GLL Sport Foundation stars Joe Clarke and Kimberley Woods as well as Mallory Franklin and Adam Burgess have been selected by the British Olympic Association (BOA) to represent Team GB at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games - all four of these super talented British Canoeing athletes regularly train at Lee Valley White Water Centre and you may well have seen them in the water!
These Team GB stars consist of Rio 2016 Olympic gold medallist and four time World Champion Joe Clarke, 2023 World Champion Kimberley Woods, 2020 Tokyo Olympian Adam Burgess and 2023 C1 World Champion Mallory Franklin who made history in Tokyo.
Joe returns to Team GB after culminating his most successful ever season with double gold in front of a home crowd at the 2023 World Championships and will contest the men’s kayak single (K1), the event in which he won gold seven years ago. He will also be competing in the thrilling new Olympic event kayak cross, which is set to make its Games debut in Paris next year. Joe explained: “I can’t wait for Paris and I’m delighted to be selected for the Games. Obviously, I missed out on Tokyo and to go again eight years later is great. I’m a completely different athlete now… I really want to go out next year and do the double this time round!”
Tokyo Olympian and 2023 Kayak Cross World Champion Woods, who won eight medals during the 2023 season, including four at the home World Championships at Lee Valley White Water Centre, will be doubling up in Paris, contesting both the women’s kayak single (K1) and the kayak cross. Kimberley expressed her excitement saying: “I’m really excited to be a part of Team GB again for Paris 2024. Some people don’t get to go to one Olympics so I feel very fortunate to be going to my second Games. It’s not just the one class this time I’ll be racing, I have two events so twice the opportunity to win a medal. Being World Champion and world number one has never happened to me before. I really want to build on that leading into Paris."
Team GB’s most successful canoeist Mallory Franklin, who made history in Tokyo and has continued to shine ever since on the international stage, will be back to compete in the women’s canoe single (C1) and women’s kayak cross. Mallory said: “I’m delighted to be selected to TeamGB for the second time. I knew I was in a strong position coming into the year. To be going again in C1 as World Champion and the opportunity to win another medal is really exciting. Medaling in every World Championships since Tokyo gives me some added confidence ahead of Paris. I really want to enjoy the experience. It will be a different experience to Tokyo with the crowd and atmosphere. I will embrace it.”
Completing the team will be Tokyo 2020 finalist and C1 team world silver medallist Burgess who is returning for his second consecutive Games in the men’s canoe single (C1) competed in his first Olympic Games in Tokyo, where he just missed out on a medal, finishing just 0.16 seconds away in fourth place. Adam is on a mission and also commented saying “I’m so excited to be racing in Paris next year. It’s one thing making it to the Olympics once, but to be a two-time Olympian is fantastic.”
We wish these stars all the best and will continue to support them on their road to Paris 2024. If you want to take your first steps into the water, why not book a Paddelsport course at Lee Valley White Water Centre.