June 5, 2021 – Gavirate, Italy
Canada’s PR3 mixed coxed four is headed to the Tokyo Paralympics after a win in the finals at the Final Paralympic Qualification Regatta.
Bayleigh Hooper (Peterborough Rowing Club), Andrew Todd (North Star Rowing Club), Victoria Nolan (Victoria City Rowing Club), Kyle Fredrickson (University of Victoria Rowing Club) and coxswain Laura Court (St. Catharines Rowing Club) improved upon their event-best race time from the heats to finish first in the PR3 Mix4+ final. Their 7:08.87 effort put them just ahead of Brazil, the other team to qualify for Tokyo.
“I still can’t believe it happened. I don’t think it has fully hit me yet,” said Court. “It is definitely pretty emotional considering everything that’s happened over the past year. I think what is working so well is that through all of this we’ve tried to have patience and stick to what we know how to do.”
In the PR2 mixed double final, Jessye Brockway (Gorge Narrows Rowing Club) and Jeremy Hall (Edmonton Rowing Club) had a close race, finishing in third place. The first and second place finishers, Italy and Australia, qualified for Tokyo.
“It was not the outcome we hoped for, but we leave with our heads held high—we set a standard for ourselves and plowed through it,” said Hall. “We pulled it all together when it mattered most and left everything we had out there. Proud of this accomplishment.”
“I’m tremendously proud of both crews,” said National Para Team Coach John Wetzstein. “We’ve been through a lot, as has everyone. We achieved our best performances to date and regardless of what the outcomes mean for each crew, we are looking forward.”
For more details on the Final Paralympic Qualification Regatta, click here.
For more details on Tokyo 2020, click here.
*Prior to being named to Team Canada, all nominations are subject to approval by the CPC’s Team Selection Committee following its receipt of nominations by all National Sport Organizations.
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Photo: Maren Derlien