Lisa Carrington of New Zealand showed her class in the women's K1 500 and K4 500 events ©Getty Images

Olympic champions had an easy day out on the first day of the International Canoe Federation (ICF) Canoe Sprint World Cup in Račice.

New Zealand’s Lisa Carrington, who is a five-time Olympic champion, was in great form as she reached the women’s K1 500 final in one minute 49 seconds, before helping K4 500 teammates to seal a spot in the medal race.

The Polish women’s K4 500 crew featuring Karolina Naja and Anna Pulawska, who bagged a bronze in Tokyo, also showed their class by qualifying for the final in 1:30.91.

"We did what we needed to do to win," Pulawska said.

"We have been together maybe five times in a boat.

"We don’t know if this will be the boat for Paris, but we will see."

China’s Shixiao Xu and Mengya Sun continued their form from Tokyo by finishing three seconds ahead of the next best team during the women’s C2 500 heats.

The Spanish are setting the standards in the men’s C2 500 category as both teams won their respective qualifying heats.

Cayetano Garcia and Pablo Martinez stopped Tokyo C2 1000 silver medallists, Hao Liu and Pengfei Zheng of China in 1:39.53, before Joan Moreno and Adrian Sieiro ended the challenge from reigning world champions Nicolae Craciun and Daniele Santini from Italy in 1:39.81.

Brazil’s Isaquias dos Santos is through to the men’s C1 1000 final ©Getty Images
Brazil’s Isaquias dos Santos is through to the men’s C1 1000 final ©Getty Images

"This was such an important race for us because we get a chance to see what the international level is like," Moreno said.

"We see everyone competing with the same objective.

"We’ve been together for about one year. We are getting stronger all the time.

"The 500 is much better for us, because we are very fast guys, and the 1000 was quite long for us."

Brazil’s Isaquias dos Santos got the better of Germany’s reigning world champion Conrad Scheibner in 3:59.53 in the men’s C1 1000, despite not being the fastest in the heats.

In the men’s K1 1000, Italy’s K2 partners Samuele Burgo in 3:32.15 and Andrea Schera in 3:31.51, won their respective semi-finals to progress to Saturday’s final.

A total of 11 gold medals will be decided as the competition is scheduled to continue tomorrow.