Road To The Olympic Games

Olympics Summer

Canadians to watch

Athlete Profiles posted to site

These athletes are at the top of their game and bound for Beijing

Tyler Christopher, a world-class Canadian runner, won the 2008 International Association of Athletics Federations world indoor 400-metre title in March with a stunning come-from-behind performance. Christopher knew that if he wanted to be successful, he’d have to move to Edmonton to train. It wasn’t an easy transition because he was broke, hungry and sleepless in Edmonton.

Men's 400 metre final: Day 13, Thursday, August 21, 08:55 EDT

The 26-year-old native of Victoria, B.C., raced to a silver medal at the 2007 IAAF World Championships in Osaka, Japan. He came within one one-hundredth of a second of winning the gold. Only a late surge from Kenya’s Alfred Yego deprived him of the top prize, though the way Reed celebrated it was difficult to tell which athlete was happier.

Men's 800 metre final: Day 15, Saturday, August 23, 07:30 EDT

Canada's Karen Cockburn has won two Olympic medals, a silver and a bronze, and she's aiming for gold this summer in Beijing. In addition to her two Olympic medals from Athens and Sydney, she's a 10-time Canadian national champion and has won gold at the 2003 World Championships, 2006 World Cup and 2007 Pan Am Games.

Women's trampoline final: Day 10, Monday, August 18, 08:25 EDT

Despair initially consumed Despatie when doctors told him that he broke the long bone connecting to his little toe early in April. Aside from his injured foot, Despatie will have to deal with a dominant Chinese team and a partisan Beijing crowd if he hopes to add more Olympic medals to his impressive resume.

Men's 3-metre springboard final: Day 11, Tuesday, August 19, 08:30 EDT

Men's 3-metre synchronized final: Day 5, Wednesday, August 13, 02:30 EDT

From the moment he captured gold at the 2007 world aquatics championships in Melbourne, Hayden has been billed as the only Canadian swimmer with a legitimate chance to earn an individual medal in Beijing. He is also a podium threat with the rest of the men's 4 x 200-metre freestyle team.

Men's 200-metre freestyle final: Day 3, Monday, August 11, 22:13 EDT

Men's 4 x 100-metre freestyle relay final: Day 2, Sunday, August 10, 23:33 EDT

Men's 4 x 200-metre freestyle relay final: Day 4, Tuesday, August 12, 23:16 EDT

Men's 100-metre freestyle final: Day 5, Wednesday, August 13, 22:46 EDT

This year alone, that determination has taken the Vancouver native to more than 20 countries to compete in 22 tournaments. She's number one in Canada, which secures her ticket to Beijing. Canada has never won a medal in badminton, but Rice, who has defeated three opponents in the top 10, hopes to change that.

Badminton women's final: Day 7, Friday, August 15, 22:00 EDT

Four years after ending a two-year winning streak on the Olympic stage, Canada is back. World champions, number one in the world and undefeated in 2008, the Canucks are the boat to beat at the Beijing Olympic Games. With seven experienced Olympians in the Canadian boat, the veteran coach is the first to express what he expects of his crew. "A win of course," he deadpans. "Anything else will be disappointing."

Men's 8 rowing final: Day 9, Sunday, August 17, 05:30 EDT

Whitfield is in fine form at the moment. He has put his disappointing 11th place finish at the 2004 Athens Games behind him — he made a costly tactical error in the cycling segment of the event — and is running faster now than he was eight years ago. "I don’t want to be left behind in Beijing," he says about the Summer Games.

Men's triathlon: Day 10, Monday, August 18, 22:00 EDT

Cools, a racing prodigy since the age of three, had been competing for two years in the women's elite level under the tutelage of national team coach Tanya Dubnicoff. The results failed to meet Cools' lofty expectations, particularly with her confidence soaring after dominating the junior circuit by winning five world titles.

Women's BMX final: Day 12, Wednesday, August 20, 21:30 EDT

For most Canadians, Lamaze is better known for his faults away from the show jumping ring than the faults he compiles in it. But after more than a decade marked by turmoil, Lamaze not only ranks among the world’s best equestrians, he stands a good chance of bringing Canada its first individual Olympic medal in the sport since 1976.

Indivdual jumping final: Day 4, Tuesday, August 12, 10:45 EDT

Team jumping final: Day 4, Tuesday, August 12, 07:15 EDT

Zelinka, of London, Ont., won the 2007 Pan American games gold medal but her greatest achievement came in the annual IAAF World Combined Events Challenge in Gotzis, Austria, in May 2007. She finished fourth there, setting a Canadian record of 6,343 points.

Women's heptathlon final: Day 8, Saturday, August 16, 09:45 EDT

A sixth place finish at the 2004 Athens Olympics and an eighth place at the 2007 IAAF World Championships in Osaka last August have carved her a strong position in the competitive women’s hurdles event. Her progression, on paper at least, points to another breakthrough.

Women's 100-metre hurdles final: Day 11, Tuesday, August 19, 10:30 EDT

Four years ago, Sergerie was the Canadian lightweight taekwondo champion and world silver medallist, but it wasn’t enough to earn a ticket to Athens. Now, not only is the 23-year-old going to the Games, she’s the gold medal favourite. Sergerie is the world champion and has lost only one major international tournament in the past two years.

Women's 67 kg final: Day 14, Friday, August 22, 08:00 EDT

A reigning Olympic champion coming back from a gruesome injury, his comeback is the biggest Canadian story of the Games. In a training mishap before the world championships in Germany last summer, Shewfelt suffered two broken legs and ligament damage. He has also been dealing with upheaval in his personal life, and is considered a long shot to win another gold.

Men's team final: Day 2, Sunday, August 10, 22:00 EDT

Men's individual all around final: Day 5, Wednesday, August 13, 23:00 EDT

Men's individual apparatus final: Day 9, Sunday, August 17, floor final 06:00 EDT

Van Koeverden’s mother, Beata, once told a Toronto newspaper that kayaking was the first sport Adam tried in which the effort he put in equaled the gain he got out of it. Her son, she explained, "is not a natural athlete." He couldn’t agree more.

Men's K1 1000 metre final: Day 14, Friday, August 22, 03:30 EDT

Men's K1 500 metre final: Day 15, Saturday, August 23, 03:30 EDT

Hammer throwers are the poor cousins of track and field. Jim Steacy knew this when he chose the hammer over the shot put and discus throw as his main event three years ago. Practicing due diligence has paid off, however, and he will have the last laugh.

Men's hammer throw final: Day 9, Sunday, August 17, 07:10 EDT

Giuseppe Di Salvatore was seven years old when his dad convinced him to shoot a gun for the first time. He had tagged along on a trip to the Vancouver Gun Club and found himself scared, gun in hand, uncertainly taking aim. A long line of Di Salvatore hunters and shooters came before him, including his great grandfather, his grandfather, and his dad Tony. It is family tradition.

Men's trap shooting final: Day 1, Saturday, August 9, 21:00 EDT 

At age 57, Canada’s top female trap shooter is gearing up for her sixth Olympic Games. More than 30 years have passed since Nattrass took the line at the Montreal Games in 1976 to become the first female shooter in Olympic history. Now looking at the field, Nattrass sees more than 100 women where she used to see none.

Women's trap final: Day 3, Monday, August 11, 03:00 EDT

Twelve years have passed since Donovan Bailey won the Atlanta Olympic 100m gold medal in world record time, then anchored Canada’s sprint relay team to victory. Those were glory days indeed.Now for the first time in ages Canadians have reason for optimism within the sprint program.

Men's 4x100-metre relay final: Day 14, Friday, August 22, 10:10 EDT

Canadian pole vaulter Kelsie Hendry finally appears to be Beijing bound. The Saskatoon native cleared a Canadian-record height of 4.55 metres in Provo, Utah, last month but Athletics Canada refused to accept the mark as either a record or for Olympic qualifying purposes. On June 14, Hendry cleared 4.55 metres again.

Women's pole vault final: Day 10, Monday, August 18, 07:20 EDT

With a Canadian record throw of 20.92m in Belgrade on May 29 Dylan Armstrong established his credentials as an outside medal possibility in the men’s Olympic shot put competition. The mark eclipsed his own national standard of 20.87 but more importantly demonstrated a remarkable progression that athletes need at the highest level.

Men's shot put final: Day 7, Friday, August 15, 09:00 EDT

Edmonton's Tim Berrett is Beijing bound and when he lines up for the men's 50km race walk it will be the fifth consecutive time he has represented Canada at an Olympic Games. He has also worn this country's colours at a record nine IAAF world championships. Where does the motivation come from at his age?

Men's 50km walk final: Day 13, Thursday, August 21, 19:30 EDT

Lassen holds six Canadian senior records and is expected to make the podium at most international events. She has won medals at Commonwealth Games, Pan-Am Games, university world championships and senior world championships. The McGill University grad will take the stage for Canada at the Beijing Games in August as a strong medal contender in the 75kg weight class.

Women's 75kg group B: Day 7, Friday, August 15, 00:30 EDT

Women's 75kg group A: Day 7, Friday, August 15, 03:30 EDT

In eight Olympic appearances, Millar, 61, has never stood on the podium. When he rode Big Ben he was part of Canadian teams that placed fourth on two occasions – 1984 in Los Angeles, 1988 in Seoul. He had the taste of only an unofficial Olympic medal in 1980, when alternate Olympic equestrian events were held in Rotterdam because the world boycotted Moscow.

Indivdual jumping final: Day 4, Tuesday, August 12, 10:45 EDT

Team jumping final: Day 4, Tuesday, August 12, 07:15 EDT

An unexpected setback derailed the Olympic aspirations of Heymans and partner Marie-Eve Marleau in the synchro competition. After both qualified for Beijing in the women's individual platform the day before, the pair were upended by a team they've never lost to. The loss stunned Heymans.

Women's 10-metre platform final: Day 13, Thursday, August 21, 08:00 EDT

A few months shy of her 19th birthday, Hopfner-Hibbs is about to strike out on her own. She placed third on the balance beam at the 2006 world championships to become the first Canadian woman to win a medal at the prestigious event. Since then, she has won six World Cup medals. Now, just out of high school, she is preparing to perform with much of the world watching.

Women's individual all-around final: Day 6, Thursday, August 14, 23:15 EDT

The St Francis Xavier University graduate has no false aspirations. Achieving a top-20 finish in an event dominated by East African born runners representing Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda and even Bahrain and Qatar, is incredibly difficult, yet that is what he has planned. No Canadian male has made the Olympic 10,000m final since Bruce Kidd in the 1964 Olympics.

Men's 10,000-metre final: Day 9, Sunday, August 17, 10:45 EDT

Late night gas station patrons in Guelph, Ont., might soon look back on an Olympic moment they had a couple of years go when served by a young attendant named Taylor Milne. It was one of several jobs the 1,500-metre runner has endured to make ends meet. Milne lined up for the men's 1,500 at the Canadian championships in Windsor, Ont., intent on booking his ticket to Beijing. He poured it on over the final bend to win his first Canadian title in 3:38.03.

Men's 1500-metre final: Day 11, Tuesday, August 19, 10:50 EDT

Ten years ago, the Canadian men’s team would have been lucky to finish in the top 12 at an elite event. But times have changed. The team is the strongest it has ever been, and is poised to make its mark in Beijing. With several top gymnasts in their prime and more money coming in, the future looks bright for the team.

Men's team final: Day 3, Monday, August 11, 22:00 EDT

The scrappy second baseman is the most recognized member of Canada's Olympic team.  His professional career as a ball player is over, but he's back with the team because his passion for the Canadian team and his dream of an Olympic medal simply won't die.

First game:  Canada vs China, Day 5,  Wednesday, August 13, 23:30 EDT

He brings a wealth of experience to the Olympic squad, having also represented Canada at the 1985 world junior championships, 1986 world juniors, 1987 Pan-Am Games, 1987 Intercontinental Cup, 1988 world senior championship and 2006 World Baseball Classic. Also driving Cormier is the fact this could be the last time he and his fellow Canadians compete for the country's first Olympic baseball medal.

First game:  Canada vs China, Day 5,  Wednesday, August 13, 23:30 EDT

Bay Regula is one of the world’s top softball pitchers and is the undisputed ace of the Canadian staff. Although she won’t admit it, a significant part of the Canadian team’s medal hopes in Beijing are tied directly to her left arm. Despite her personal success, Bay Regula considers the team’s performance in Athens "disappointing."

Women's softball final: Day 13, Thursday, August 21, 06:30 EDT

McLeod is the starting keeper for Canada’s national squad. The team is making history as the first Canadian contingent to compete in the Games. There are two guarantees in Beijing for McLeod. First, the goalie will work harder than anyone else. Second, win or lose, she will cry, perhaps before the first game has even begun.

Women's soccer final: Day 13, Thursday, August 21, 09:00 EDT

For Mark Oldershaw of Burlington, Ont., dreaming of paddling his canoe in the Olympics came easily enough. Turning that dream into reality, however, involved navigating some choppy waters and overcoming some serious setbacks. Paddling in the Olympics is practically the family business for the Oldershaw clan.

Men's C1 500-metre final: Day 15, Saturday, August 23, 03:45 EDT

Grit and determination, two words that describe the men's field hockey team.  They are also words that illustrate how the Canadians made it to the Beijing Olympics.  They are ranked 15th in the world, which is the lowest of any team in the Olympics except for the host team from China.

Canada's first game:  Day 3, Monday, August 18, 06:30 EDT

Sinclair isn't just Canada's best women's soccer player, she's one of the finest in the world. The five-foot-nine striker had scored 92 goals in 122 international matches as of Aug. 1, and has twice been shortlisted for FIFA's world player of the year award. Now Sinclair leads Canada's first Olympic soccer team into Beijing.

Canada's first game: Wednesday, August 6, 04:45 EDT

The 30-year-old from Chateau-Richer, Que., is enjoying the best mountain bike season of her career since joining the Canadian national team eight years ago. Prémont leads the World Cup standings by 295 points over Germany. She has won three events this year and reached the podium in all eight World Cup races.

Women's cross country: Day 14, Friday, August 22, 03:00 EDT