Canoe talent powers home in Portugal


Nottingham sprint canoeist, Stelian Naftanaila, is celebrating after finishing 8th at the ICF World Cup 1 in Montemor O Velho, Portugal.

The Mechanical Engineering student also put in a top class performance at the recent U23 national championships, powering home to victory in both the K1 200m and K4 500m events.

“Racing internationally is always exciting. World Cup 1 was a good opportunity to see where I’m at compared to some of the more established senior athletes so as you can imagine, I’m really pleased with the final ranking.”

“Winning the K1 200m and K4 500m in the nationals made this probably my most successful regatta to date. And what’s more it means I’ve been selected to race both events at European and World championships later this summer.”

“I prefer the 200m due to its explosive nature, however the k4 is another very fast event. And with its recent inclusion in the Olympic program it is certainly a boat I aspire to be in.”

The 22-year-old has been supported by TASS throughout his university education at University of Nottingham, receiving core services including lifestyle guidance, nutrition and a private medical scheme.

Under the watchful eye of Scholarship Manager and TASS Lead, Phil Wood, Naftanaila has exploited all the services the program has to offer.

“I feel very privileged to have received a TASS Award again this year. In particular the S&C and physiotherapy support have been hugely beneficial for me.

“The help of TASS has definitely contributed to the success I’ve had so far this season”, he explained.

Due to graduate from University of Nottingham this summer, Naftanaila is now looking forward to his next chapter and life after education.

“I’m happy with my Mechanical Engineering degree but at the moment I’m still considering which route to pursue.

“I’ve already sent off some applications, but I’ll really step up the job hunt after the European and World Championships as I know there’s no guarantees!”

Phil Wood added: “It’s wonderful to see Stelian have this success, I am not surprised though as he works so hard and does great job utilising the support he receives from TASS and the University of Nottingham.”