Frome Lions have pledged to sponsor a young Frome canoeist, in his efforts to reach professional status.
Jacob Lines has already achieved success in many competitions & the Lions have agreed to support him for four years.
An update of how Jacob is progressing is appended under the photographs.
Frome Kayaker Reaches Premier Division
Jacob Lines. Aged 14, of Frome Canoe Club has become the youngest paddler in the West Country to reach Canoe Slalom’s Premier Division. Jacob has been paddling with the Club since he was 8 years old, but started competing in canoe slalom three years ago. Since then he has climbed the divisions rapidly, training and competing nationally, and has become the first person at Frome Canoe Club to achieve promotion to the Premier division.
Jacob achieved his milestone at a recent race in Llandysul, Wales, where he achieved a 4th place on the first day of racing and his first division 1 win on Sunday, accruing enough points to earn him promotion. “I’m very pleased for Jacob. He really deserves this promotion”, said British Canoeing Coach Zak Franklin. Fellow paddlers at Frome Canoe Club, Aimee Collins and Finn Johnson also achieved personal best results at the same event.
Canoe slalom is a highly competitive, international sport which is gaining in popularity and success. Competitors race down a course, usually on white water, navigating their boat through a series of hanging poles or ‘gates’. Penalties are given for touching a gate (2 seconds added) or missing / incorrectly navigating a gate (50 seconds added), and the winner is the paddler who completes the course in the faster time including their penalties. Each paddler has two runs but only the fastest run including penalties is counted.
Great Britain has seen significant success in the Olympic Games since 2012, and the World Championships, winning several gold and silver medals, and British Canoeing are investing heavily in maintaining this success. After being noticed for his race results, Jacob was invited to join British Canoeing’s Regional Talent Academy in 2017, before being elevated to their Super Regional Squad for the 2018/19 season. Aimee Collins and Finn and Otto Johnson from Frome Canoe Club are also members of the RTA squad.
Jacob is driven by his long-term goal to represent Great Britain in the sport at the Olympic Games. “I know it’s going to be tough” he said, “but I believe in myself to keep getting the good results and I’m putting a lot of hard work to get them. I train twice a week with Frome Canoe Club, as well as training sessions at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham and the Olympic Course at Lee Valley. I also put in time at gym sessions and one-to-one strength and conditioning coaching. I want to thank everyone at the Lions, as well as all my coaches at Frome Canoe Club and British Canoeing for all the help and support they give me, and my family who give up a lot to allow me to train and race.”
Jacob will be training hard all winter with a view to really pushing on with results and his national ranking when racing starts again in March. He’s currently ranked 5th in the GB rankings for his age group. Jacob receives support from the Frome Lions, to help him fund equipment such as paddles, safety equipment and specialist kit and clothing.
Jacob has recently been training at the Olympic Course in Lee Valley ( November 2019 ) a couple of pictures below :-