August 11, 2019
Canada wins Gold & Bronze in Sailing at the 2019 Pan Am Games
Sail Canada – Sarah Douglas wins Gold
Alexander Heinzemann & Justin Barnes win Bronze!
Friday, August 9th, 2019 – Paracas, Peru
The wind definitely did not disappoint today in Paracas, Peru. The first day of medal races saw a southwesterly breeze blowing from 15 knots to over 25 in the afternoon. Racing was tight and the competition was high, but our Canadian sailors managed to make their way onto the podium with pride and joy!
Coming straight from Japan, Sarah Douglas wasted no time to get out on the water to show us what she here came to do, win. While the event took a while to kick off with little breeze, this Laser Radial sailor took every opportunity she had to stay at the top of the fleet. In a continuous battle against USA, today’s medal race was a fight for gold.
“The racing was tight was today” she comments, “it was a fight for first place and I gave it my all to make sure I came out on top. I came here with certain goals and I worked on them. It was a really great battle with all the other countries and I’m so happy to have won gold for Canada!”
This medal is a great representation of all the hard work Sarah continuously puts into the sport. “Having the support of Team Canada and my family means the world to me” she states, “it was a thrill to step onto the podium and celebrate not only with everyone here but also back home. We’re one year out until the Olympics and I look forward to working towards it!”
In the 49er, Alexander Heinzemann and Justin Barnes, had a real fight to make it across the finish line. Sailing in winds of over 25 knots, these athletes had never raced in anything quite like it before. “It’s the type of conditions you’d never expect to be racing in” they comment, “everyone in the fleet capsized and we didn’t even use our jib in the downwind.” The winds were high but that didn’t stop these sailors one bit, “we kept it together and made it through third which was a great accomplishment for us.”
Finishing 3rd overall, this team not only brings home a bronze medal for Canada, but they also secure the country a spot in the 49er for Tokyo 2020. “Receiving a medal, and qualifying a country berth for the Olympics is more than we could have imagined. We’re very happy with how we sailed as a team, and share this one with everyone back home!”
It has been a very proud day for the sailing community across Canada! Congratulations to our medal winners today, and all sailors who represented the country this week. Don’t miss a moment as our 49erFX, Sunfish, and Kiteboarders hit the water for their chance to stand on the podium tomorrow.