Lismore teen to world kayak titles
AFTER only two years in the sport, Lismore kayaking sensation Joshua Lee is off to compete in the World Championships in Bosnia.
In July Joshua, 15, will join the other members of the Australian U18 Kayak team at the International Canoe Federation Junior and U23 Wildwater Canoeing World Championships.
"Following outstanding competition at the National Wild Water/Down River Championships held in Tasmania in January 2019, I was successful in being selected to represent my country in the World Wild Water Championships, being held in Bosnia and Herzegovina in July 2019,” he said.
"I am one of only four U18 Men who have been selected for the Junior Wild Water / Down River Kayaking Team.”
The Kadina High School Year 10 student said he took up the gruelling sport after an accident saw him switch from gymnastics to the kayak.
"My formal training involves at least three times a week on water, dad is my coach,” he said.
"I paddle the Wilson River, twice most Sundays, go to the gym, see an exercise physiologist and plan to study this at university.”
He said there's no local running water, rapids, so he has to travel extensive distances to train.
"I have to go to Penrith (Sydney) or to Tasmania to train,” he said.
"Tasmania's great, I raced at the Upper Mersey Whitewater Course in Tasmania in January.”
He said being part of the North Coast Academy of Sport has been invaluable.
Joshua said while he competes across a number of kayak events including sprint, marathon, slalom, white water, down river, wild water in K1, K2, C1 and C2 classes, he love the speedy rapid events.
"I love the wild water racing, going down rapids as fast you can,” he said.
"It's exciting to pick your line through the rapids and stick to it.”
Joshua said in between school and training, he has a part-time job to assist his family with expenses associated with the sport.
"My ultimate goal is to represent Australia in either the Youth Olympics, or the 2020 or 2024 Olympic Games,” he said.