RECAP: 2013 Slalom World Cup 2
(Dana Mann at 2013 U.S. Team Trials)
Dana Mann (Washington, D.C.) finished 14th in women’s K-1 in her first World Cup of the season and first as a member of Team USA. The Slovakia-born paddler turned in a semifinal run time of 118.17, which was +6.86 seconds behind the round’s first place finisher. She incurred one gate touch penalty, which was enough to knock her out of the Top 10 and a place in the Final.
WHAT: 2013 ICF Slalom World Cup No. 2
WHERE: Augsburg, Germany
WHEN: June 28-30
WHO: U.S. Senior National Team
Click HERE for live results.
On Saturday, Casey Eichfeld (Drums, Pa.), Fabien Lefevre (Bethesda, Md.) and Zach Lokken (Durango, Colo.) teamed up to finish 7th in the C-1 Team event. Lefevre then joined Michal Smolen (Gastonia, N.C.) and Richard Powell (Parkesburg, Penn.) to place 10th in the K-1 Team event.
All U.S. paddlers will now head to La Seu D’Urgell, Spain for 2013 Slalom World Cup No. 3.
Two-time Olympian Casey Eichfeld (Drums, Pa.) led the way for Team USA on Day 2 of the 2013 Slalom World Cup No. 2. He finished 11th in the men’s C-1 with a penalty-free semifinal time of 110.04, which was +5.16 seconds behind the round’s first place finisher and +0.17 seconds out of a spot in the Top 10 and Final.
“Today my C-1 was much better,” Eichfeld said. “I put down a strong run without touches. I had some slow areas, which unfortunately put me in 11th - 0.17 seconds out of finals. All is well and I'm happy to have raced pretty well at such a well attended World Cup!”
Fabien Lefevre (Bethesda, Md.) finished 22nd in men’s C-1 and 14th in K-1 Saturday. The two-time Olympic medalist for France finished with a penalty-free C-1 semifinal time of 114.40 and a K-1 time of 102.87, which was +5.10 seconds behind the round’s first place finisher. He incurred one gate touch penalty to knock him out of the Top 10 and a spot in the K-1 Final.
Michal Smolen (Gastonia, N.C.) finished 20th in men’s K-1 with a penalty-free semifinal run of 103.59.
In Women’s C-1, Micki Reeves (Denver, Colo.) and Colleen Hickey (Okawville, Ill.) finished 15th and 17th, respectively. Reeves finished with a penalty-free semifinal run of 161.18, which was +32.81 seconds behind the round’s first place finisher. Hickey’s time of 180.13 included 12 seconds of penalty time.
Six U.S. paddlers rank among the Top 20 through Day 1 of the 2013 Slalom World Cup No. 2 – seven if you count Fabien Lefevre (Bethesda, Md.) the kayaker and Lefevre the canoeist. One week after winning Bronze in kayak, the two-time Olympic medalist for France ranks 17th in K-1 and 18th in C-1 through heats, advancing to Saturday’s semifinals in each.
Michal Smolen (Gastonia, N.C.) topped Lefevre Friday with a 16th place rank in K-1 and advances to Saturday’s semifinal. Smolen’s 2nd run time 103.06 was +4.84 seconds behind the first place finisher through heats. Lefevre’s 1st run time 103.46 included one gate touch penalty. Beijing Olympian Richard Powell (Parkesburg, Penn.) placed 53rd with a time of 109.17 and will not advance.
In men’s C-1, Lefevre’s 2nd run time of 110.66 was +7.21 seconds behind the first place finisher through heats. Two-time Olympian Casey Eichfeld (Drums, Pa.) finished 20th with a 2nd run time of 113.25, including four seconds of penalty time to reach Saturday’s semifinal. Zach Lokken (Durango, Colo.) placed 33rd with a 2nd run time of 114.84 and will not advance.
In women’s K-1, Dana Mann (Washington, D.C.) qualified for Sunday’s semifinal with a 20th place finish. Her 2nd run time of 118.15 was +7.27 seconds behind the first place finisher through heats. Ashley Nee (Bethesda, Md.) placed 41st with a 2nd run time of 127.34, including one gate touch penalty, and will not advance.
Competing in their first World Cup of the season, women’s canoeists Micki Reeves (Denver, Colo.) and Colleen Hickey (Okawville, Ill.) finished 16th and 17th, respectively, to qualify for Saturday’s semifinal. Reeves’s first run time of 160.90 was +31.89 seconds behind the first place finisher through heats. Hickey’s 2nd run time of 163.90 included six penalty seconds.
The men’s C-2 duo of Eichfled and Devin McEwan (Salisbury, Conn.) placed 29th with a 2nd run ime of 129.72 and will not advance.
“It was great to have Danka and two our Women’s C1s get their World Cup season off to a positive start and see our top contenders in Men’s kayak and C1 advance to the semi-finals,” said USA Canoe/Kayak CEO Joe Jacobi. “But on a day that saw all heats for all categories squeezed into a very long single day of racing, kudos to our National Slalom Coaches, Coach [Silvan] Poberaj and Coach [Rafal] Smolen, for their support of our athletes today.”
New U.S. kayaker Dana Mann (Washington, D.C.) is studying GRE vocabulary to improve her English while contemplating entering graduate school to earn her second Master’s degree. A native of Bratislava, Slovakia, she recently learned the word “vituperative”, which means “bitter and abusive”.
While she doesn’t let anyone act that way towards her, there are two people in her life that are encouraged to provide constructive criticism – her husband, U.S. kayaker Scott Mann, and U.S. Coach Silvan Poberaj.
“Since we got married, I moved here and we train together,” Dana Mann said. “We work out together and we’re in the same training group. And he’s really good at pushing me and telling me about my mistakes and I can take it from him really well. He knows me the best from all of the coaches.”
Poberaj coaches the U.S. team as well as Mann’s club at the Potomac Whitewater Racing Center.
“I really like working out with Silvan Poberaj, who is my coach right now,” said Dana Mann. “Having him there twice a day really helps me. It’s motivating that even when it’s raining and snowing, he’s always there.”
Dana Mann will join the rest of Team USA this weekend at World Cup No. 2 in Augsburg, Germany. Her husband, a former National Team Member, finished 4th at the 2013 U.S. Team Trials and will not be competing at the World Cups this year.
“I feel very happy and relaxed, especially when I can train with my husband,” Dana Mann said. “Then I race really well when he’s around. Hopefully, I can race when he’s not around as well.”
Much of the 2013 U.S. Senior Team has already competed in one World Cup this season. Fabien Lefevre (Bethesda, Md.) won the Bronze medal in men’s kayak last weekend in Cardiff, UK. The two-time Olympic medalist for France also finished 14th in single canoe.
Click HERE for a full recap of the Cardiff World Cup.
Michal Smolen (Gastonia, N.C.) placed 14th in men’s kayak, while canoeists Zach Lokken (Durango, Colo.) and two-time Olympian Casey Eichfeld (Drums, Pa.) also recorded top 20 finishes.
Ashley Nee (Bethesda, Md.) and 2008 Olympian Richard Powell (Parkesburg, Penn.) will look to reach the semifinals in women’s and men’s kayak, respectively, after getting knocked out in the heats at World Cup No. 1.
Women’s canoeists Colleen Hickey (Okawville, Ill.) and Micki Reeves (Denver, Colo.).will compete in their first international events of the 2013 season this weekend.
“I am very excited to race this week,” Mann said. “It is going to be my very first international race for the US team. I trained here last week as well, I feel good on the water. The goal is always the same-to have a good run I can be happy with.”
Headquartered in Oklahoma City, USA Canoe/Kayak is a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee and the International Canoe Federation. It governs the Olympic disciplines of Flatwater Sprint, Whitewater Slalom, the Paralympic discipline of Paracanoe and sanctions Freestyle, Marathon, Outrigger, Wildwater, Stand Up Paddle Board, Kayak Polo, Dragon Boat and Canoe Sailing in the United States. For more information about USA Canoe/Kayak, please visit us on the web at www.usack.org, on Twitter at @usacanoekayak and Like us on Facebook at facebook.com/USACanoeKayak.