Local Olympic kayaker Caroline Queen failed to qualify for the finals in the women's kayak event, but she had nothing but praise of the event and the Olympic experience as a whole.
The 20-year-old from Darnestown, Md., said that despite a threat of a “pretty deadly” 50-second penalty she was “glad to be here representing Team USA and giving it [her] best,” adding that “regardless of what sport it is, I’ve always felt that it is always important to have heart.”
According to NBC Olympics' Mike Pescaro, Queen's first run was a solid 117.05 seconds, which would have qualified her had the ranks stayed the same. The waters got a little faster in the second run, but Queen did not. She finished in 136.23 seconds after being called for four seconds of penalties. A major factor in that time was having to paddle back to a gate. Had she missed it, 50 seconds would have been added to her score.
The top 15 finishers moved on to the finals. Queen, unfortunately, finished a disappointing 17th -- eight seconds off of a time to advance, and 18 seconds behind the leader. But she spoke highly of the course.
“It’s been great, this is the best course in the world, and I'm privileged to have had the chance the race here and have no regrets,” she said.
“It’s a little emotional, win lose or draw its always emotional, but you just have to be happy to be here and have the shot," she added. "Of course I was disappointed because I really did have a good run going, but again, no regrets, just happy it came. ... There might be some tears, but there will be an equal number of smiles in the future.”