Luis Carlos Cardoso da Silva finds Rio redemption

Brazilian Para canoeist wins VL1 on Day 1 of World Championships 24 Aug 2017
a Para caoneist celebrates by raising his arms in the air

Brazil's Luis Cardoso da Silva is now a five-time world champion.

ⒸCezar Loureiro/MPIX/CPB

Brazil’s Luis Carlos Cardoso da Silva picked up his fifth Para canoe world title on the opening day of competition (23 August) at the 2017 International Canoe Federation (ICF) World Championships in Racice, Czech Republic.

Competition is being live streamed on the ICF’s website and runs until Sunday (27 August).

Cardoso da Silva won the non-Paralympic VL1 men’s 200 final, ahead of Hungary’s Robert Suba and Russia’s Pavel Gromov*. After finishing fourth in front of his home crowd in the KL1 at last year’s Rio Paralympics, the Brazilian’s victory on Wednesday was a boost as he will try for gold in that same event later in the Championships.

“The results last year inspired me to look at my mistakes, and to work on them, and correct them and try and to come here and try and win the gold medal,” he said.

“I’m very happy to have won this race, it’s four times in a row now. I was a little bit nervous at first, but I was very focussed.”

In other non-Paralympic events on Wednesday, Russia’s Larisa Volik* won the VL3 women’s final, ahead of Germany’s Anja Adler and Great Britain’s Lindsay Thorpe.

Australia’s Jocelyn Neumueller took out the VL1 women’s title, with Japanese duo Akiko Nakajima and Monika Seryu taking second and third.

It was the biggest win of Neumueller’s short paddling career, having come to Para canoe on the eve of the Rio 2016 Paralympics.

“It’s a great feeling, for a class that’s quite new and still evolving, I’m very happy with the way it turned out,” Neumueller said.

“I still am quite new, and for me it is still very much a learning experience, and improvement to come. It’s such an exciting time.”

The 2017 ICF Canoe Sprint and Para Canoe World Championships continue in Racice on Thursday (24 July). Complete results can be found on the ICF’s website.

*Editor’s note: The International Paralympic Committee suspended the Russian Paralympic Committee on 7 August for its inability to fulfil its IPC membership responsibilities and obligations, in particular its obligation to comply with the IPC Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Code (to which it is also a signatory). As a result of the suspension, Russian athletes cannot enter IPC sanctioned events or competitions, including the Paralympic Games. For further information please click here.