Kingston, November 2, 2023 – Canadian sailing qualified an additional Olympic spot for Paris 2024, Thursday, at the Santiago 2023 Pan American Games, this time in Women’s Kiteboarding.
Following the presentation of the last preliminary races in this class on Thursday, Emily Bugeja from Vancouver, B.C., came up with sixth place. Even if she didn’t qualify for Friday’s final, she allowed Canada to earn a spot in Women’s Kiteboarding at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games by being the top finisher from the North American and Caribbean countries in the competition, except for the USA, who had already secured a spot at the 2023 Sailing World Championships.
At the Santiago 2023 Pan American Games, only the top four athletes following the preliminary races qualify for the medal race in Women’s Kiteboarding.
“I’m just really proud to have earned the spot for Canada, so that we can have the right to compete at Paris next year, and I’m very excited about the hard work that’s to come after getting the spot,” said Emily Bugeja.
“This competition had a lot of really tough conditions, some I’ve never seen or kited in before. I think those are probably the biggest waves that I’ve ever kited in, let alone raced in. But I’m proud of the improvements that I made over the course of the week and I have a long list of things to work on over the coming months.”
This is the second spot that Canada has secured for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games in sailing. In August, Sarah Douglas qualified Canada in the ILCA 6 event with her performance at the 2023 Sailing World Championships.
And now for the medal races
With the preliminary races ending in all classes on Thursday, except in Lightning, so far Canada has qualified for six medal races/series to be held on Friday and Saturday.
49erFX: Ali ten Hove from Kingston, ON, and Mariah Millen from Toronto, ON, are currently second overall, two points behind the Brazilian team and tied with the USA. The number of first positions through the competition is the tie-breaker, and is in favour of the Canadian team.
49er: Will Jones from Jerseyville, ON, and Justin Barnes from Pickering, ON, are back in third position after momentarily sliding in fourth on Wednesday. They are eight points behind Uruguay and second place, and three points ahead of Brazil.
Nacra 17: Madeline Gillis from Halifax, N.S., and Galen Richardson from Toronto, ON, are in fourth position following the preliminary races. The Canadian team has 46 points and is trailing third-place Brazil by 19 points.
Men’s Kiteboarding: Mac Morrin from Kingston, ON, will take part in the event’s medal series. He is currently in seventh position.
ILCA 6: Sarah Douglas from Toronto, ON, is second overall, 10 points behind Erika Reineke from the USA, and eight points ahead of Luciana Cardozo from Argentina. Canada has already secured a spot in this event for Paris.
Sunfish (non-Olympic event): Rio 2016 Olympian in Laser Lee Parkhill from Oakville, ON, is currently first overall, one point in front of Jean Paul de Trazegnies Valdez from Peru and two points ahead of Diego González Parro from Chile.
In Lightning (non-Olympic event), with two other preliminary races to go on Friday, the Canadian team comprised of Rachel Green (Burlington, ON), Jessica Hirschbold (Victoria, B.C.) and Luke Ramsay (Vancouver, B.C.) is sitting in third place, two points behind Chile in second place and two in front of Argentina in fourth position.
Fillah Karim from Vancouver, B.C., in ILCA 7, saw his competition come to end on Thursday with the end of the preliminary races.
How Canadian athletes will qualify themselves for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games
In the classes in which Canada will have spots for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, athletes and teams will be able to qualify themselves as per the following selection process:
The athlete/team with the lowest score combined position (for example, 1st+21st) from the 2024 World Championships in their respective classes and the 2024 Princess Sofia Regatta, added together, will be selected based on a sailing scoring system (lowest score first).
If there is a tie, the athlete/team in the higher position (based on the sailing scoring system) at the 2024 Princess Sofia Regatta will qualify to be nominated. If an event is cancelled, it will be replaced by the 2024 European Championships of the class.
Prior to being named to Team Canada, all nominations are subject to approval by the Canadian Olympic Committee’s Team Selection Committee after it has received nominations from all National Sport Organizations.
Canada’s next opportunity to qualify the country’s spots for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games will be:
-ILCA 7: 2024 ILCA 7 Men’s World Championship (January 2024 in Adelaide, Australia)
-Other classes: at the last chance regatta to be held at the 2024 French Olympic Week (April 2024 in Hyères, France)
Full qualification processes for countries to qualify spots at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, as well as for Canadians to qualify themselves to be nominated to the Paris 2024 Team Canada squad, are available at https://www.sailing.ca/sc_event/2024-olympic-games/.
About Sail Canada
Established in 1931, Sail Canada is the national governing body for the sport of sailing in the country. Sail Canada is a leading international sailing nation, proud of its world class athletes, lifelong participants and inclusive culture. The organization and its members are committed to excellence by developing and training its leaders, athletes, sailors, instructors, coaches and officials. With the valued support from our partners, the Provincial Sailing Associations and our member clubs, schools, organizations and stakeholders, sailing is promoted in all its forms. By setting standards and delivering programs from home pond to podium for Canadians of all ages and abilities, from dinghies to keelboats, cruising to navigation, windsurfing to powerboating and accessible sailing, Sail Canada sets sail for all, sail to win and sail for life.
A sport in the Olympic program since the first Games in 1896, except in 1904, the pursuit of success in these Games is what fuels the focus of Sail Canada as Canadian athletes have so far achieved nine Olympic and five Paralympic medals.