Inside the 2019 ICF Freestyle Worlds – #7 Juniors Showdown, Men’s & Women Quarters
by Kathy Holcombe
Everyday during the 2019 ICF World Freestyle Championships, Kathy & Peter Holcombe are sending us their views on what is going on in Sort (Spain) where the worlds are taking place this year. Follow along each day as they recap what they see from the river bank.
And then there were twenty… As we close in on the final rounds of the world championships, the tricks get bigger and the pressure intensifies. Today the junior class had their moment in the spotlight and I have to say the future is bright in the sport of freestyle kayaking. In the junior women’s event, Ottilie Robinson-Shaw, the reigning world champion was the one to beat, but was untouchable after scoring a 537 points on her first ride. The three USA junior women battled it out to the bitter end with a 40 point spread between the three competitors. Olivia McGinnis ended up with the silver and Katie Fankhouser ended up in third only 3.33 points behind her teammate.
The junior men’s event was just as intense with Mason Hargrove from the USA throwing down 960 points in his first ride. For the rest of the comp it seemed like Masons’ score was going to take the title until the last competitor, Dally Kellogg from team USA, threw down a massive ride. The crowd was on the edge of their seat as the judges tallied the score. Dally ended up in second place followed by Jack Newland from Australia.
Today the men and women cut their ranks from twenty to ten as they prepare for their final day of competition tomorrow. In the men’s division, Joaquin Fontane Maso from Spain in 1st, Dane Jackson from the USA in 2nd, and Tom Dolle from France in third. The women’s competition was just as fierce with Sofia Tula form Poland in the lead followed by Anne Huebner from Germany and Marlene Devillez from France. In the morning both divisions will cut their ranks in half again before the final showdown tomorrow night where the world champion will claim their title.