Bronze Medal for Canada - Pan Am Games
Saturday, July 18 2015
Toronto, ON –– Bronze Medal for Canada - Pan Am Games
Lee Parkhill claims the bronze medal in the Laser class today at the 2015 Pan Am Games.
It was a hot start to the medal races in Toronto Harbour with Radial fleets off the line in light breeze at 1135am followed by the Laser fleets at 1235pm. Hundreds of spectators came out to watch the racing along with the barrage of fans onshore at the urban Sugar Beach.
Brenda Bowskill was first out of the gate with the Radial fleet sailing to a 5th place finish, rounding out her Pan Am event in 8th overall. Paige Railey (USA) secured gold followed by Demetrio (BRA) and Moreira (URU) in 3rd. Bowskill stayed out on course to cheer for her teammate Lee Parkhill. I’m super proud of my teammate. The spectators were amazing.”
The top eight Laser sailors made their way to the line with a 1235 start. After the gun, Lee led at the top mark finding some love on the right side of the track. The second windward leg was a full on dog fight, the with Lee responding in style, fending off challenges and choosing to consolidate the bronze medal versus risk everything. “We got the best breeze of the day”, says Parkhill. “I like the lighter winds and definitely played in my favour. My main focus was to position myself ahead of Charlie (Buckingham) and hold that line until the end.” Juan Mageli (GUA) took the gold, Robert Scheidt (BRA) in silver and Canadian Lee Parkhill (RCYC) bronze. This Bronze medal marks the first Medal for Canada at the Olympics or Pan Am Games since the Laser became an Olympic class in 1996.
“It’s an incredible feeling to win on home soil,” Parkhill exclaims. “I have a ton of family on Sugar Beach and I got to do a fly by with the Canadian flag. My mom, dad and wife were out on the water everyday, rain or shine. I had other supporters who also came out to support me, taking vacation time to come watch me sail makes me feel pretty good.”
Parkhill will take a few days to soak in the PanAmania and then switch focus to his next task at hand - Qualifying for Rio 2016. “The outcome of this event means I’m on form and gives me the confidence to go toe to toe with the best in the world. I’m excited for Rio and will switch my focus to qualifying for 2016.”
The medal course area is tucked up against the Toronto waterfront in close viewing distance to the newly minted Sugar Beach with live commentary and media coverage. Tentative start time for the is 1135am, Lightning, 1230 pm Sunfish, Hobie 16 1355, Snipe 1505 and J24 at 1635. Medal Ceremonies are scheduled immediately post racing on Sugar Beach.
RSX and FX fleets were held onshore until 5pm when enough breeze filled in to get them out for their final races of the event. Canadian Zac Plavsic finished 4th on the day and 5th overall.
For Sunday’s medal racing, Canada will be well represented in all Pan Am fleets with Luke Ramsay leading the Sunfish class, and McLaughlin/Andrews/Jarvis/Ogden in 2nd place in the J24. Canadian Hobie team Borg/Giovando are also in contention for a medal in 4th.
Medal racing for Olympic classes will be held tomorrow starting at 1135am. Follow the action https://twitter.com/PanSail_Medal and your headquarters for Canadian action @SailCanada.
Canadian Unofficial Results – Day 7
Laser: Lee Parkhill – BRONZE medal
RSX:M : Zac Plavsic – 5th
Radial: Brenda Bowskill – 8th
RS:W: Nikola Girke - 6th
49erFX: Rafuse/Boyd - 6th
Sunfish: Luke Ramsay – 1st – Medal Race Sunday
J24 - T McLaughlin/Jarvis/Ogden/Andrews – 2nd – Medal Race Sunday
Snipe - E McLaughlin/Strnad - 5th – Medal Race Sunday
Hobie 16: Borg/Giovando - 4th – Medal Race Sunday
Lightning - Allen/Deakin/Leger - 5th – Medal Race Sunday