It was a historic moment for Hornblower Niagara Cruises when the the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and Wrestling Canada Lutte announced their eight athletes to represent Canada in the Rio 2016 Olympics from August 5 – August 21, 2016.
The event kicked off under the stunning Private Event Tent at 10am with the official team announcement and Team Canada jacket unveiling. Carol Huynh, Rio 2016 Team Canada Assistant Chef de Mission and two-time Olympic medallist in Wrestling announced the team as each athlete took to the stage. The Canadian Wrestling Team is made up of 6 women and 2 men. The ladies have even been coined the name of real Canadian #sixpack by fellow Olympian and multiple medalist Clara Hughes. The women are enthusiastic to show Canada and the World the next generation of women’s wrestling. The team includes Jasmine Mian, Jillian Gallays, Michelle Fazzari, Danielle Lappage, Dorothy Yeats, Erica Wiebe, Korey Jarvis, and two-time Olympian Haislan Garcia. The athletes will represent their home cities from across Canada including Barrie, Elliot Lake, Stittsvilles and Caledonia, Ontario, Saskatoon, Olds, Alberta, Montreal, Quebec and Coquitlam, British Columbia.
While many of the freestyle wrestlers are medal contenders it is Erica Wiebe who they are predicting will take to the podium in Rio. Erica took home gold in the 2014 Commonwealth Games and 2015 Yarygin Grand Prix. During the event on Wednesday, previous Canadian olympic medalists joined the crowds including local Grimsby native, Tonya Verbeek who represented Canada in the 2004 Athens Olympics, 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2012 London Olympics. For the last six Summer Games, Team Canada has reached the podium in wrestling adding to the county’s haul of 16 summer olympic medals. This team of 8 will join 315 other athletes to represent Canada in August.
With the Olympics only 43 days away the team has currently been training at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario, only a short 15 minutes from Hornblower NIagara Cruises. The training includes on-matt and off-mat with international training partners from the United States, Finland, Latvia and Estonia. The significance of the camp marks the last time the entire team will be together before they travel together to Rio de Janeiro.
“Our wrestlers heading to Rio have fought hard for their opportunity to represent wrestling and Canada on the largest stage. With a Canadian wrestler represented in all women’s weight classes, the #sixpack is shooting for the best team performance in the history of our women’s program and we anticipate best performances by our men,” said Carol Huynh, 2016 Team Canada Chef de Mission, and two time Olympic medalist.
After the morning ceremony, athletes conducted one-on-one interviews as the beautiful Falls roared in the background. Shortly after, athletes, family members, and committee members headed to the boats to experience our daytime Voyage To The Falls boat tour. The team was enthusiastic to visit Hornblower Niagara Cruises located in a world famous destination. As the team continues their training and journey before the games they will remember Hornblower Niagara Cruises as a unique Canadian experience with an incredible venue with a view.
Be sure to tune in and watch Team Canada compete at the 2016 Rio Olympics between August 14 – August 21 at the olympic Training Centre in Barra Zone.
“They have fire in their heartS and ice in their veins’
To view images of the event visit our Flickr page.