The Australians have upped the ante as they returned to the Regattabahn Duisburg for the second day of the 2023 ICF Canoe Sprint and Paracanoe World Championships in stunning fashion.

The Australians have upped the ante as they returned to the Regattabahn Duisburg for the second day of the 2023 ICF Canoe Sprint and Paracanoe World Championships in stunning fashion.

13 Aussie boats took to the water on day two, with Olympic and Paralympic quota positions up for grabs. Western Australia’s Yale Steinepreis was the first Australian on the course, setting the pace for the day for her Team Australia teammates in a huge K1 200 heat win.

Steinepreis crossed the line in first, in a strong heat which included New Zealand’s most decorated Olympian and five-time Olympic gold medalist Lisa Carrington.

“It was pretty awesome to be out there, I’m really grateful for the experience to race a K1 race in this competition. Not many of us get to double up at Worlds so that was cool, and to take out the win, even in a heat, is great,” Steinepreis said.

“On the sideline I could hear my teammates and my coach telling me to go for it, and to get that win is awesome.”

“I admit I’m pretty nervous in the K1, but I picked it up and managed to get a great end result,” she said.

Tokyo Olympic gold medalists Tom Green and Jean van der Westhuyzen enjoyed their first race together, in the men’s K2 500 heats, cruising down the course in style to take out their heat.

World Championship debutants Kailey Harlen and Natalia Drobot lined up in their first Olympic qualification event, the women’s K2 500. The young duo showed poise as they paddled their way to a semi finals berth in what was a personal best time for the pair.

Mark Daniels also made his World Championships debut, achieving a personal best time and joining teammate Curtis McGrath in the semi finals. McGrath finished second in his heat behind Uzbekistan’s Khaytmurot Sherkuziev.

Fellow West Australian Kathleen O’Kelly-Kennedy also raced a personal best time and is through to the women’s KL3 200 semi finals.

Rounding out the day for the Paralympic program was defending World Champion Ben Sainsbury, who continued his red hot form to take out his men’s VL1 200 heat and make his way through directly to the final.

“It’s such a good environment here, with the crowd getting pumped up and a nice, gentle tailwind which is perfect for the Va’a,” Sainsbury said.

“I managed the steering and executed the way I wanted to … I know we can go a little bit faster so I’m keen for the final.

“Racing two boats [here at World Championships], it’s really great to get straight through to the final. Now we’ve got the semi for the kayak, and hopefully I can make the final there as well.

“The kayak is the Paralympic qualifying event, and I really want to get the green and gold boat on the startline for Paris,” he said.

Fellow defending World Champions Aly Bull and Jackson Collins also returned to the boat in which they won gold at last years’ World Championships. The Queensland duo crossed the line in first in a time of 1:34.480.

The afternoon session saw the first of the semi finals race, with five Aussie boats on the start line.

Fletcher Armstrong took on a red hot field in the men’s K1 200 semi finals. Armstrong crossed the line in sixth and will race in Saturday’s C Final.

Two-time Olympian Alyce Wood continued her winning form to take our semi final 3 of the women’s K1 500. She’ll now line up in Saturday’s final, with the top six athletes will qualifying quota positions for next year’s Paris Olympic Games.

Armstrong teamed up with New South Wales teammate Jakob Hammond in the men’s K1 1000 to deliver a strong result, and qualify for Saturday’s A Final.

In a red hot field, Ben Manning finished sixth in his men’s C1 1000 semi final, just missing out on the A Final. He’ll now race in Saturday’s B Final.

Tokyo Olympic gold medalist Green closed out the day in sensational style for the Aussies with a commanding win in the men’s K1 1000 semis to book his spot in Saturday’s A Final.

Racing will return to the Duisburg course on Friday 25 August from 6pm AEST. The first medals will be contested tomorrow, with the morning’s semi finals set to decide the final lineups.

For the full schedule and results – click here

The 2023 ICF Canoe Sprint and Paracanoe World Championships will be live streamed via the Planet Canoe Recast channel – click here

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