Athletics Canada nominates 24 athletes to Team Canada for Rio 2016 Paralympic Games
Athletics Canada and the Canadian Paralympic Committee have announced the nomination of 24 athletes for selection to Team Canada for this September’s Paralympic Games in Rio.
The team is headlined by multiple Paralympic medallists Brent Lakatos of Dorval, Que., Michelle Stilwell of Parksville, B.C., and Diane Roy of Sherbrooke, Que., along with world champion Guillaume Ouellet of Victoriaville, Que.
“Our nominated athletes in para-athletics bring world-class accomplishments and exciting potential to the Rio 2016 Canadian Paralympic Team,” said Team Canada’s Chef de Mission Chantal Petitclerc. “I know that all our athletes and coaches are making the most of these final few weeks of preparation before the Games as they work towards a peak performance in Rio. I can’t wait to cheer them on at the start line in September.”
At the London 2012 Paralympic Games, Canada’s athletics team won nine medals, led by Lakatos with three silvers (200-metres, 400-metres and 800-metres). The 36-year-old Lakatos has also earned 12 International Paralympic Committee (IPC) World Championship podiums (including seven golds) and three Parapan American Games gold medals.
“I can’t wait for Rio,” said Lakatos. “These are my fourth Paralympic Games, and each one has been so different. Athens was a blur, Beijing was bitter disappointment and London was my first taste of the podium. This will be the first time I head in as a favorite.”
The team’s lone gold medallist at London 2012, Michelle Stilwell won gold in the T52 classification wheelchair 200-metres and silver in the 100-metres. Jason Dunkerley and guide Josh Karanja of Ottawa, Ont., won silver in the T11 visually impaired 5000-metres and bronze in the 1500-metres. Guillaume Ouellet will make his Paralympic Games debut as the reigning world champion in the T13 classification 5000-metres, while Rio will mark Diane Roy’s sixth Paralympic Games, an impressive career that has seen her win five Paralympic Games medals overall.
“Congratulations to all the athletes named today to Canada’s athletics team bound for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games,” said the Honorable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities. “Our Government is a proud supporter of Athletics Canada and our athletes should know that all Canadians are behind them as they go for gold in Brazil.”
The Rio 2016 Paralympic Games are set for Sept. 7th to 18th. The athletics competition takes place Sept. 8th through 18th.