VICTORIA (ISN) – British Columbia-connected athletes excelled at the London 2012 Olympic Summer Games. They brought in half of the nation’s total medal haul and substantially increased the percentage of medals won by B.C-connected athletes.
Of Canada’s 18 medals, athletes who are either from B.C., or train in the province, earned nine, including six bronze and three silver. At the Beijing 2008 Olympic Summer Games, B.C. athletes won 39 per cent of Canadian medals. At the Athens 2004 Olympic Summer Games, B.C. won 25 per cent, and at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Summer Games, B.C. earned 21 per cent of Canada’s total medal count.
“B.C. athletes were simply spectacular at the London Games, winning 50 per cent of Canada’s total medal haul” noted Ida Chong, BC’s Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development. “Our athletes’ success has firmly established British Columbia as an ideal location for training and has impressed and inspired an entire province. In addition, many athletes achieved new personal bests. On behalf of Premier Christy Clark and the B.C. government, I congratulate you all.”
B.C.’s medal winners were (in chronological order of achievement):
- Christine Girard, White Rock (Rouyn-Norand, Que.) – weighlifting – women’s 63-kg – bronze.
- Men’s eight rowing team – silver.
- Brent Hayden, Vancouver (Mission) – swimming – men’s 100-metre freestyle – bronze.
- Women’s eight rowing team – silver.
- Ryan Cochrane, Victoria – swimming – men’s 1,500-metre freestyle – silver.
- Women’s team pursuit – cycling, track – bronze.
- Carol Huynh, Hazelton – wrestling – women’s 48-kg freestyle – bronze.
- Women’s soccer team – bronze.
- Richard Weinberger, Victoria (Surrey) – swimming – open water 10-km – bronze.
B.C. sent 110 athletes to the Games to compete in 22 sports. The British Columbia contingent accounted for 40 per cent of the Canadian Olympic Team. Of those athletes, 67 were born and raised in B.C.; the other 43 received substantial training and support through the B.C. sport system.
B.C. also sent 52 coaches, officials, technical staff, and medical and support team members to the Games.
B.C. soccer star Christine Sinclair, who captured the hearts of Canadians during the Games, represented Canada as flag-bearer for the closing ceremony. Victoria’s Simon Whitfield did the honours during the opening ceremony.
“B.C.-based athletes performed with courage, determination and pride at the London 2012 Olympic Summer Games” added Wendy Pattenden, CEO, Canadian Sport Centre Pacific. “I am proud of the CSC Pacific team of sport science professionals who work together with the athletes, coaches and our sport partners to help B.C.-based athletes bring home 50 per cent of Canada’s medals.”