Michal Smolen

Canoe/Kayak

Hometown: Gastonia, N.C.
Birthplace: Krakow, Poland
Event/Discipline: Slalom K-1 and C-1
Birthdate: 9/13/1993
Height: 5'11"
School: Queens University
Club: Nantahala Racing Club

2014 U.S. Senior & Under-23 Team Member

Career Highlights:

  • 2012 U.S. National Championships: 1st
  • 5th at 2012 U-23 World Championships
  • 2nd at 2012 US Olympic Team Trials
  • GOLD at 2011 Vadja Teen Cup No. 2 (Liptovský Mikuláš, Slovakia) in U18 Men's K-1, GOLD at Teen Cup No. 3 (Solkan, Slovenia), SILVER at Teen Cup No. 4 (Tacen, Slovenia)
  • Finished 1st among junior and senior men's kayaks at 2011 US Team Trials
  • 3-time U.S. Junior National Champion
  • 6th at 2010 U.S. Open
  • 4th at 2010 Junior World Championships
  • 2nd at Navey Saez Cup in Poland

Recent Results:

  • 2014 U.S. Team Trials: 2nd in K-1
  • 2014 U.S. Open: 1st in K-1, 5th in C-1
  • 2014 Oceania Championships: 5th in K-1, 12th in C-1
  • 2013 World Championships: 39th
  • 2013 Final World Cup Series Rankings: 34th
  • 2013 World Cup Final: 39th, SILVER in Team K1
  • 2013 World Cup No. 4: 53rd
  • 2013 U-23 World Championships: 18th
  • 2013 World Cup No. 2: 20th
  • 2013 World Cup No. 1: 14th
  • 2013 U.S. Team Trials: 2nd
  • 2013 U.S. Open: 1st
  • 54th at 2012 World Cup No. 3
  • 27th at 2012 World Cup No. 2
  • Reached semifinals at the 2012 Oceania Open - placing 24th

Personal:

  • Nickname: "Meesh"
  • Job: works at U.S. National Whitewater Center
  • Hobbies: kayaking, movies, biking
  • Quote: "Winning isn't everything, but making the effort to win is."
  • Getting started: My dad, Rafal Smolen, was on the Polish National Team.
  • Role Model: Campbell Walsh, because he is what I call a "little beast"
  • Trivia: I want to be a doctor.
  • Website: http://michalsmolen.com/
  • Follow Michal on Facebook and Twitter @MichalSmolen
  • To learn more about Michal, watch this video feature.

Michal is a member of the US Junior National Team and a member of the Nantahala Racing Club in North Carolina. Michal has been racing slalom for over five years and has represented the United States in world-class races.

He currently lives and trains in Charlotte, NC at the US National Whitewater Center, a US Olympic Training Site. He is coached by his father, Rafal Smolen. Michal paddles a Vajda boat, Braca paddle, and uses Sandiline gear.


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