Paralympic slalom champion Gurimu Narita wants to compete in canoe at Tokyo Olympics

Kyodo

Gurimu Narita, the men’s Pyeongchang Paralympic banked slalom champion, is looking to compete in canoe at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

“This is a sport in which my disability won’t hinder me,” said the 24-year-old, whose left leg is numb below the knee. On Sunday, he took part in the Japan Cup, an event for able-bodied canoeists in Iwate Prefecture that attracted top-level competitors from around Japan.

Although a novice with roughly 15 days of practice under his belt, Narita competed in the swift current. He had a few slip-ups including missing some gates, but finished both of his qualifying runs.

“I was taken aback. The current was faster than I imagined,” said Narita, who wants to also compete in the Tokyo Paralympics. “To compete in both the Olympics and the Paralympics in two years’ time represents a massive obstacle, but I want to try.

“I want to put my heart and soul into that next step ahead of me.”