29.04.2008 – Nick Bailey

Sydney University Sports Scholarship holder Robin Bell was an impressive winner in the C1 event at the Pan American Championships in Charlotte, USA on the weekend.

Bell mastered the challenging Charlotte course in the final of the event, with a clean second run time of 92.46 seconds to add to his first run score of 95.24, which included a two second penalty.

His total score of 187.20 saw him finish over six seconds ahead of the top American Ben Fraker.

The result will please Bell who had come to the USA seeking to work on his second run performance and to train and compete on the big water course.

Perfect conditions for the opening of the 2008 US Olympic Team Trials ensured a huge crowd was in attendance, and they were treated to an exciting competition at the official U.S. Olympic Committee’s Training venue, with thirteen Countries and 135 athletes taking part.

Beijing 2008 will be Bell’s last major event before retirement.

Having placed fourth in the C1 at the Athens Olympics, he won the 2005 World Championship, and was awarded a bronze medal in the 2007 world titles, before securing his place in the Beijing Olympic team by winning the C1 class events at the national selection trials in March.

Bell is hoping to win only Australia’s second ever canoe/kayak Olympic medal, after Daniella Woodward’s silver medal in the K1 at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona.