Olympics: Canoe/kayak

Fifteen months out from the London 2012 Games might seem early for a milestone qualifying competition, but last weekend's USA Canoe/Kayak slalom team trials were just that.

Six runs over three days at the National Whitewater Center outside Charlotte, N.C., determined the men's and women's teams that will compete at every important event for the rest of the year, including this summer's World Championships, World Cup races, a July test event in London and the Pan American Championships. Results from those events will determine how many slots the U.S. will have in London.

The three men named to the team in the Single Kayak (K1) event will be familiar to those who follow the sport: 2004 Olympian Brett Heyl; 2008 Olympian Scott Parsons and two-time national champion Scott Mann, who was the Olympic alternate in both of those Games.

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I wondered if I had hit a time warp when I spotted Joe Jacobi's name among the podium finishers at the U.S. canoe and kayak national slalom championships held in Dickerson, Md., the last weekend of September.

Jacobi, a 1992 Olympic gold medalist in the double canoe (C-2) slalom event, teamed with Scott Davis to take second place in the same event. Since Jacobi is 41, and just had the "interim" dropped from his chief executive officer's title at USA Canoe/Kayak, I figured this might constitute a story.

"I am absolutely not making a comeback," Jacobi said, laughing, when I reached him at the federation's offices in Charlotte, N.C.

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