OTTAWA, Jan. 24, 2018 /CNW/ - Commonwealth Games Canada and Cycling Canada announced today the nine women and nine men who will represent Canada in the cycling events at the XXI Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, on April 5-14, 2018.
Canadian cyclists have a long tradition of medal-winning performances at the Commonwealth Games, including three medals at the Glasgow Games in 2014. At the Gold Coast Games, athletes will compete in Track, Mountain Bike and Road cycling events.
"The Commonwealth Games is a really special event," said Team Leader for cycling Kris Westwood. "On the one hand it's a highly competitive event that gives our veteran athletes a shot at career highlight performances; on the other hand it's an opportunity to give valuable major Games experience to our future Olympians -- this will be the first Games experience for nearly half our delegation. In track cycling, with Australia, Great Britain and New Zealand competing, the field will be world-class, so it's really exciting to return to the Commonwealth Games and see the progress we've made since Glasgow in 2014. Four years ago, the men's Team Pursuit program was just getting off the ground; now, we're heading to the Games with a seasoned, competitive squad. Meanwhile, the addition of the women's Team Pursuit to the program gives us an event to shine in, and we can expect strong results in Mountain Bike as well."
The cycling competitions will begin with the Track events, where a total of 20 gold medals will be awarded. The Team Pursuit and Team Sprint are new additions to the Games program for women and for the first time in Games history there will be the same number of cycling medal events for men as for women. Canada is particularly strong in the women's Team Pursuit, winning bronze medals at the past two Olympic Games, as well as a gold medal in World Cup competition this season. The team will be anchored by Calgary's Allison Beveridge, a member of the World Cup winning squad, as well as the reigning national road champion. The men's program, while much newer, finished second to the world champion New Zealand squad in World Cup competition this season.
"I'm really looking forward to my first Commonwealth Games," said Beveridge. "The Games are quite close to the world championships, which are always a major goal and will provide some challenges, but preparation for both are coming along well and the team is getting closer on and off the bike. It's a good mix of events with the Team Pursuit now in the Games for women, so it'll be a lot of fun to prepare for. Hopefully, the team will also be able to have some individual strengths shine through in the various events."
"I'm thrilled with our Games team line up," said Women's Track Endurance Coach Craig Griffin. "It's a great balance of youth in Ariane [Bonhomme] and Kinley [Gibson], and experience with Steph [Roorda], Allison [Beveridge] and Annie [Foreman-Mackey]. These Games provide an important opportunity to embrace and experience a major Games environment as we continue to build and strengthen our squad for Tokyo. I'm confident we can deliver medal winning performances on the track and also be in the mix for the road events."
The Sprint events on the track will see Canada boast two World Cup medalists; Hugo Barrette of Iles-de-la-Madeleine, Quebec, and Stefan Ritter of Edmonton.
Canada has been a dominant force in Mountain Biking at the Commonwealth Games since it was introduced at Manchester in 2002; having won every gold medal in the women's competition and a total of 8 of 18 medals awarded. Three Canadian riders will represent Canada at the Gold Coast, led by Emily Batty of Brooklin, Ontario, the silver medalist at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, Pan Am Games champion in 2015 and fourth at the Rio Olympics in 2016. Batty will be joined by rising star Haley Smith of Uxbridge, Ontario, for the women's race, and Rio Olympian Leandre Bouchard of Alma, Quebec, for the men's competition.
Emily Batty, currently at a pre-season training camp with the national team, said "With the 2018 race season looming on the horizon, I come into the season with new motivation, and the Commonwealth Games will be a great race to begin with. I've made some major changes this year, and it will be interesting to see how some of those changes translate to racing and, in particular, a significant Games event. To represent Canada on the international stage is an absolute honour as always, and one I will never take for granted."
The Road events will close out the cycling competition, with the track endurance athletes filling the roster for the women's and men's road races and time trials.
"Whether it's on the road, on the velodrome track, or down the mountain, the fast-paced sport of cycling is always captivating," said Chef de Mission Claire Carver-Dias. "With three medals four years ago, and a returning medalist in Emily Batty on the team, our 18 Canadian athletes are bound to contend for top spots at the Commonwealth Games once again in Gold Coast."
Women's Track Endurance & Road
Allison Beveridge - Calgary, Alberta [Team Pursuit, Road Race]
Ariane Bonhomme - Gatineau, Quebec [Team Pursuit, Road Race]
Annie Foreman-Mackey - Kingston, Ontario [Team Pursuit, Individual Time Trial, Road Race]
Kinley Gibson - Edmonton, Alberta [Team Pursuit, Road Race]
Stephanie Roorda - Vancouver, BC [Team Pursuit, Individual Time Trial, Road Race]
Alternate: Devaney Collier - Edmonton, Alberta
Men's Track Endurance & Road
Aidan Caves - Vancouver, BC [Team Pursuit, Road Race]
Michael Foley - Milton, Ontario [Team Pursuit, Road Race]
Derek Gee - Ottawa, Ontario [Team Pursuit, Individual Time Trial, Road Race]
Adam Jamieson - Barrie, Ontario [Team Pursuit, Individual Time Trial, Road Race]
Jay Lamoureux - Victoria, BC [Team Pursuit, Individual Time Trial, Road Race]
Alternate: Bayley Simpson - Lindsay, Ontario
Tegan Cochrane - Kelowna, BC
Amelia Walsh - Ayr, Ontario
Alternate: Lauriane Genest - Levis, Quebec
Hugo Barrette – Iles-de-la-Madeleine, QC
Stefan Ritter - Edmonton, Alberta
Patrice St-Louis Pivin - Sherbrooke, Quebec
Alternate: Joel Archambault - St-Christine, Quebec
Women's Mountain Bike
Emily Batty - Brooklin, Ontario
Haley Smith - Uxbridge, Ontario
Alternate: Sandra Walter - Coquitlam, BC
Men's Mountain Bike
Leandre Bouchard - Alma, Quebec
Alternate: Peter Disera - Horseshoe Valley, Ontario
ABOUT COMMONWEALTH GAMES CANADA
Commonwealth Games Canada (CGC) is the international franchise holder for the Commonwealth Games and Commonwealth movement in Canada, and an active, contributing member of the Canadian sport community. The mission of CGC is to strengthen sport within Canada and throughout the Commonwealth by participating in the Commonwealth Games and by using sport as a development tool. Visit www.commonwealthgames.ca for information.
ABOUT CYCLING CANADA
Cycling Canada is the governing body for competitive cycling in Canada. Founded in 1882, Cycling Canada aims to create and sustain an effective system that develops talented Canadian cyclists to achieve Olympic, Paralympic, and World Championship medal performances. With the vision of being a leading competitive cycling nation by 2020 celebrating enhanced international success, increased national participation and world class event hosting, Cycling Canada manages the High Performance team, hosts national and international events and administers programs to promote and grow cycling across the country. Cycling Canada programs are made possible through the support of its valued corporate partners – Global Relay, Lexus Canada, Mattamy Homes, Louis Garneau and Bear Mountain Resort – along with the Government of Canada, Own The Podium, the Canadian Olympic Committee and the Canadian Paralympic Committee.
Our thanks to Cision for sponsoring this announcement
SOURCE Commonwealth Games Association of Canada
For further information: about Cycling Canada, Karine Bedard, Marketing & Communication Coordinator, Cycling Canada,(438) 884-8771, [email protected]; For additional information on the Gold Coast 2018 Canadian Team or CGC: Sylvie Bigras, Communications Chief, Team Canada - Gold Coast 2018, (613) 298-1625, [email protected]