Canoeing: Pressure on for David Florence’s Rio bid

David Florence at Lee Valley. Pic: Getty
David Florence at Lee Valley. Pic: Getty
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Edinburgh canoeist David Florence admits he is under as much pressure going into this weekend’s Olympic Trials as he was when he struck gold at last month’s World Championships in London.

The 33-year-old will be competing on the same Lee Valley course where he claimed his third world title in the C1 slalom, but English bronze medallist Ryan Westley is running him close for the single spot in Britain’s Olympic team. Despite his silver medals from Beijing 2008 and London 2012, Florence needs to win one of the three selection races on Saturday, Sunday or Monday to guarantee his place in Rio next summer.

“That’s not a given,” he warned. “A home World Championships was a big thing, but there’s probably a similar amount of pressure on these races. Getting to Rio has been so important to me over the last few years, so there’s a lot riding on this weekend.

Florence and Rich Hounslow are also well-placed to qualify in the C2 doubles following their fifth place finish at the Worlds.