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Athlete Bio

Justin Barnes started sailing at age 9 at Frenchman’s Bay Yacht Club sailing school in his hometown of Pickering, Ontario, in 2000, and was immediately hooked. His Olympic dream was sparked when he was 13 after hearing former National Team Member and Olympian Bernard Luttmer talk about his 2004 Olympic campaign at FBYC’s sailing school. Justin joined the Royal Canadian Yacht Club (RCYC) High Performance Team while racing in the Laser class when he was 17, and has been a member of the club since.

Justin started in the 49er class in 2010 with teammate David Mori and qualified for the national team in January 2013. Beginning in 2013, Justin and David campaigned full time in the 49er class and had a series of successful events as a developing team, including a 10th place finish at the 2014 49er Junior World Championships in Aarhus, Denmark.

Following David’s retirement in Fall 2016, Justin began campaigning with Alex Heinzemann in January 2017. Alex and Justin won a bronze medal at the 2019 Pan American Games and qualified Canada a country berth for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. As Alex and Justin were pursuing Olympic qualification for Tokyo 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic forced the Olympic trials to be paused in March 2020, and amplified by a personal family matter, Justin stopped competing in April 2020.

Despite stepping away from competing in the 49er himself, Justin continued to stay engaged in the class by coaching developing 49er and 49erFX teams in Canada, including at the 2022 49er, 49erFX and Nacra 17 World Championships in Nova Scotia.

Following the retirement of Evan DePaul in Fall 2022, Will Jones approached Justin about sailing the World Sailing Championships Test Event in The Hague, Netherlands in October 2022. Following the event, Justin and Will agreed to continue competing together with the goal of representing Canada at the 2023 Pan American Games in Chile and the 2024 Olympic Games in France.

Justin Barnes is also a PhD in Global Governance candidate at the Balsillie School of International Affairs in Waterloo, Ontario. Justin’s research is focused on climate change adaptation and environmental governance in the Arctic.

Athlete Stats

HometownPickering, ON

Recent Results

2024 49er European Championship La Grande Motte, FRA 48 (with Will Jones)
2024 Princess Sofia Trophy Regatta Palma, SPA 35
2024 49er and 49erFX World Championships Lanzarote, SPA 39
2023 2023 Pan American Games Santiago, CHI BRONZE
2023 Sailing World Championships The Hague, NED 44
2023 French Olympic Week Hyères, FRA 23
2023 Princess Sofia Regatta Palma, SPA 56
2023 US Open Sailing Series Clearwater, U.S.A. 4
2023 US Open Sailing Series Miami, U.S.A. 9
2022 Portugal Grand Prix – Round 1 Vilamoura, POR 20
2020 49er World Championships Geelong, AUS 56
(with Alexander Heinzemann)
2019 Pan American Games Lima, PER BRONZE
(with Alexander Heinzemann)
2019 49er World Championships Auckland, NZ 60
2017 49er World Championships Matosinhos, POR 56
2014 World Sailing Championships Santander, SPA 40
(with David Mori)
2014 49er Youth Championships Aarhus, DEN 10
(with David Mori)