20:47,
Thursday,
22 April 2021.

New Zealand kayakers win Olympics appeal


By  Unsigned,   Wednesday, 26 March 2008

Kayaking officials in New Zealand who have been calling for a re-run of the 1,500 metre Beijing Olympics qualifying event have got their way.

Earlier this month, paddlers Troy Burbridge and Erin Taylor were beaten by Australians Tony Schumacher and Alana Nicholls.

But the New Zealand pair claimed that clumps of weeds in the water at the Sydney International Regatta Centre hampered their chances.

At the time, kayaking officials said that because the Australians also had to cope with weeds in the water, the contest was effectively fair on everybody.

But a fortnight of protests, pleas and counter-appeals resulted in the International Canoe Federation ruling last Friday that the qualifying races could be repeated.

The federation's jury declared that the races must be rerun by May 18th at the latest.

Speaking on the issue just after the controversial event, New Zealand kayaking manager Grant Restall said that although outdoor sports contain an element of risk and surprise, events as important as Olympic qualifications must be fair.