Slalom Development News

Girls Get Active

Wednesday May 23rd was the Sport NSW Girls Get Active day, which meant program instructors Ros Lawrence, Brodie Crawford, Callan Grady and Mitch Gawthorn taught basic kayaking skills to over 100 high school girls from the local area. They were able to get a snapshot of what kayaking is about and what the Program offers. It is important that we encourage girls to get involved in sports, especially kayaking as we have low numbers of girls in the Program and would love to have more.

WSAS Squad

Seven participants from the Program have been officially inducted into the Western Sydney Academy of Sport (WSAS) this month. Callan Grady, Jessica Wilson, Alex Broome, Sophie Wilson, Jess Libreri, Martin Boer-Cueva and Liam Gallacher have all made the step to furthering their learning in the sport. The WSAS canoe slalom program was once a pillar in the slalom development scene but has been absent for the last few years. Thanks to the hard work of Ros, these athletes are lucky enough to get support in the form of sports psychology, funding for coaches, strength & conditioning and athlete education.

Behind the scenes staff

Most of you won’t have seen a couple of the Program staff members who volunteer their time to helping our participants become better paddlers. Nick Perry and Morgan Oliver run the strength and conditioning training sessions amongst other things twice weekly for a handful of our members. With their help, we’ve been able to elevate these kids who really want to improve to impressive performance levels this year.

Nick runs the strength and conditioning for the Australian Canoe Slalom Team and is always working hard on something every day, His enthusiasm for improvement and friendly personality are infectious.

Morgan volunteers his time as an intern with the Aussie Slalom Team as well and is one of the most well-liked people around the office. Both he and Nick have shown kids who are beginning to paddle big whitewater how to look after their bodies and avoid injuries in the future. This is really important when you learn to paddle on Penrith as the course is very advanced and injuries can happen if you’re not careful or proactive.

We can’t thank both of these guys enough for their help, they’re an invaluable part of the team and we hope they enjoy working with us as much as we enjoy their work.

State CHS Champs

The NSW Combined High Schools Canoeing championships were held recently on the Mann River, near Glenn Innes, NSW. Eight of the Program’s participants made the trip up North to do their best against other talented high school kayakers from around the state. Sophia Chen, Martin Boer-Cueva, Sophie Wilson, Dom Curtin, Jess Libreri, Archie Gill, Amalie White and Jessica Wilson all starred for the Program and were among the top paddlers in their disciplines. Highlights included:


– Sophie Wilson 1st place K1 & C1 slalom (U16)
– Jess Libreri 2nd K1 & C1 slalom (U16)
– Archie Gill 1st place C1 slalom, 3rd place K1 sprint (U16)
– Martin Boer-Cueva 1st K1 slalom open, 1st C2 mixed with Sophie Wilson
– Jessica Wilson 1st place K1 slalom open

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