PENRITH, AUSTRALIA (February 24, 2020) – Michael Tayler (Ottawa, ON) will be headed to his third consecutive Olympic Games following a top Canadian finish in the men’s K1 slalom event at the 2020 Australian Open in Penrith this weekend.
“Thanks to everyone who has supported me over the years,” reflected Tayler. “I’m so proud to have another opportunity to represent Canada on the Olympic stage!”
Ben Hayward (Edmonton, AB) was also vying for Olympic selection in the men’s K1 event finishing 29th in the semi-finals, behind Tayler in 21st. Both Canadian kayakers have been in a tight battle for Olympic selection in a point-based, best two-out-of-three event qualification system.
Team Canada had previously qualified the men’s K1 boat for Tokyo 2020 at the 2019 World Slalom Championships in La Seu D’Urgell, Spain.
“Olympic selections always deliver high-pressure racing and I’m really proud of our team for embracing the challenge and performing when it counts in international competitions,” said James Cartwright, Senior High Performance Manager. “We now have three paddlers selected to Tokyo and we will be going to Brazil next month with an important job to compete for the last spot in women’s canoe.”
In the women’s C1 event, Haley Daniels (Calgary, AB) finished top Canadian in 21st position overall, moving her into a tie in overall points standings with Lois Betteridge (Ottawa, ON) in the women’s C1 Canadian Olympic selection process. Lois Betteridge finished 27th and will also look to the next qualification event that will be held at the Olympic whitewater park in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on April 3-5 to contest for the women’s C1 Olympic entry.
Other notable Canadian results include Florence Maheu (Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, QC) placing 26th in the women’s K1 event and Cameron Smedley (Ottawa, ON) finishing 30th in men’s C1.
The next Tokyo qualification opportunity to take place at the 2020 Pan-Am Championships scheduled in Rio de Janeiro from April 3-5, 2020.
Visit the event website and results here.
To view Canada’s Tokyo 2020 Olympic Team Criteria, click here.
photo credits: JRG images