Jiří Prskavec won gold in the men’s kayak slalom on Friday, with the silver medal going to Slovakia’s Jakub Grigar. Germany’s Hannes Aigner took bronze.
Jiri Prskavec🇨🇿 has won #gold in #Rowing – Men’s Kayak at #Tokyo2020 #UnitedByEmotion | #StrongerTogether | #Olympics
— #Tokyo2020 (@Tokyo2020) July 30, 2021
The two-time world champion in the individual event completed the kayak slalom course in 91.63, ahead of Slovakia’s Jakub Grigar (94.85) and Germany’s Hannes Aigner (97.11).
Prskavec would have been Olympic champion in Rio if he hadn’t had one penalty deduction but made no mistake this time, completing both his semi-final and final runs in the quickest times. Heading down the course last in the final, he held his nerve to come through to win, a massive 3.22s ahead of second-placed Grigar.
The Slovakian, who came fifth in Rio, won the first-ever Olympic medal in kayak slalom for his nation, continuing his good form this year having won the last World Cup before the Games.
Germany’s experienced paddler Hannes Aigner was a bronze medallist at London 2012, and fourth in Rio, so he’ll be pleased to be back on the podium.
Prskavec won a bronze medal in the K1 event at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro and gold at the K1 event at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
He won nine medals at the ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships with four golds (K1: 2015, 2019; K1 team: 2015, 2017), four silvers (K1: 2013, 2018; K1 team: 2014, 2019) and a bronze (K1 team: 2018). He also won ten gold, one silver and three bronze medals at the European Championships.
Prskavec won the overall World Cup title in the K1 class in 2018 and 2019.
His father Jiří is a former slalom canoeist and a medalist from World and European Championships.