By Nina Jelenc | ECA

On the third competition day of the 2017 ECA Junior&U23 Canoe Sprint European Championships which takes place in Serbian capital Belgrade the first medals have been awarded to the best athletes in the 1000 metres finals. Today we saw fourteen A finals in the longest distance of this championship.

Belarus took the first gold medal of this weekend in men’s K4 U23 1000 metres final. Aliaksei Misiuchenka, Yury Tkachou, Kiryl Nikitsinn and Ilya Fedarenka were 0.328 seconds faster than Hungarian K4 (Gacsal, Gal, Doba, Ceiner) and almost three seconds faster than Russians Sergeev, Shikunov, Petajkin and Rutskii. Belorussian U23 K4 was the best also last year at the Junior&U23 World Championships in Minsk, but it is only Ilya Fedarenka who remained from that crew.

In men’s U23 K1 final Oleh Kukharyk (UKR), 2015 K1M Junior 1000 metres silver medallist from the European Championships, beat Artuur Peters, 2016 K1M U23 World Champion, for only 0.064 seconds. Vladislav Blintcov (RUS) crossed the finish line in third place.

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Carlo Tacchini picked up a gold medal for Italy in men’s C1 U23 final. Pavlo Altukhov (UKR) was second and Vadim Korobov (LTU) third. In women’s U23 K1 final Hungarian- born British sprinter Rebeka Simon showed the best performance to be crowned European Champion. Sara Mihalik (HUN) was second and Bolette Nyvang (DEN) third.

Russian athletes were the best in men’s as well as women’s K2 U23 1000 metres final. Arina Anoshkina and Varvara Baranova were closely followed by Polish duo Justyna Iskrzycka and Anna Pulawska and Hungarians Fruzsina Racsko and Eszter Malcsiner. In men’s K2 event Oleg Siniavin and Maxim Spesivtsev celebrated a win ahead of Matyas Koleszar and Viktor Nemeth (HUN), while Italians Luca Beccaro and Tommaso Freschi finished the final race in third place.

In C2M U23 1000 metres final defending champions Yurii Vandiuk and Andrii Rybachok (UKR) had to congratulate two crews who finished the race ahead of them. Chirila Catalin and Constantin Diba (ROU) won the European Champion title and Moldavian duo Ilie Sprincean and Oleg Nuta once again won silver medal as they finished second also last year in Plovdiv.

In junior K1M category Rasmus Knudsen (DEN) defended his title from the European Championships in 2016, Adam Varga (HUN) finished second and Bojan Zdelar (SRB) third. Ryhor Maisiuk (BLR) succeeded Alexander Tutaev from Russia, who was champion last year, on top of the C1M junior 1000 metres final. Ian Kavaliauskas (RUS) was second and Roberts Lagzdins (LAT) third. 2016 K1W Junior European Champion Sofie Kinclova (CZE) finished the race in second place this time. It was Emese Kohalmi from Hungary who reached the top position and Alina Svita (BLR) was third.

Vojtech Prochazka, Jan Vorel, Vilem Kukacka and Ondrej Masek from Czech Republic won the men’s K4 final. A little less than a second after them Belorussian K4 (Belaus, Niavolin, Ramanau, Novak) crossed the finish line and Bulgarians Stefanov, Emanuilov, Dimitrov and Vulchov picked up bronze medal.

In the remaining three finals of the day Hungary took all the European Champion titles. Patrik Eros and Benedek Kos were the fastest in men’s K2 Junior final, Adam Slihoczki and Attila Szoke in C2 final and Karina Biben – Olga Bako in women’s K2 final. Sanko and Sukhanosau (BLR) won silver and Alsbaek – Schulett-Jensen (DEN) bronze in K2 junior men’s final, Hatalski –Patapenka (BLR) and Nemov – Romanov (RUS) reached the podium in C2 Junior event, while Sobiskova – Galadova (CZE) and Sauchuk – Shmuksta (BLR) joined Hungarian duo on the podium in women’s K2 Junior 1000 metres final.

On Sunday athletes will first compete in 500 metres events and the championships will close with 200 metres finals.

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