Olympic champ Baillie tips Stott for World Championship glory

Etienne Stott is aiming to add to his medal collection
Etienne Stott is aiming to add to his medal collection

Olympic champion Tim Baillie believes former partner Etienne Stott has the ability to add Canoe Slalom World Championship gold to the title he won at London 2012.

Baillie and Bedford’s Stott took C-2 gold at the London Games before the former decided to hang up his paddle and retire.

That left Stott to team up with Mark Proctor and the duo now face their biggest challenge as the World Championships heads to London’s Lee Valley in September.

Stott has two World Championship bronze medals to his name from 2009 and 2011 but Baillie believes home water advantage could provide the perfect platform for further success.

“I think in this sport it is really hard to be consistent and often the most consistent boat is the one that wins,” he said.

“They both have a lot of experience now in their careers and have come together at a time when they know what they are doing.

“Looking at this season so far you would have to say that their World Cup performances haven’t been what they wanted them to be.

“I think that they have a good chance at the World Championships especially with it being at home, that could be a huge factor.

“They will know the course and they will know what it takes to win there so if they pull it all together then they could be dangerous.”

Baillie continued: “Hopefully they do that and we will see them on the podium at the end of the competition but you just never know.”

Stott and Proctor only came together in July of last year and have been working solidly to forge a partnership that can make it to Rio 2016 and challenge for medals.

And Baillie believes the duo’s combined experience could play a pivotal role in their drive for Olympic glory.

“Experience is very important when you are going into big competitions and they have that know-how that can really help,” he added.

“When you go to the competitions in Europe you don’t get a lot of time to practice on the courses before it’s time to go.

“With the Championships being on home water it means that they know the course well and will have had the time to work on it.

“That could play a huge factor and I think they have every chance of making it to the final and once they do that then anything can happen.”

See the world’s top canoe slalom athletes in action on the Olympic course in London at the Canoe Slalom World Championships. Tickets: www.ticketmaster.co.uk/london2015