Kiwi kayaker Jones into World Cup semifinal

IAN ANDERSON
Last updated 10:33 21/06/2014
luuka
WARWICK SMITH/Fairfax NZ

STRONG: Luuka Jones competing in last year's New Zealand Open Oceania Canoe Slalom Championships.

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The strong early season form shown by Kiwi kayaker Luuka Jones continued in Prague overnight.

Jones made her third consecutive semifinal at the latest round of the white water slalom World Cup series. The 25-year-old Tauranga paddler qualified in 22nd in the K1 division, despite touching gates in both her qualifying runs.

Her first-round run of 93.57secs, with one two-second penalty, saw her make the the top-30 semifinals. Last week she recorded her best result in Slovenia, when she made the top-10 final for the first time at a World Cup.

Her fellow Olympian and Bay of Plenty paddler Mike Dawson couldn't repeat his top form however, missing the 13th gate in his second run to drop to 55th overall and shy of the top 40 paddlers who qualified for the semifinal.

Of the other Kiwis in action, Jane Nicholas was 50th in the K1 women's race, with her sister Ella - representing Cook Islands - 55th, while Finn Butcher was 59th. Another promising junior Callum Gilbert was 61st in the K1 men's ranks.

Jane Nicholas qualified for the C1 semifinals in 18th spot, while Ben Gibb and Patrick Washer were 50th and 55th respectively in the C1 men.

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