Meet the Canadians leading the Summer Universiade medal charge
276 Canucks will compete in largest multi-sport event outside of Olympics
The 29th Summer Universiade is almost here.
Not familiar with the international sporting event? Here's what you need to know and who you should watch.
What is it?
Held every two years, the Summer Universiade is the world's largest multi-sport event outside of the Olympic Games. It's governed by the International University Sports Federation (FISU) and is also known as the World University Games or the World Student Games.
When and where is it?
This year's edition will be held from August 19-30 in Taipei City, the capital of Taiwan.
Taipei City will host more than 7,600 athletes from 131 nations competing in 275 events.
The term "Universiade" is derived from the words "university" and "Olympiade." Thus, the Games are open to current student-athletes and those who haven't been out of school for more than a year. Athletes must be between the ages of 17 and 25, but there are exceptions in place until 2018 that allow people up to 28 years old to compete.
What about Team Canada?
Canada will send a team of 276 athletes to compete in hopes of developing the next wave of Olympians.
At the Rio Olympics last summer, 56 former Universiade participants competed for Canada and came away with nine medals.
Two years ago, Canada finished 21st in the medal standings at the Summer Universiade in Gwangju, South Korea with two golds, four silvers, and two bronze for a total of eight medals.
Here are some of the top Canadians to keep an eye on in Taipei City:
Fresh off making Canadian history at her first track and field world championships, Crew heads to Taipei City as one of the favourites — if she isn't already the favourite — in the women's shot put competition.
The 23-year-old became the first female Canuck to finish in the top eight of the event at worlds after throwing 18.21 metres in the final to finish sixth.
As a York Lion, Crew won back-to-back U Sports championships in 2015 and 2016, setting a national university record throw of 16.96m in the latter.
Considering Crew's recent form, she looks poised to improve on the bronze medal she won two years ago in the last Summer Universiade.
One of Canada's most decorated gymnasts, Black leads the Canadian women's artistic team into the Summer Universiade,
Black won a silver medal in the floor exercise and bronze in the balance beam event at the 2013 Universiade in Kazan, Russia.
The Halifax native's breakthrough performance came at the 2015 Pan Am Games, where she won five medals — three of which were gold.
The 21-year-old has represented Canada at two Olympic Games and, while she doesn't have an Olympic medal, her fifth-place finish in the women's individual all-around competition at Rio 2016 is the best ever result for a Canadian in that event.
These Games should serve as good preparation for the upcoming world championships in October in Montreal.
While Thormeyer is just 19 years old, he's as battle-tested as they come, having competed at the highest levels of international swimming.
In recent years, the Delta B.C., native has been a stalwart on the men's 4x100-metre relay team, contributing to a bronze-medal performance at the 2015 Pan Am Games and seventh- and eighth-place finishes at the Rio Olympics and this year's world championships.
He's also had his share of success individually, winning the 200 free and finishing as the runner-up in the 100 free and 100 backstroke at the Canadian swimming trials last April.
Roy-Petitclerc is a key member of Canada's women's soccer team for the Summer Universiade, which will be looking to build on its fourth-place finish from two years ago.
With 10 returning members, the team will be one of the nation's best medal hopes.
Roy-Petitclerc, from St. Nicolas, Que., is the reigning BLG Award winner as U Sports' top female athlete of the year.
CUSN Female Athlete of the Year Nominee #3: Arielle Roy-Petitclerc of <a href="https://twitter.com/rougeetor">@rougeetor</a>. Head to <a href="https://t.co/vfKpMRVDtW">https://t.co/vfKpMRVDtW</a> to vote for her! <a href="https://t.co/dK5LvkvLbC">pic.twitter.com/dK5LvkvLbC</a>—@CUSNetwork
This past season at Laval University, Roy-Petitclerc was the team captain and the engine of the offence, scoring 10 times and adding eight assists to finish tied for first in conference scoring.The Rouge et Or went on to win their second national championship in three years.
Despite only getting into basketball in the ninth grade, Bongomin quickly made her way onto the national radar.
The 19-year-old was a force on the glass, averaging six rebounds in just 16 minutes per game to help Team Saskatchewan earn a bronze medal two years ago at the U17 nationals.
She made her national team debut on the junior women's team at last year's U18 FIBA Americas, winning a silver medal and contributed to Canada's historic bronze-medal run at the FIBA U19 World Cup.
Bongomin is part of the 12-member developmental national team Canada is sending to the Summer Universiade.