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Olivier Sets Sights on Paddling her Way to 2024 Olympics



Esti Olivier is set on the 2024 Olympics

South Africa’s canoe sprint veteran Esti Olivier is set on the 2024 Olympics, determined to overcome the disappointment of missing out on qualifying for the Tokyo Games. Olivier, who considers this her best World Cup season yet, is focused on earning her ticket to Paris 2024.

Despite narrowly missing out on the only event she had never participated in due to strict qualification policies, Olivier’s performances in the build-up competitions have been promising. Her recent achievements at the Canoe Sprint World Cup in Poland, where she secured top placements in various categories, have bolstered her confidence for the upcoming ICF World Championships and the Olympics next year.

Olivier is optimistic about the changes in policies from the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc), which now provide more support for athletes and recognise the various qualification criteria across sporting codes.

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Reflecting on her career, Olivier acknowledges the discipline, perseverance, and lessons in handling victories and losses that canoeing has taught her. She is passionate about positively impacting the lives of athletes and addressing the shortcomings she has personally experienced.


One significant challenge Olivier faced throughout her career was funding, often having to finance her international trips herself. While she emphasises the need for more investment in the sport, she also believes that creating strong training groups, fostering a competitive environment, and providing proper support can contribute to the sport’s growth, even without substantial financial resources.

Despite the funding challenges, Olivier takes pride in witnessing the sport’s growth, particularly among young paddlers who emulate their professional idols. She recognises the importance of adapting and improving the existing structures to provide athletes with valuable experiences and exposure to high-level competitions.

As Esti Olivier continues her journey towards the 2024 Olympics, her determination, resilience, and passion for the sport inspire aspiring athletes and remind them of the importance of creating a supportive and nurturing environment for their development.

Source: Olivier to paddle her way to 2024 Olympics

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Picture: Facebook / Brandon Orpwood

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