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The Olympics are simply days away — listed below are some Canadians to look at
Canada is sending 371 athletes to Tokyo — the nation’s largest Olympic workforce for the reason that 1984 Video games in Los Angeles. They vary in age from 14 (swimmer Summer season McIntosh) to 56 (equestrian rider Mario Deslauriers) and so they’ll compete in virtually three dozen sports activities. With a gaggle this massive and numerous, you may guess that somebody we have not seen but will do one thing extraordinary in Tokyo. That is one of many nice issues in regards to the Olympics. However, for now, listed below are a number of the athletes we’re anticipating large issues from as soon as competitors begins subsequent week:
Christine Sinclair: The 38-year-old ahead has scored extra occasions than anybody within the historical past of worldwide soccer. She has two extra targets than American nice Abby Wambach, 77 greater than Cristiano Ronaldo and 109 greater than Pele. In what might be her closing Olympics, Sinclair will attempt to lead the Canadian girls’s workforce to the rostrum for the third consecutive time.
Andre De Grasse: After going toe-to-toe with Usain Bolt in Rio and coming away with three medals, the 26-year-old sprinter has an opportunity to drag off the 100m/200m/4x100m podium triple once more. De Grasse’s occasions have been so-so this yr, significantly within the 100. However that occasion is large open now with Bolt retired and reigning world champ Christian Coleman suspended. Plus, De Grasse has all the time delivered in large races: he is reached the rostrum in all 5 particular person occasions he is entered on the Olympics or world championships. Learn extra about De Grasse on this profile by CBC Sports activities contributor Vivek Jacob.
The swimmers: So many Canadian girls are contenders for a person medal that it could be unfair to call just one. On the prime of the record is Kylie Masse, who constructed on her bronze within the 100m backstroke in Rio by successful the world title in each 2017 and ’19. She added a bronze within the 200 again on the ’19 worlds. Canada has one other reigning world champ in Maggie Mac Neil (100m butterfly), and Sydney Pickrem took bronze in each the 200 breaststroke and 200 medley in Rio. Penny Oleksiak hasn’t reached the rostrum in a person occasion at a serious worldwide meet since her gorgeous gold- and silver-medal swims as a 16-year-old in Rio, however she appeared rejuvenated finally month’s Canadian trials. Oleksiak swam her finest time within the 100 freestyle since setting the Olympic report and tying American Simone Manuel for gold in Rio. Then there’s Summer season McIntosh, the 14-year-old sensation who stole the present on the trials by beating Oleksiak within the 200 free and in addition successful the 800. On the alternative finish of the age curve is Brent Hayden. The 2007 world champion and 2012 Olympic bronze medallist within the males’s 100m freestyle got here out of a seven-year retirement to win the 50 free on the trials. At 37, he is about to change into the oldest Canadian ever to swim within the Olympics. Learn extra about this thrilling wave of Canadian swimmers on this story by CBC Sports activities’ Devin Heroux.
Damian Warner: The 31-year-old decathlete has been a podium fixture for the higher a part of a decade, successful medals on the 2016 Olympics and the 2013, ’15 and ’19 world championships. He is additionally received gold on the Pan Am Video games (twice) and the Commonwealth Video games. This might be the yr Warner lastly reaches the highest step at one of many actually large meets. In Might, he broke his personal three-year-old Canadian report by scoring 8,995 factors. Solely three decathletes have ever scored increased, and so they’re all Olympic and/or world champions.
Rosie MacLennan: In Rio, the trampolinist grew to become the primary Canadian ever to repeat as Olympic champion in a person summer season occasion. MacLennan went on to win the 2018 world title and took bronze on the ’19 worlds in Tokyo regardless of struggling a damaged ankle seven months earlier than the competitors. Learn in regards to the 32-year-old’s quest for an Olympic three-peat on this story by CBC Sports activities’ Jamie Strashin.
Laurence Vincent Lapointe: Girls’s canoe is lastly within the Olympics, and Vincent Lapointe has dominated the 2 occasions that might be held in Tokyo. She owns seven world titles within the 200m singles and 4 within the 500m doubles. It appeared like Vincent Lapointe won’t make it to Tokyo after she examined constructive for a banned muscle-builder in the summertime of 2019, however her provisional suspension was overturned after she efficiently argued she did not knowingly take the drug. Vincent Lapointe was virtually neglected of the Olympics anyway as a result of her ban prevented her from qualifying earlier than the pandemic hit, however the Canadian workforce discovered a manner round that final week by reallocating one in every of its kayak spots to her. Vincent Lapointe and Katie Vincent will compete as a doubles pair and within the solo occasion in Tokyo. Learn extra about Vincent Lapointe’s winding street to the Olympics right here.
Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes: Seashore volleyball is all the time successful on the Olympics, and Canada has the most effective girls’s duos on the planet. The 6-foot-5 Pavan and the 5-9 Humana Paredes received the world title in 2019 and head to Tokyo ranked No. 1 on the earth.
Meaghan Benfeito: The 32-year-old diver already owns three Olympic bronze medals — one within the 10-metre particular person occasion, two within the 10m synchro with former associate Roseline Filion, who’s now retired. In Tokyo, Benfeito will once more compete in each the solo occasion and the synchro, this time with 22-year-old Caeli McKay.
Ellie Black: Just one Canadian has ever received an Olympic medal in conventional gymnastics (Kyle Shewfelt took gold within the males’s ground occasion in 2004) and no Canadian lady has ever reached the rostrum. However Black, 25, has a shot after taking silver within the all-around occasion on the 2017 world championships in Montreal and ending fourth on the ’19 worlds. In Tokyo, she’ll be up in opposition to the good Simone Biles, who’s seeking to repeat as all-around champ. Learn extra about Black and her “aggressive” fashion, as Shewfelt describes it, in this story by The Canadian Press’ Donna Spencer.