Isaquias Queiroz dos Santos storms to gold in men's single 1000m canoe sprint

Isaquias Queiroz dos Santos of Team Brazil celebrates winning the gold medal in the Men's Canoe Single 1000m Final A on day fifteen of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Sea Forest Waterway on August 07, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
Isaquias Queiroz dos Santos of Team Brazil celebrates winning the gold medal in the Men's Canoe Single 1000m Final A on day fifteen of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Sea Forest Waterway on August 07, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)

The 27-year-old Brazilian athlete clinches gold, whilst People's Republic of China's LIU Hao settles for silver and Republic of Moldova's Serghei Tarnovschi takes bronze

Brazil's Isaquias Queiroz dos Santos crossed the line first in a thrilling men's single 1000m race to claim the gold medal for Brazil.

The 27-year-old Brazilian athlete was neck and neck with People's Republic of China LIU Hao in the first quarter of the race but broke away in the last 250m and stormed to the finish line first at 4:04.408.

Liu came in second with a time of 4:05.724 behind Queiroz dos Santos. Meanwhile Republic of Moldova's Serghei Tarnovschi came up from behind to overtake France's Adrien Bart in the final second to clinch bronze.

This is the first gold medal for Queiroz dos Santos who won three Olympic medals (two silvers and bronze) at his home Games, five years ago in Rio.

“I feel like I have finally lifted the weight of the world from my back. That doesn’t mean I feel pressure, but I felt an obligation to the sport lovers of Brazil to represent our country. Now I feel way lighter," the athlete said.

Queiroz dos Santos plunged to the water after realising he'd won the gold medal.

“In Rio de Janeiro I worked hard to get a medal but sadly I couldn’t choose the colour so it was silver and bronze. This time I really wanted a better result, so I trained hard for that. I’m really happy with the result.

“Now I really want to relax and have some vacations but also prepare for pairs. I want more medals. It really feels good to be a medallist.”

TOKYO, JAPAN - AUGUST 07: Hao Liu of Team China celebrates winning the silver medal in the Men's Canoe Single 1000m Final A on day fifteen of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Sea Forest Waterway on August 07, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
TOKYO, JAPAN - AUGUST 07: Hao Liu of Team China celebrates winning the silver medal in the Men's Canoe Single 1000m Final A on day fifteen of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Sea Forest Waterway on August 07, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
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Liu, who won a silver medal in the men's canoe double last Tuesday 3 August with Zheng, also celebrated today's win by letting out a scream.

“I’m personally very excited to get this silver medal. It is very meaningful not only for me, but for my team. We have been through so many tough moments in the past four and five years but we have stuck together and try to make it through. My team is always supporting me.”

And Liu is already looking far ahead at Paris 2024.

“This silver medal will inspire the people back in China. We try to make it another peak for this sport and go again in Paris in three years’ time," the 27-year-old athlete said.