BC athletes shine at London Olympics

British Columbia-connected athletes excelled at the London 2012 Olympic Summer Games. They brought in half of the nation’s total medal haul and substantially increased the percentage of medals won by B.C-connected athletes. Of Canada’s 18 medals, athletes who are either from B.C., or trainin the province, earned nine, including six bronze and three silver. At the Beijing 2008 Olympic Summer Games, B.C. athletes won 39 per cent of Canadian medals. At the Athens 2004 Olympic Summer Games, B.C. won 25 per cent, and at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Summer Games, B.C. earned 21 per cent of Canada’s total medal count.

B.C.’s medal winners were (in chronological order of achievement):

* Christine Girard, White Rock (Rouyn-Noranda, Que.) – weighlifting – women’s 63-kg – bronze.
* Men’s eight rowing team – silver.
* Brent Hayden, Vancouver (Mission) – swimming – men’s 100-metre freestyle – bronze.
* Women’s eight rowing team – silver.
* Ryan Cochrane, Victoria – swimming – men’s 1,500-metre freestyle – silver.
* Women’s team pursuit – cycling, track – bronze.
* Carol Huynh, Hazelton – wrestling – women’s 48-kg freestyle – bronze.
* Women’s soccer team – bronze.
* Richard Weinberger, Victoria (Surrey) – swimming – open water 10km – bronze.

B.C. sent 110 athletes to the Games to compete in 22 sports. The British Columbia contingent accounted for 40 per cent of the Canadian Olympic Team. Of those athletes, 67 were born and raised in B.C.; the other 43 received substantial training and support through the B.C. sport system.

B.C. also sent 52 coaches, officials, technical staff, and medical and support team members to the Games.

B.C. soccer star Christine Sinclair, who captured the hearts of Canadians during the Games, represented Canada as flag-bearer for the closing ceremony. Victoria’s Simon Whitfield did the honours during the opening ceremony.

Quick Facts:
* 50 per cent of Team Canada’s Olympic medals in 2012 were won by B.C.-based athletes. This represents an 11 per cent increase from the Beijing 2008 Olympic Summer Games.
* 40 per cent of the 277 athletes who represented Canada in London are either born and/or train in B.C.
* 27 per cent of the 96 Canadian Olympic coaches and technical staff are from B.C.
* 31 per cent of the 36 Canadian Olympic medical support staff are from B.C.
* 19 per cent of the 43 Canadian international competition officials are from B.C.
* The Canadian Paralympic Committee will name the Canadian Paralympic Team on Tuesday, Aug. 14.