Ken Wallace is a three-time Olympic medallist, and multiple-times world champion.Olympic canoeing gold medalist Ken Wallace has pulled out of Australia’s World Cup and world championship teams but remains determined to compete in a fourth Olympic Games.
The triple Olympian made the decision to focus on the 2019 Olympic qualifying year in preparation for the games in Tokyo in two years time, after a bout of injuries earlier in the season.
“Obviously this was not an easy decision to make. Since 1999, I have been on the Australian national team every year except for one, 2004,” he said in a statement on Tuesday.
“Ultimately, the goal is Tokyo 2020 and this is the best time to take a bit of a break and to come back refreshed, fitter and stronger for next season, which is only a few months away.”
Wallace was selected in this year’s World Cup and world championship squad after selection trials in February but had to withdraw from nationals in March, struggling with infection leading into the regatta.
The 34-year-old Queenslander said although disappointing, the decision had created an opportunity to spend “some much-needed quality time” with his family.
“I believe the decision to stay at home this winter instead of the endless summers that I have been having is the best decision,” Waqllace said.
“I will use this time to recharge the batteries.”
The veteran won Olympic gold in 2008 in the K1 500 in Beijing, narrowly missed a medal in 2012 in London and then won bronze with Lachlan Tame in the K2 1000 last year in Rio.
Wallace also sat out the 2017 national championships with a back injury.
Australian Associated Press