Germany’s Sideris Tasiadis claimed his first-ever ICF Canoe Slalom World Cup win in Prague today ©Balint Vekassy/ICF

Germany’s Sideris Tasiadis spoke of the difficult times he has had in the past two years since his girlfriend’s death from leukemia after claiming his first-ever International Canoe Federation (ICF) Canoe Slalom World Cup win in Prague today. 

The 27-year-old could not hide his emotion as he crossed the line in the men’s C1 final, clocking a time of 1 min 40.36sec at the Troja venue.

"This is my first World Cup win," he said.

"The last two years have been very difficult with my girlfriend having this terrible disease.

"Now I have a new girlfriend, she makes me stronger.

"You have to look into the future."

Tasiadis, the men’s C1 silver medallist at the London 2012 Olympic Games, finished 1.52 seconds ahead of Rio 2016 silver medallist Matej Benus of Slovakia.

Italy’s Raffaello Ivaldi was 1.55 seconds off the pace in third.

In the women’s K1 final, Spain’s Maialen Chourraut posted an error-free time of 1:44.68 to edge out yesterday’s C1 winner Kimberley Woods of Great Britain by a margin of 0.24 seconds.

Germany’s Ricarda Funk rounded out the podium in 1:48.06 with four seconds worth of penalties.

Spain's Maialen Chourraut triumphed in the women's K1 event ©Getty Images
Spain's Maialen Chourraut triumphed in the women's K1 event ©Getty Images

Chourraut’s path to the top of the podium was difficult, needing a second run in qualifying to make the semi-final.

The Rio 2016 gold medallist revealed she has been battling vertigo since last year’s Olympics and has had trouble training.

"It’s incredible - I can’t believe I have started the season like this," Chourraut said.

"Prague is a very difficult course for me.

"I have never made a semi-final here - today was my first time.

"For me, this year has been very difficult.

"I have had some problems during the year.

"I have had vertigo.

"I feel like everything is moving."

Host nation Czech Republic also had reason to celebrate today as Tereza Fiserova and Jakub Jane triumphed in the mixed C2 final.

The duo finished in 2:07.82, beating compatriots Veronika Vojtova and Jan Masek by 56.84 seconds.

The second ICF Canoe Slalom World Cup is due to begin in German city Augsburg next Friday (June 23).