Canoe sprint duo Vincent Lapointe, Vincent advance to 500m semifinals

Canadian canoe sprint duo Laurence Vincent Lapointe and Katie Vincent are through to the 500 metres semifinals.

The two-time world champions took the long route on Friday morning in Tokyo, placing third in their first heat of the night to miss automatic qualification by less than one second. But the Canadians rebounded to win their quarter-final less than two hours later to surge into the next round.

The semis begin Friday at 8:30 p.m. ET, with the final at 10:30 p.m. ET.

After posting a time of two minutes 2.170 seconds in their first race at Sea Forest Waterway, Vincent Lapointe and Vincent crossed the finish line in 2:02.259 to win their quarter-final sprint.

WATCH | Vincent Lapointe takes silver in 200m sprint:

Laurence Vincent Lapointe, from Trois-Rivières, Que., paddled her way to a silver medal in the Olympic debut of the women’s singles canoe 200 metres. Nevin Harrison of the U.S. won gold while Katie Vincent of Mississauga, Ont. finished eighth. 6:42

They set the world record at 1:51.428 at the world championships in 2018.

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On Thursday, Vincent Lapointe, 29, snagged silver in her debut Olympic event, the individual 200-metre canoe sprint. Vincent, 25, placed eighth in the final.

“I’ve never cried on a podium. It hit me like a brick wall. I’ve done it. I’ve done it,” Vincent Lapointe told CBC Sports. “Two years. I don’t know what to say. I don’t know how I did it.” 

The Trois-Rivieres, Que., native endured a two-year legal battle just to get to Tokyo after proving a failed drug test was the result of second-hand contamination.

Tokyo 2020 marks the first time women’s canoe sprint was contested in the Olympics, making the sport gender-equal.