Susan Nuttrass leads Team Canada out in the Opening Ceremony – Pics Courtesy of Andy Laing/ISN
July 23 2014, (ISN) – In June 2014 Commonwealth Games Canada announced that seven time world champion Susan Nuttrass would have the honour of being the Team Canada flag bearer in Glasgow tonight. As well as being multiple world champion, Dr. Nuttrass is a six-time Olympian and has previously geld the world record in Women’s Trapshooting from 1974 – 1989, and the Double Trap in 1993.
When the announcement was made, Team Canada Chef de Mission Chantal Petitclerc pointed out Dr. Nuttrass unique qualities as a pioneer in the shooting disciplines. Dr. Nuttrass was the first woman to compete in an Olympic trap shooting event in Montreal in 1976 and in the 1990 Commonwealth Games in Auckland when she was the only woman in an all-man competition. Susan pursued the addition of women’s shotgun events in the Commonwealth Games, leading to the Manchester 2002 Games being the first Commonwealth Games this event. The IOC has also been on the receiving end of her considerable influence with Susan pushing for the re-introduction of women’s trap and skeet events after they were barred after the 1992 Games, they were finally reintroduced in 2000 in Sydney.
When asked about her new role as flag bearer, Susan said “I’m ecstatic; its such a tremendous honour to have been selected as Canada’s Flag bearer in Glasgow.” The Canada Sports Hall of Famer described the athletes from the 2014 Team Canada as “exceptional athletes” – surely high praise from such a well regarded competitor.
At 63, Nuttrass believes this will be her last Commonwealth Games – she makes what she calls “silly little mistakes” these days that she blames on age. Looking forward though, Nuttrass plans to qualify for Rio 2016 although she has said that if she doesn’t qualify she will likely hang up her shooting gloves (although Cynthia Meyer, also of Team Canada, doubts that she will) but she is determined to stay involved in the sport she has loved and helped shape over the last 40 years.
In 2007 Susan was flag bearer during the opening ceremony of the Pan American Games in Rio, winning gold on that occasion. As Susan says, “I still have Rio imprinted in my mind, carrying the flag, that was so cool.”
Hopefully history will repeat itself and being flag bearer will give Susan a gold in her last Commonwealth Games, and Glasgow will give Susan another experience she’ll never forget!