BRADFORD on Avon paddler Hannah Brown says a bronze medal at the ICF World Wildwater Championships in France was a fairytale end to her season.

Brown, the two-time and reigning world champion from 2013 and 2016, qualified fifth fastest in the heats in Pau and produced a storming run in a time of 52.37 seconds to take the lead with four athletes still to paddle.

The French duo of Claire Bren and Manon Hostens denied the Wiltshire woman, 27, a third world title, Brown finishing just 0.64 seconds off the winner.

The venue had come with some bad memories for Brown after she dislocated her shoulder there a year ago.

With that in mind, the future Olympic hopeful admits it is good to finally put her injury behind her, with a podium finish at the highest level.

“It was quite a long day because we weren’t racing until late on so we had a lot of time to kill and get ready,” she said.

“It was one of the biggest events I have been to, there were thousands of people in the crowd and there was a wall of noise.

“When I started off I had a blinder of a run until the last 30 metres where I made a small mistake - I read the water slightly wrong.

“That made me skew out and lose a bit of boat run and I crossed the line knowing it wasn’t quite as fast as it could have been.

“It was quite special because when I was there last year, I dislocated my shoulder so to go back to the same venue was a milestone.

“From a psychological point of view, I can close the book on the injury now and it mentally marks the end of the rehab, it was a fairytale ending.”

This year has also seen Brown claim another bronze alongside Angela Hannah in the K2 200m at the ICF Canoe Sprint World Championships in Racice last month.

After a hugely successful season, the 27-year-old now plans to take some time off, before planning her route to the Tokyo Olympics in three years’ time.

“Two get two medals in the two events was an aim and it’s been one of the best years of my career so far,” she added.

“Short term, I’m having a couple of weeks off to give my body and my mind have a bit of a break from paddling.

“Then I’ll sit down and plan the next three years, looking towards Tokyo 2020 and every year is a stepping stone towards that.”