The country’s top canoe and kayak athletes will compete in the first step of the Olympic selection process with an eye on Tokyo 2020

The best canoe and kayak athletes from around the country will compete in the ACA Sprint and Slalom National Team Trials April 12-14 in downtown Oklahoma City’s Boathouse District. More than 110 athletes from age 14 to 45 are expected to compete.

“National Team Trials is the beginning of the Olympic selection process,” explained OKC RIVERSPORT Manager of Paddlesports Aasim Saleh. “Those with a good showing at team trials will be selected for the Junior, Senior and Para World Championships later this year.”

The America Canoe Association’s search for a venue for nationals was an easy one.

“The ACA chose to hold nationals in Oklahoma City because the Boathouse District is the only location in the country that can hold whitewater and flatwater competitions simultaneously,” said executive director Mike Knopp. “Plus, our proximity to great hotels and restaurants in Bricktown and Downtown made their decision a no-brainer.”

In conjunction, RIVERSPORT OKC will also host Team Canada’s Slalom National Team Trials on RIVERSPORT Rapids. Athletes from four Canadian provinces, including Alberta, British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec, as well as two Canadian Nationals from France, will compete.

“Team Canada consistently brings their slalom kayakers to train at RIVERSPORT Rapids,” said Knopp. “RIVERSPORT Rapids is the best competitive whitewater course in North America.”

Participating athletes will compete in the Boathouse District April 12-14.