Concept

Eirik Verås Larsen

Summary
Eirik Verås Larsen (born 26 March 1976 in Flekkefjord) is a Norwegian sprint kayaker who has competed internationally since the early 1990s. He has participated in three Summer Olympics, and has won a complete set of medals (gold: 2004 K-1 1000 m and 2012 K-1 1000 m, silver: 2008 K-1 1000 m, bronze: 2004 K-2 1000 m). Eirik Verås Larsen's definitive international breakthrough came when he and his companion Nils Olav Fjeldheim won the European Championship K2-1000 gold medal in 2000. Verås Larsen started kayaking at the age of 10 in Flekkefjord, a small town at the south west coast with 8000 inhabitants. Flekkefjord Kayak Club had a history of producing world champions – such as his coach Olaf Søyland who won gold medals in K4-10 000m in 1975 and in the K2-1000m in 1979. As a young competitive athlete on national level Verås Larsen was never the top ranking guy. He was however known as being dedicated, hard working, and he was feared by many for his endurance capacity. Towards the end of his teenage years his hard work started to pay off, and as a 17-year-old he surprised many by winning the bronze medal in the 1993 Nordic Marathon Junior Championship in Sweden. Verås Larsen moved to Oslo in 1995 in order to be surrounded by the best racers in Norway. For several years he trained in the group around Knut Holman, the number one dominating athlete in the men's K1-1000 meter throughout the 1990s (three olympic gold medals, five times world champion). Eirik Verås Larsen's definitive international breakthrough came when he and his companion Nils Olav Fjeldheim won the European Championship K2-1000 gold medal in 2000 in Poznań, Poland. The achievement resulted in a wild-card from the International Canoe Federation for participation in the Sydney Olympics the same year, where they placed 9th on K2-1000. In 2001 Verås Larsen won his first World Champion gold medal. He and Nils Olav Fjeldheim were superior to the other teams in the K2-1000 final in Poznań, Poland. This was the start of Verås Larsen's golden years.
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