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Coach Olsen leaving Canoe Racing NZ

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 20/06/2017

Canoe Racing New Zealand is hailing the impact of departing national women's coach Rene Olsen, who has been snapped up by Great Britain.

Danish-born Olsen will finish his contract after the under-23 world championships in July before joining the British Canoeing high performance programme.

Olsen's tenure has coincided with a golden period over the past three years.

He has helped maintain the international success of double Olympic champion Lisa Carrington while also overseeing a growth in depth among women's paddlers.

It culminated at two recent World Cup events in Europe, where the eight-strong women's team snared six gold medals.

Last year he took a rookie K4 crew all the way to a maiden Olympic appearance, where they placed fifth in Rio.

CRNZ chief executive Mark Weatherall is sad to see Olsen move on.

"Rene has created and implemented a world-class programme in his time here and he's substantially increased the depth of female paddlers in New Zealand," Weatherall said.

Olsen says he is proud of his achievements.

He said the attitude of the clubs and paddlers to buy into the national programme played a big part in their international success.

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