Medal hopes at track, pool, golf course for Canada

The Hamilton Spectator - - SPORTS - DONNA SPENCER

The magic num­ber is 20. Canada’s Olympic team will be hard­pressed to get there in Rio.

Canada hasn’t cracked the 20medal bar­rier at a Sum­mer Olympics since 22 earned in 1996.

Canada likely needs 20 in Rio to be in con­tention for the stated goal of a top-12 rank­ing among coun­tries in to­tal medals won.

The Cana­dian Press pre­dicts 19 medals — two gold, five sil­ver and a dozen bronze — for Canada. CP picks pad­dler Mark de Jonge of Hal­i­fax and Toronto pole vaulter Shaw­nacy Bar­ber to win gold.

CP pre­dicted 22 medals for Lon­don in 2012 and over­shot by four. Canada fin­ished tied for 13th with 18 medals, in­clud­ing one gold.

The sports data com­pany In­fos­trada was pro­ject­ing 16 medals for Canada on Tues­day — three gold, eight sil­ver and five bronze — and ranked the coun­try 19th.

Canada ranks 11th in world cham­pi­onship medals. Here is a look at where CP be­lieves some of Canada’s medals will come from in Rio:

CA­NOE/KAYAK

1 gold — A bronze medal­list in 2012, Mark de Jonge of Hal­i­fax is a gold-medal favourite in the K1 200-me­tre sprint.

CY­CLING

1 sil­ver, 1 bronze — The Pan Amer­i­can Games velo­drome in Mil­ton, is a game-changer for Cana­dian track cy­cling. Led by quadru­ple Pan Am medal­list Jas­min Glaesser of Van­cou­ver, the women’s pur­suit team has been ranked in the world’s top three since a bronze in 2012. The women’s team is deep enough to pro­duce a medal in in­di­vid­ual races.

DIV­ING

2 bronze — Win­ners of syn­chro bronze medals in 2012, Mon­treal’s Meaghan Ben­feito and Jen­nifer Abel and Rose­line Fil­ion of Laval, Que., are medal con­tenders again in both the syn­chro­nized boards and their in­di­vid­ual events. Abel and Mon­treal’s Pamela Ware are ranked No. 3 in the world in syn­chro spring­board.

GOLF

1 sil­ver — The me­te­oric rise of 18year-old Brooke Hen­der­son of Smiths Falls, to world No. 2 and her first LPGA ma­jor win co­in­cides with women’s golf mak­ing its Sum­mer Games de­but.

GYM­NAS­TICS

1 bronze — Rosie MacLen­nan says she’s back on track for Rio af­ter deal­ing with con­cus­sion symp­toms last year. If the King City, tram­polin­ist doesn’t have another set­back, Canada’s lone gold medal­list in Lon­don is a medal con­tender again.

RUGBY SEV­ENS

1 bronze — Paced by in­ter­na­tional scor­ing star Ghis­laine Landry of Toronto, the women’s side is Canada’s strong­est chance for a medal in a team sport.

SWIM­MING

1 sil­ver, 2 bronze — Vic­to­ria’s Ryan Cochrane, a 2012 sil­ver medal­list in the 1,500 freestyle, is a con­tender again in that dis­tance plus the 400 freestyle. Deep in fe­male freestyle sprint­ers, a re­lay medal is pos­si­ble for Canada. Rio could be the com­ing-out party for 16-yearold Toronto sen­sa­tion Penny Olek­siak.

TRACK AND FIELD

1 gold, 1 sil­ver, 2 bronze — Com­ing off a best-ever per­for­mance at the 2015 world ath­let­ics cham­pi­onship, Canada has numer­ous threats in Rio: Bar­ber (pole vault); Derek Drouin (high jump) An­dre De Grasse (100); Damian Warner (de­cathlon); Melissa Bishop (800); Bri­anne Theisen (hep­tathlon).

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