Less than seven days after falling narrowly short of victory in the opening event of the ICF Slalom World Cup in Prague, Jess Fox went one better to steal victory in the Poland canoe one final over the weekend and claim the overall rankings lead of the five-event series.
The current world C1 and K1 champion, Fox started favorite in last week’s Poland round only to fall the shortest of runner-ups in both events and leave with two silver medals and overall second in both rankings.
But determined to claim the only two crowns that eluded her all last season - on account of missing the final event - Jess arrived in Poland ready to assert her authority. And did just that in the canoe final. In fact, despite a number of gate touches, the 21-year-old finished a whopping three seconds clear of her nearest rival in an exceptionally quick raw time of 97.19 seconds before six seconds of penalties were added to make her accumulated time 103.19. Still quicker than powerful Brit Kimberley Woods.
It was a challenging course, And on my first session I didn’t feel good. But it got better throughout the week and I and Guess when the gates are placed for the race, everyone is in the same position and you just have to go for it.
The win solidified Jess’s position as the No.1 canoeist in the world ahead of the World Championships in September. But she still has three events of the World Cup series remaining starting with next week’s contest in Slovakia to etch her name on that trophy.
But as dominant as she was in the C1, Jess has some work to do in the K1 rankings if she’s to add that title to her growing list of achievements. Despite qualifying for the semi-finals seventh quickest, she ended up well short of her silver in Prague and now stands 10th overall with a 34-point deficit to Ricarda Funk of Germany. But time is on her side. And she’ll have this week to learn the Slovakian course as she hatches her redemption.