Road To The Olympic Games

Track-field

Need to know: Andre De Grasse

Andre De Grasse is already fast, but he'll be the first to tell you he hasn't tested his limits yet, sparking lofty theories on how quick the Canadian could eventually be.

De Grasse's personal best of 9.92 seconds makes him the fastest active Canadian

Markham, Ont.'s Andre De Grasse is the highly-touted leader of Canadian men's sprinting. (Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

By Callum Ng, CBC Sports 

Blink and you might miss Andre De Grasse.

Heading into Rio, the 21-year-old is Canada's fastest man and one of the top sprinters on the planet ever since getting into the sport in the 12th grade.


Famous moment

The world woke up to De Grasse's unbelievable speed at NCAA Track and Field Championships in 2015 when he won both the 100-metres and 200 in the same night.

What's more, De Grasse did so with two blazing times of 9.75 seconds in the 100 and 19.58 in the 200. While the times didn't count as the tail-wind was over the allowable 2.0 m/s limit (called wind-aided), they were still awesome.

He said it...

  • "I feel like I haven't tested that limit where I can be really, really fast. You know, be able to break a world record or to be able to be the fastest man in the world and that's one of my goals today and I feel like once I accomplish that then I can say that I'm fast."
  • "To be honest, I feel like I haven't really accomplished being that fast yet. I know I've joined the sub-10 group...I'm only in a category with three other Canadians and that's Donovan Bailey and Bruny Surin." 


What they're saying about him...

"I don't know what Andre's limit is. He's magical. And if he's close, he's coming to get you." - sprint coach Tony Sharpe, who discovered De Grasse at Milliken Mills High School in Markham, Ont.

Strengths

He's fast. More specifically, De Grasse has that elusive ability to accelerate deeper into a race and hold his speed.

Just watch him win the 200 at a Diamond League event earlier this summer:


Weaknesses

The start. Remember, this is an athlete who has been running track for less than four years. He has been working on improving out of the blocks. 

Fun fact

De Grasse bought a Honda Accord when he signed his Puma deal in 2015, a reported 11.25 million-dollars. Modest, and not terribly fast. He is thinking about upgrading to a Tesla before long but is also trying to save his riches.

Born

De Grasse was born in Scarborough, Ont. but grew up in Markham, Ont.

Lives in

Spent much of this season training in Phoenix.

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