Rowing Canada Names Roster for Last Chance Olympic Qualifier for Paris

Rowing Canada Names Roster for Last Chance Olympic Qualifier for Paris

It’s the Final Push in Lucerne: Can Canada Secure More Olympic Spots?

The stakes are high, and the pressure is on as Rowing Canada unveiled its roster for the last-chance Olympic qualifying regatta set to take place from May 19-21 in Lucerne, Switzerland. With only two crews currently qualified for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games, the spotlight is firmly on the Canadian rowing team to deliver when it matters most.

Based on Quamichan Lake in North Cowichan, the Canadian rowing team has a rich history of Olympic success. However, the program faces a critical juncture as it seeks to bolster its roster and secure additional spots for the highly anticipated Paris Games.

A Bold Move to Boost Medal Hopes

In a strategic move aimed at enhancing Canada’s medal prospects, the defending Tokyo 2020 Olympic gold-medallist Canadian women’s eight has welcomed Caileigh Filmer of Victoria into its ranks. The Mount Douglas Secondary graduate, who clinched bronze in the women’s pair at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, is set to make a significant impact in the eights for Paris.

Despite the team's previous Olympic success and a lineup that includes University of Victoria Vikes grad Avalon Wasteneys, Brentwood College-grad Sydney Payne, Kasia Gruchalla-Wesierski, and cox Kristen Kit, the Canadian women’s eight faces the challenge of elevating their performance. Filmer, with her Olympic experience and proven track record, is poised to provide the much-needed spark to reignite Canada’s gold medal ambitions.

“It’s certainly different to be back in a big boat after focusing on the pair for so long, but it’s part of the reason I wanted to return to rowing,” said Filmer. “I’m determined to help Canada reclaim gold this summer and rewrite my previous Olympic result with the added experience I’ve gained over the years.”

Strength in Diversity: New Crew Members Bring Olympic Experience

Joining Filmer in the women’s eight are Kristina Walker and Jessica Sevick of Victoria, Abby Dent from the 2023 Santiago Pan Am Games gold-medallist eight, and Maya Meschkuleit from Yale of the Ivy League. With a blend of seasoned veterans and promising newcomers, the team is gearing up to make waves in Lucerne and secure their ticket to Paris.

Other Contenders Eyeing Olympic Berths

Alongside the women’s eight, the women’s lightweight double of Jill Moffatt and Jenny Casson, who finished fourth in the 2023 world championships, is another crew currently qualified for the Paris Olympics. Both teams will have an opportunity to showcase their skills at the World Cup 2 regatta in Lucerne from May 24-26.

On the men’s side, the Canadian men’s eight, led by 2012 London Olympics silver-medallist Will Crothers, is determined to clinch a top-two finish in Lucerne to earn their spot in Paris. With a mix of Tokyo Olympians and emerging talent, including Gavin Stone, Jakub Buczek, Curtis Ames, Joel Cullen, Ryan Clegg, and Terek Been, the team is pushing each other to the limit as they prepare for the final qualifier in May.

Additionally, Canada’s women’s quad, featuring Katie Clark of Cranbrook, Marilou Duvernay-Tardiff, Shannon Kennedy, and two-time Olympian Carling Zeeman, is also vying for a top-two finish in Lucerne to secure their place in the Paris Games.

Final Thoughts

As the clock ticks down to the last-chance Olympic qualifier in Lucerne, the Canadian rowing team is leaving no stone unturned in their quest for Olympic glory. With a renewed sense of determination, a talented roster, and the unwavering support of fans across the country, Canada’s rowers are ready to rise to the occasion and make their mark on the world stage in Paris.

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