Royal opening of the ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships in Denmark

Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark, who is also IOC member, got very near to the canoe sport when he Friday afternoon participated in the opening of the ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships on Lake Bagsvaerd.

The Crown Prince attended the start of the men’s U23 K1 race after which he met Denmark’s two most important athletes within kayaking; Henriette Engel and René Holten Poulsen.

As an active sportsman and newly having completed an Ironman race, the Crown Prince was interested in the tactic and the boats and watched with great involvement the spectacular portages where the paddlers draw the kayaks on land to run a certain distance and put them back onto the water.

Later on, he visited the mayors Karin Søjberg Holst, Gladsaxe and Søren P. Rasmussen, Lyngby-Taarbæk as well as CEO of Sport Event Denmark Lars Lundov. The Crown Prince also visited the spectator area where he tasted organic apple juice and was introduced to the theme of these world championships, i.e. sustainability.

Here, Peter Engel , member of the board and project manager, from the Danish Canoe Federation told about the efforts to arrange an international ISO-certified green event based on, amongst other things, sorting of waste, recycling, sustainable means of transport and other environmental initiatives.

After this, the Crown Prince continued his tour on the water, where he from a boat could attend the turns and the paddlers’ tactics before the finishing sprint for the World Champion title after six rounds and 25.8 kilometres on the water.

Ashore again, the Crown Prince ended his visit talking to the Danish U23 paddlers, Martin Larsen and Orion Pilo and awarding medals to the three medal winners, two South Africans and a Norwegian.

– In every aspect it was a tremendous day for the canoe sport and for our WCH event. We were very happy that the Crown Prince attended the opening and showed his interest for our sport. It is a major recognition of the canoe sport, which not least our athletes can bring with them, said chairman of the Danish Canoe Federation, Ole Tikjøb.

For the two mayors, it was a good occasion to show and tell about Denmark’s Rowing stadium at Lake Bagsvaerd, which is jointly owned by the two municipalities.

The theme of sustainability and the efforts to create green sport events is supported by Sport Event Denmark and the IOC.

– The sustainable Canoe Marathon World Championships have now begun and we are looking forward to harvesting the experiences from these championships to be used for future events. With the royal visit, we have also been able to tell about the numerous green initiatives. Likewise, the Crown Prince had the opportunity to see the carrying through of the event and the sport competitions, said Lars Lundov, CEO, Sport Event Denmark.

The WCH is arranged in cooperation between the Danish Canoe Federation, the International Canoe Federation (ICF), Gladsaxe and Lyngby-Taarbæk municipalities, Sport Event Denmark and Wonderful Copenhagen. The Branding Denmark Fund contributes to the PR and public exposure of the ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships.