Junior & U23 World Championships provide invaluable experience for next-gen Wildwater paddlers

Credit: Aleš Berka

Six Australian paddlers have proudly represented the green and gold at the ICF Junior and U23 Wildwater Canoeing World Championships in Roudnice Nad Labem, Czech Republic.

Australia’s national men’s Canoe champion Rob Janiszewski recorded Australia’s highest finishes, placing 8th in the Men’s U23 C1 Sprint Final and 13th in the Men’s U23 C1 Classic Individual event.

Janiszewski said he was stoked to have achieved his personal goal in Roudnice Nad Labem.

“Overall I am super thrilled to have competed in Czechia, it was a perfect way to finish my U23 career,” he said.

“I think it was almost perfect, nothing really went wrong event wise, the venue was great.

“The highlight for me was the C1 Sprint final, reaching my goal. I wanted a top-8 [result] and I placed 8th so I’m really happy with that. I had a good run in the final, everything went well and I competed with the best.

“I can hold my head high knowing I did what I came here to do.”

Robert Janiszewski. Credit Aleš Berka

Tom Elms (18th – U23 K1 Sprint), James Humphry (19th – U23 K1 Classic) and Tom Ladson (20th – U23 K1 Sprint) all recorded impressive top-20 results.

The trio of U23 K1 paddlers also joined forces for the two team events, where they placed 7th in both the Team Classic and Team Sprint events.

At their debut World Championships event, Junior paddler Huxley Luntungan placed 27th in the Men’s Junior K1 Classic and 33rd in the K1 Sprint, while Riley Galae placed 36th and 41st respectively.

Luntungan said he loved his debut international competition and it has made him hungrier for more opportunities to represent the green and gold.

“My first Junior/U23 World Champs was an amazing experience and a big eye opener to the standard of competition at a world stage,” he said.

Huxley Luntungan. Credit Aleš Berka

“My highlight of this competition would have to be competing at such a high level, but I have really enjoyed meeting new people from around the world. 

“My next focus in wildwater canoeing would be to try and improve my ranking at each international competition from now on, to meet more people, and to improve my skills in the whitewater,” he said.

Australian Results at the  ICF Junior and U23 Wildwater Canoeing World Championships

Individual Sprint Results:
Robert Janiszewski – 8th (Men’s U23 Canoe)
Tom Elms – 18th (U23 Kayak)
Tom Ladson – 20th (U23 Kayak)
James Humphry – 25th (U23 Kayak)
Huxley Luntungan – 33rd (Junior Kayak)
Riley Galea – 36th (Junior Kayak)

Sprint Team
U23 K1 Team of James Humphry, Thomas Elms & Thomas Ladson – 7th

Individual Classic Results:
Robert Janiszewski – 13th (Men’s U23 Canoe)
James Humphry – 19th (Men’s U23 Kayak)
Thomas Elms – 27th (Men’s U23 Kayak)
Thomas Ladson – 33rd (Men’s U23 Kayak)
Huxley Luntungan – 27th (Men’s Junior Kayak)
Riley Galea – 41st (Men’s Junior Kayak)

Classic Team
U23 K1 Team of James Humphry, Thomas Elms & Thomas Ladson – 7th


Next articlePaddle Pathways | Natalia Drobot bursting onto the Canoe Sprint World Cup Circuit