Another final for Tauranga kayaker

Tauranga kayaker Luuka Jones competing in C1. Photo: Jamie Troughton/Dscribe Media.

Luuka Jones has continued her remarkable C1 rise, finishing seventh at the latest round of the ICF canoe slalom World Cup in Italy.

The Rio Olympic K1 silver medalist's decision to race both disciplines is already bearing fruit, making her second final in as many rounds and stringing together three solid runs over two days.

Her best run was arguably her semi-final, when she qualified fourth, just 2.93secs behind leader Nadine Weratschnig, in a time of 117.97secs which included a 2sec penalty touch.

She picked up two more touches in the final to finish 22.41secs behind runaway winner, Australian Jess Fox.

“I was really happy with my semi but I went a bit too hard in the final and wasn't using the water very well,” says Jones.

It's another valuable lesson for her as she eyes both C1 and K1 at the Tokyo Olympics and she has another chance of improving in tonight's K1 semi-finals.

“Having already paddled the course twice is an advantage for sure and I'm looking forward to the K1, as paddling it with two blades will be easier in a lot of places!”

Fox brought up her third consecutive C1 World Cup title of 2017 in stunning fashion, posting a time of 100.83 to finish well ahead of Wolffhardt on 111.57, with Czech Tereza Fiserova third.

Czech Vit Prindis also added his third title of the year, winning the K1 men's final, with his 87.15 time just enough to edge out Michal Smolen (United States) on 87.44.  Both paddlers competed in New Zealand last summer at the inaugural Whitewater XL.

Kiwi Mike Dawson had a few issues in his semi-final, finishing 33rd, as a number of top paddlers failed to fire on the tough Ivrea course.

Dawson will also have another chance at redemption tonight, lining up in the extreme slalom heats alongside fellow Kiwi Finn Butcher, with Dawson having won a gold and bronze in his two World Cup outings in that discipline so far this season.



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The Sun going down over the water @ Sulphur Point. Photo: Casey Fredericks.

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