Champion Kayaker Sam Keeps Paddling
It was a pleasure to catch up with Sam Kirschstein Smith again. From previous editions of Peppard News you will know how proud we are to have such a talented young sportsman in our village.
Sam turned 18 in the summer, a month before competing in Szeged, Hungary in the World Kayaking Championships. He competed in K2 and K4 1,000 metre races in front of crowds of around 600. He reached the A Finals in both events. He and his fellow paddler Ed Haws are now eighth fastest in the world in K2 and in K4 the team are sixth fastest in the world! They also broke the GB Junior 1000 metre K4 record by three seconds with a time of 2:58 minutes. The temperature in Szeged was 31° and the team spent a week training and acclimatising beforehand. Sam is rightly proud of his own and his team’s achievements.
So what next? He is looking to compete in the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2020 and will continue to paddle at Bisham and Dorney Lake. His commitment to his sport is really impressive while also keeping on top of his academic work.