A decision by the International Canoe Federation has given Hannah Macintosh (Senobe Canoe Club, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia) something that has eluded generations of female canoe athletes — an Olympic shot.
The ICF approved a race program for the 2020 Olympics with more gender equality. The proposal would see the women’s C-1 200 and the C-2 500 included in the Olympic program [*along with the women’s Slalom C1 event*].
The argument against including women’s canoe has been there were too few nations competing at the top level. But that has changed in recent times.
“When something isn’t an Olympic event, it really takes the attention away from it and there’s not enough funding,” MacIntosh, of the Senobe Aquatic Club, said Friday.
“So it just became a vicious cycle where there was no funding so nobody did it.”
“As a young athlete you always have a list of goals and for everyone going to the Olympics is the main goal,” she said. “That’s definitely been out of reach just because the sport we all fell in love with as young kids wasn’t included in the Olympic program.”
She said she wouldn’t have been discouraged because she loved her sport when it didn’t have the Olympics attached to it.
“There are other options before the Olympics, like world championships, that we have our eyes set on. But it definitely gives us way more opportunities in terms of funding and more international experience.”
Major 2015 Results for MacIntosh: 4th – 2015 U23 Canoe Sprint World Championships C2 200
In the photo attached, Hannah is on the right, going head to head with 2 of the fastest female canoeists on the planet – Laurence Vincent Lapointe and Taylor Potts.