. It’s a short trip, but our athletes will get plenty out of it with some high-quality racing and strong competition particularly from New Zealand and Japan across all age groups,” Paddle Australia’s National Pathways lead and former Olympic coach David Foureur explained.
“It’s great for the athletes to be able to race again and it really helps keep our Junior and under 23 world championship team members to be in touch. It will also provide more valuable race experience for our younger team members (U16 and U17) who will race the Olympic Hopes regatta in Bratislava in September.”
“I can’t emphasise the value of this event enough. I believe it’s something that has been lacking in our system for a while. The timing of it is perfect for our developing group, it is a great launching pad for those athletes racing at the next level later in the year,” Foureur added.
“And for the other team members who may not be going to World Championships or Olympic Hopes this year the Asia Pacific Sprint Cup provides a suitable level of competition at the right time of the year. It gives them the opportunity to have a short break when they return to Australia and then have a very solid “off” season in preparation for the 2019/2020 domestic season. I expect they will be back at the start of next season stronger, fitter and faster and more enthusiastic and thus setting the foundation for their future in the sport.”
The team will depart Australia on Saturday 4th May and return on 13th May and will spend the first few days preparing for the event in a training camp environment.
In the second edition of the Asia Pacific Cup, five countries will be competing in New Zealand including Australia, Japan, Singapore and Cook Islands.
The regatta offers K1, K2, K4 in 200/500/1000m distances depending on age group, and consists of national junior development paddlers in three age groups: U16, U18, U21.
Results will be available here: https://liveresults.co.nz/
About the Asia Pacific Sprint Cup
The Asia Pacific Cup is a junior development competition between NZ, Australia, Japan and other Asia Pacific nations designed to give U21 selected paddlers more international competitive opportunities.
The Asia Pacific Sprint Cup was launched last year in Adelaide and takes place annually during the first two weeks of May with New Zealand hosting the event in 2019, Japan in 2020 and Australia again in 2021 on an ongoing rotational basis.
The Asia-Pacific Sprint Cup is open to any country. In the first few years it is expected that the largest national teams will be from Australia, New Zealand and Japan, who have already committed to the event. The event is expected to grow in the future and to become an International Regatta of increasing quality and recognised by the International Canoe Federation.
The regatta offers K1, K2, K4 events in 200/500/1000 distances in three age groups U16, U18 & U21.
Each participating country will send National Teams reflecting the U16, U18 and U21 structure and races will be held in each age category over Olympic race distances with a maximum of three entries for the men and women’s K1/K2 per country; two entries for the men and women K4 per country and one entry for relays per country. There will also be some mixed events.
2019 Asia Pacific Sprint Cup, Lake Karapiro, New Zealand 10th – 12th May 2019
Alderson, Jeremy (WA), Allen, Ashby (NSW), Hardwick, Daniel (QLD), Hyde, Tim (WA), Schooley, Toby (NSW)
U18 MEN: Brodhurst-Hill, Carter (QLD), Egger, Luke (WA), Kneebone-Ellis, Jesse (SA), Koekemoer, Tinus (NSW), Kucharski, Daniel (SA), Newton, Eli (NSW), Sheppard, Jarrah (NSW), Wilson, Kobe (WA)
U21 MEN:Bacchus, Reece (SA), Cunningham, Fletcher (NSW), Hammond, Jakob (NSW), Neville, Ethan (NSW),
U16 WOMEN:Bates, Demi (SA), Brown, Harriet (WA), Clarke, Riley (NSW), Good-Gerne, Angelina (WA), Richardson, Chaise (QLD), Rupenovic, Isabelle (NSW)
U18 WOMEN##:Fay, Alicia (QLD), Karlen, Kailey (NSW), Massie, Jenaya (QLD), Ray, Yasemin (WA), Schoene, Ashlee (SA), Smyth, Charli (SA), Van der Kwartel, Alisa (NSW), Webber, Caitlin (SA), Wills-Grace, Phoebe (QLD)
U21 WOMEN:Kelly, Lucinda (QLD), Smith, Jemma (NSW)
## Some athletes may race U21 at AP
David Foureur – Team Leader & Head Coach
Tahnee Morris – Team Manager
Info about event see HERE