Mid-season results confirm Canadian winter athletes on track for record podium performance; narrowing the gap on leading nation



    CALGARY, Jan. 25 /CNW/ - Own the Podium 2010 (OTP) released Canadian
winter athletes' mid-season world cup medal results today for the period
ending December 31, 2007, highlighting a year over year medal increase from 64
to 88 medals at the mid-point of the 2007-2008 competitive winter season.
These results indicate that Canada continues to strengthen its position on the
world cup standings among Olympic contending nations by narrowing the gap with
Germany who currently leads with the most number of medals and widening the
gap between the USA, Norway, Austria and other countries.
    "We are extremely proud of Canadian athletes' performances this season as
they are now beginning to achieve more consistent podium success at world cup
events," stated Dr. Roger Jackson, CEO, Own the Podium 2010. "The programs
that OTP has helped implement over the past years and the commitment by the
sports and athletes are contributing to this success. Together with the winter
national sport organizations, the Canadian Olympic Committee, the Canadian
Paralympic Committee, Sport Canada and the Vancouver Organizing Committee for
the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC), Own the Podium 2010 will
continue to help provide Canada's athletes with the support needed to achieve
OTP's goals of being the number one nation at the 2010 Olympics Games and
among the top 3 nations at the 2010 Paralympic Games," added Jackson.
    As of December 31, 2007, Germany had 93 world cup medals and Canada had a
record 88 world cup medals followed by the USA with 64 and Austria with 60.
Comparative charts for podium performances by sport, year and contending
nations as well as the list of the 2008 World Cup events being held in Canada
are available below.

    
    ----------------------------------------------------------
       Comparison of world cup medals per contending nation
           as of December 31, 2007 (*)Olympic Sports only
    ----------------------------------------------------------
                  2005-06           2006-07           2007-08
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    Germany           105                92                93
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    Canada             97                64                88
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    USA                94                54                64
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    Austria            48                38                60
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    Norway             47                42                53
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    Russia             61                35                33
    ----------------------------------------------------------

    -   Note that these are the contending nations for comparison in order to
        reach OTP's goal of being the number one nation at the 2010 Olympic
        Games
    -   Note that there was not the same number of competitions held in these
        respective seasons.
    -   Note that the December 31, 2007 results more accurately reflect
        international rankings as most high performance athletes are back to
        full-time competition, whereas some may not have competed during the
        2006-2007 post-Olympic season.


    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
     Canada's world cup medal count per sport for the 2007-2008 season,
                           as of December 31, 2007
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    SPORT           Gold           Silver            Bronze            Total
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Alpine Skiing      2                2                 2                6
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Biathlon                                                               0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Bobsleigh          2                1                 4                7
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Cross Country
     Skiing                                                                0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Curling                                                        No events
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Figure Skating     1                                  4                5
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Freestyle Skiing   2                                  3                5
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ice Hockey         0                                           No events
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Luge                                                                   0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Snowboarding       1                2                 3                6
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Long Track Speed
     Skating           9               16                 7               32
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Short Track Speed
     Skating           2                8                 9               19
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Skeleton           3                3                 2                8
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ski Cross                                                      No events
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Nordic Combined                                                        0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ski Jumping                                                            0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Para-Alpine Skiing                                             No events
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Para-Nordic Skiing                                             No events
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Wheelchair Curling                                             No events
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Sledge Hockey                                                  No events
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Total medals                                                          88
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Note:  there are no 2007-2008 winter mid-season Paralympic results to
           report on as Paralympic World Championships and World Cup events
           are being held in 2008. However, the 42 podium finishes from the
           Para-Alpine athletes at the Para-Alpine World Cup in January
           demonstrates that Canada is well on its way to finishing in the
           top three at the Paralympic Games in 2010.


    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Comparison of results of contending nations with previous results
                           (*)Olympic sports only
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  No. of World Cup          No. World Cup        2006 Torino
                  Podium finishes -         Podium finishes -    medals
                  '07-'08 season, to        '06-'07 season,
                  Dec. 31, 2007             final
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Germany                  93                    215                    29
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Canada                   88                    135                    24
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    USA                      64                    134                    25
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Austria                  60                    128                    23
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Norway                   53                     98                    19
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Russia                   33                     82                    22
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------


    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Canadian medal comparisons per Olympic Winter Games
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                        1994      1998       2002       2006
                                         OWG       OWG        OWG        OWG
                                      Medals    Medals     Medals     Medals
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Alpine                                 1                               0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Biathlon                               2 	                            0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Bobsleigh 	                                      1                     1
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Cross-Country                                               1
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Curling 	                                      2          2          2
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Freestyle                              3                 	 2          2
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Hockey                                 1         1          2          1
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Luge                                                                   0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Nordic Combined                                                        0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Skeleton                                                               3
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ski Cross                                                              -
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ski Jump                                                               0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Snowboard                                        1                     1
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Speedskating - ST                      3         4          6          4
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Speedskating - LT                      1         5          3          8
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Total                                 13        15         17         24
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    OWG - Olympic Winter Games
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------


    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
           Canadian medal comparisons per Paralympic Winter Games
       (*)No. of gold medals for each sport included as IPC nations rankings
                     are measured by No. of gold medals
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                    1994        1998        2002        2006
                                     PWG         PWG         PWG         PWG
                                  Medals      Medals      Medals      Medals
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                     7          12          12           5
    Para-alpine                  (1 gold)    (1 gold)    (4 gold)    (1 gold)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                           - 3           6
    Para-Nordic (cross country)      0           2       (2 gold)    (2 gold)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Sledge Hockey                    1           1           0       1 (gold)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Wheelchair Curling (*)made
     debut in 2006                   -           -           -       1 (gold)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                     8          15          15          13
    Total                        (1 gold)    (1 gold)    (6 gold)    (5 gold)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    PWG - Paralympic Winter Games
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Remaining world cup events in Canada for the 2007-2008 winter season :

    Freestyle Skiing World Cup             January 26-27 in Mont Gabriel, QC
    Cross Country Skiing World Cup              January 21-27 in Canmore, AB
    Short Track Speed Skating World Cup      February 1-4 in Quebec City, QC
    Freestyle Skiing World Cup                February 9-10 in Vancouver, BC
    Alpine Skiing World Cup                   February 18-24 in Whistler, BC
    Snowboard World Cup                             March 1-2 in Calgary, AB
    Snowboard World Cup                            March 7-9 in Stoneham, QC
    Curling World Championship                     March 21-30 in Vernon, BC
    

    For complete results on Canadian winter athlete performances or for the
2007-2008 winter season calendar of events visit the Own the Podium 2010
website at www.ownthepodium2010.com.
    Own the Podium 2010 (OTP) is a winter sport technical initiative designed
to help Canada become the number one nation at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games
(total medal count) and to place among the top three nations (gold medal
count) at the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games. The initiative is a partnership of
Canada's 13 winter national sport organizations, the Canadian Olympic
Committee, the Canadian Paralympic Committee, Sport Canada and the Vancouver
Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC).
    One-half of the $110 million in funding, which began in 2005, originates
from the Government of Canada, through Sport Canada ($55 million). VANOC is
raising the other half ($55 million) through corporate and provincial support.
Bell Canada is the Founding Corporate Partner and the other Partners are
General Motors of Canada, Hbc, McDonald's Canada, Petro-Canada, RBC Financial
Group and RONA. The Government of British Columbia is the first province to
contribute to OTP.





For further information:

For further information: Lisette Johnson Stapley, Communications
Manager, Own the Podium 2010, Tel. (403) 202-6314, Mobile (403) 589-3258,
lisettestapley@ownthepodium2010.com, www.ownthepodium2010.com

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