300 Athletes representing 27 Nations began competition today at the ICF U23 and Junior Whitewater Canoe Slalom World Championships in Wausau, WI. The Wausau Whitewater Board of Directors and crew of Volunteers have been hard at work preparing for the first World Championships to return home since 1994. The opening ceremonies kicked off the official start of the race week yesterday evening with a parade of the Teams followed by presentations of Native American Pow Wow Dancing and a Choir of South African Singers.

But this morning the qualification runs began and everyone was looking to not only earn their spot in the semis but take the top of the leaderboard for a mental edge moving into the upcoming weekend. After first runs, USA’s Michal Smolen landed in sixth place in the U23 K1 Mens Class, having touched two gates which put bumped him from second. But he would clean up his run on his second chance taking the lead by tenths of a second and finishing with a time of 102.05. Just behind him finished slovakia’s Halcin and Czech’s Prskavec with times of 102.26 and 102.28 respectively. Their semifinal runs will take place on Friday at Wausau Whitewater Park as each looks to earn a spot in the Finals.

Other results from todays U23 Qualifications include the womens C1 where USA’s Micki Reeves finished 7th behind Australia’s Laurence 1st, Germany’s Stoecklin 2nd, and The Czech Republics’ Jancova 3rd.

In the U23 Mens C2 Germany’s Behling and Becker finished at the top followed by Czech’s karlovsky and jane, and Kaspar and Sindler. The Juniors Race this Afternoon and more qualification runs take place tomorrow! Go Team USA!

For more Race Results or to watch live, visit http://123result.com/

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