Pan Am gold for Balmy Beach paddlers

Balmy Beach para athlete Erica Scarff won two medals at the Pan American Championships in Ecuador this fall. PHOTO: Contributed

Members of the Balmy Beach Canoe Club took multiple medals home from the Pan American Championships in Ecuador.

Palmer Lumb, 18, won gold medals in the four-man, 1,000-metre kayak event and solo 200-metre sprint and bronze medals in the two-man, 200-metre kayak sprint and solo 500-metre sprint.

“It was pretty amazing. It was my first time going to South America,” said Lumb, taking a break from training camp in Mississauga during his off-season. “Ultimately, winning an international event is kind of my biggest achievement,” he added, noting it was the “highlight of my career so far.”

The three-day Pan American Canoe Federation event took place from Oct. 13 to 15.

Lumb got help in the four-person event from teammate and fellow Balmy Beach member Cameron Low, who also won bronze in the junior men’s 1,000-metre two-man race.

Meantime, Erica Scarff, a Balmy Beach para athlete, won two medals: gold in VL3 200 metre canoe race and silver in the KL3 200-metre kayak sprint.

“There were only two people in our category,” said Scarff. “That’s why I’m not the proudest of it,” she said of her performance.

What stands out most in her mind was the South American backdrop. “It was just really cool to go there and train in Ecuador where the landscape and everything was so beautiful,” she said.

Lumb is now looking ahead to February, when he will head to Florida for three months of training. The Team Canada Selection Trials follow in April.

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