90 Canadian track and field athletes to represent Canada at the Pan Am Games
Athletics Canada and the Canadian Olympic Committee today nominated 44 women and 46 men for a total of 90 athletes to the 2015 Pan American Games team.
Canadian athletics (track and field) enters the Pan American Games on a remarkable run. Eight athletes have already set Canadian records in 2015 and are all being nominated to the Pan American Games team.
Shawn Barber of Toronto, Ont., has set both indoor and outdoor records in the men’s pole vault. This past weekend he won the NCAA title, his third. Andre De Grasse of Markham, Ont., took home a pair of NCAA titles in the 100-metres and 200-metres. This season De Grasse has reset the indoor and outdoor records in the 200-metres.
Other recent Canadian record breakers on the Pan American Games team are Elizabeth Gleadle of Vancouver, B.C. (javelin), Cam Levins of Black Creek, B.C. (10,000m), Christabel Nettey of Surrey, B.C. (long jump), Rachel Seaman of Peterborough, Ont. (20km race walk), Brianne Theisen-Eaton of Humboltd, Sask. (heptathlon), and Natasha Wodak of Vancouver, B.C. (10,000m).
“The Pan American Games are important along our Road to Rio, along with the World Championships later this summer which are our main target,” said Peter Eriksson, Athletics Canada Chief Technical Officer and Head Coach. “The track and field team will have a great showing in Toronto with many athletes already setting Canadian records and sitting near the top of the World Standings.”
The 2015 Canadian Track and Field Championships in Edmonton, Alta., July 2 to 5 will play an important role for these athletes as they show proof of readiness for competition at the Pan American Games. The Championships also serve as the selection Trials for the World Championships later this summer and the Panamerican Junior Championships, also to be held in Edmonton (July 31 – August 2).
“I’m really excited to have the opportunity to compete at the Pan Am Games in front of a Canadian crowd with world-class competitors to push me to my best,” said Brianne Theisen-Eaton who will compete in the long jump and 4x400-metres relay. “The relay is going to be so awesome as I haven’t run a relay event since college, the team aspect of track and field is always so much fun.” Theisen-Eaton won silver at the 2013 World Championships in the heptathlon, and gold at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
The Canadian athletics team won four medals at the last Pan American Games in 2011 (Guadalajara, Mexico). The team counts three Pan American Games medallists; Sultana Frizell, 2011, hammer throw silver, Jessica Zelinka, 2007, heptathlon gold, Jim Steacy, 2007, hammer throw gold.
Athletics competition begins July 18 at the Pan American Games with the women’s marathon and continues through to July 26. Click here for the full athletics competition schedule.
Prior to being named to the final Canadian Pan American Team, all nominations are subject to approval by the Canadian Olympic Committee’s Team Selection Committee following its receipt of nominations by all National Sport Federations towards the end of June 2015.
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