While the sport of canoe slalom does not receive the mainstream attention that others do, it possesses much of the same drama and excitement. Deep Creek 2014, the 2014 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships, brought that excitement to the United States, as the sport's biggest event had come to the United States for just the second time to that point in its history.
During this riveting competition, there were a total of nine countries that received medals over the course of the ten events that made up the World Championships. Here, we will relive Deep Creek 2014 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships, as well as some of the history of the event and what made this competition as special as it was.
ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships History
The first Canoe Slalom World Championships event was held in 1949, with the maiden voyage being held in Switzerland. At that point, the event was held every two years, with odd numbered years having the honor of holding the competition. Organized by the International Canoe Federation, or ICF, the competition remained that way until 2002, when it was held in an even numbered year after being cancelled in 2001 after the September 11 terrorist attacks dissuaded organizers from holding the event in its original site of Tennessee.
Since that 2002 competition, the event has been held annually, with the exception of years where the summer Olympics is set to take place, as the athletes involved in this competition also have Olympic medals to compete for. The 2014 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships was no exception, as it was held without any issues. Among the countries that this marquee tournament has taken place in are the likes of the United States, Brazil, and many countries throughout Europe and the rest of the world, with the constantly changing host site making the competition more interesting each year.
Types Of Events
There were 10 events that were run as a part of Deep Creek 2014, with nine of those events counting for medals. Unfortunately, one of the events in the Deep Creek program was not counted as a medal event, with the women's C1 team competition being disqualified. That was the case due to the lack of teams participating in that event. Normally six countries are required to compete in an event for it to be considered a valid world championship medal event, a number that was not reached for that race. Every other race in the program, however, was run for medals as scheduled.
The events contested during Deep Creek 2014 included the C1 individual races for men and women, which are one-person canoe races. In the C1 team events, racers in single canoes were involved in teams, with the best performance by one team winning the gold, except in the case of the C1 women's race, which did not count toward a medal. There were also the C2 races, which involve two-person canoes, and are contested in both pairs and team competition, with six competitors taking part in those races for each team. Elsewhere, there were the K1 individual and team events, which put one-person kayaks against one another either in a team format or individually.
Deep Creek 2014 Results
The results of Deep Creek 2014 races saw individuals or teams from nine different countries claim medals, even with one of the ten competitive races being held without medals on the line due to the lack of required federations to participate in it. In the men's C1 event, the United States won their only medal of the competition, which was a gold medal on the back of Fabian Lefevre. The C1 team competition saw Slovakia hold on for a gold over the likes of the Czech Republic and Slovenia.
Elsewhere in men's medal events, the C2 single boat for competition, as Slovenia held off France and Slovakia for the victory. In the C2 team competition, France managed to get itself on top indeed, as they defeated the rest of the field en route to a gold. France continued their run of dominance in the kayak side of the competition, with the K1 and K1 team events both going to members of the French delegation as well.
On the women's side Australian Jessica Fox took gold in both the women's C1 and K1 events, as the rest of the field does not appear to want her involved. In both of those races, Fox held off a competitior from Great Britain to claim the top spot, which was very impressive work on her part. In the women's K1 team race, France had what it took to claim yet another gold, their fourth of this competition. While the race was not worth a medal due to the attendance issues surrounding the race, the C1 team event did go on even without the medals, with the Czech Republic coming out on top.
Deep Creek 2014 Medal Counts
When it comes to the medal count of the whitewater Slalom World Championships, the amount of winning done by each country was pretty evenly split, with seven of the nine countries that won a medal in the event winning more than one medal. France led the pack thanks to their great performances in the men's canoe and kayak races, as the French amassed eight medals over the course of Deep Creek 2014. That was nearly one third of the 27 total medals that were awarded over the course of the entire competition.
Elsewhere, Australia won two medals on the strength of Jessica Fox's two golds, while Slovakia won four medals and Slovenia won three. The United States won just one gold medal for the entirety of this competition, with Australia doubling up the American medal total for the duration of this competition. Finally, Czech Republic and England, took home three medals apiece, with Austria and Germany winning one and two medals, respectively.
Why Deep Creek?
Deep Creek was perhaps a bit of a surprise when it was chosen to host the 2014 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships, due to its relative obscurity when compared to the other countries and cities that were up for grabs. The decision to put this event in Deep Creek was officially made in 2011, with the organization even choosing Deep Creek over the likes of Vienna in Austria and Krakow in Poland. Given the competitive nature of these races, it is safe to say that the venue died not provide an unfair advantage to anyone, making Deep Creek a great place to compete.
As a thank you for the decision to choose Deep Creek, Maryland, Garrett County, which is the county in which Deep Creek resides, was awarded a million dollars in public funds to make the necessary upgrades to the facility to be up to par for all of the teams that were going to end up descending upon Deep Creek. With dozens of teams from around the world expected, these upgrades took the form of improved course design and upgraded accommodations to make sure that the athletes and their teams were in good hands.
One of the things that was taken care of with the funds that were allotted to the Deep Creek 2014 team was the course itself, and how water was introduced into the mix. Given that the intensity of the water has to be able to go from regular water to that of an Olympic caliber canoe and kayaking course at a moments notice, that was a key focus of the upgrade process.
At the end of the day, the Deep Creek 2014 event was one of the biggest international sporting events in the world that year, and was definitely the biggest to be held in the United States that year. With no major issues during the events, it is safe to say that the event went off without a hitch.
We appreciate you reading our guide to the Deep Creek 2014 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships, as we aim to relive what was a memorable time in not just American canoe slalom history, but the history of the sport as a whole. While this is not an official website, we do have a desire to go back through this great event to help as many fellow fans of the sport enjoy what it was as we can.