Liam Heath preparing to defend his European Championship title
Canoe Sprint

Liam Heath preparing to defend his European Championship title

07 July 2017 / 11:25

Olympic gold medallist Liam Heath will be hoping to defend his European K1 200m title after being selected by Great Britain for the European and World Championships.

The paddler, who achieved glory at the Rio 2016 Olympics Games, is hoping to continue his fine year in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, after scooping a gold medal at World Cup 2 in Szeged and earning second place at World Cup 3 in Belgrade.

Heath cruised to victory in the primary selection regatta at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham meaning he’ll also take part in the World Championships in Racice, Czech Republic, in August.

Fellow Olympian Jess Walker will contest the women’s K1 200m at both Championships and will be looking to go one better at this year’s Europeans after finishing second in Moscow last year.

The three-time Olympian produced an impressive victory at the regatta last weekend and is confident of more success at both competitions.

Fresh from her silver medal at the Marathon European Championships in Portugal, Lani Belcher will be competing in the K1 5000m and has previous success in this category, winning silver in Milan two years ago at the Worlds.

Angela Hannah, Lani’s K2 500m partner in Rio, will be linking up with Hannah Brown at both international competitions, competing in the K2 200m and K2 500m.

There is a first senior call-up for Magnus Gregory, coached by Tom Daniels at Longridge CC in the K1 1000m and K1 5000m at the World Championships. Gregory claimed a silver medal in the Junior World Championships last year in the K1 1000m, and a European Junior title in the K2 1000m.

Heather Williams, Canoe Sprint performance manager, said: “Congratulations to all the athletes who have earned selection to the team, we have a real mix of experience and new blood eager to make its mark on the international senior stage, which is a great place to be in year one of a new Olympic cycle.

“The World Championships at the end of August is our primary target for the year, however we are also really looking forward to bench marking ourselves against the best in Europe next week.”

Sportsbeat 2017

Join the Team GB Club today, check it out right here