Slovenian Rowers Win the European Championship in Whitewater Rafting
The European Championship in Whitewater Rafting in Skopje proved successful for Slovenian kayakers. Nejc Žnidarčič, Anže Urankar and Vid Debeljak showed the best result in the team event on a whitewater sprint and brought the sixth medal to the national team.
Three Slovenian athletes, who a day before had taken all winning places in the individual event, were the main favourites to fight for victory in the sprint and in the team event. By the end of the competition, they won the first place, beating the team of France composed of Paul Graton, Damien Guyonnet and Paul Jean by 0.19 second. The Czech team won the third place (Richard Hala, Kamil Mružek and Adam Satke).
Immediately after the finish, due to a small mistake with a stopwatch, the victory was awarded to the Czech athletes, and the Slovenes were second. However, after the Slovene’s protest and reconsideration of readings, the judges found inaccuracy and returned the victory to the Slovenian kayakers.
“Once finished, we were delighted with the victory and were already preparing for the medals. Then the judges approached us and informed that we were the second. We did not really row well, and I told the guys that we could have really been second. However, the result of the Czech kayakers, which in total exceeded the individual figure made separately by each team member, was suspicious. We protested and it turned out that the error occurred when calculating time. As a result, each of us won two gold medals. It is very pleasing that we have won six medals by common efforts. This is a good indicator in front of responsible competitions, which are coming in the near future – the World Cup stages and the World Championship,” said Nejc Žnidarčič.
The Slovene kayakers will face the next important starts in June, when the stages of the World Cup will be held in Switzerland and Germany. The climax of the season will come in the end of September this year, when Pau (France) hosts the World Championship in Whitewater Rafting.