Swimming Canada to host Speedo Can\Am Para-Swimming Championships in Toronto

December 9, 2010

 December, 09, 2010

TORONTO –
World record holders Summer Mortimer of Newmarket, Ont., and Benoit
Huot of Montreal headline the Speedo Can\Am Para-Swimming Championships
set for this Friday to Sunday (December 10-12) at the Etobicoke Olympium
in Etobicoke, Ont.

While the competition is called the Can\Ams,
swimmers from nine countries are expected to compete including France,
Brazil, Belgium and Sweden along with the U.S., and Canada.

''This
competition has been beneficial for both the U.S., and Canada,'' said
Canadian national team coach Craig McCord of Vancouver. ''Because it is a
quality competition we get a lot of interest from other countries as
well. It's great to have this mix early in the new season.''

This
is the first major competition for the Canadians since their
outstanding performance at the International Paralympic Committees world
championships this past summer in Eindhoven, the Netherlands where they
earned 24 medals including eight gold.

At those championships,
the 17-year-old Mortimer had a breakthrough performance earning four
gold medals all in world record time in her world's debut. Other
Canadian women to watch include Valérie Grand'Maison of Montreal,
Canada's most decorated medallist at the worlds with six podium
appearances, Chelsea Gotell of Antigonish, N.S., and Amber Thomas of
Drayton Valley, Alta.

On the men's side, Canadian veteran Huot
wants to continue his surge from the worlds where he collected a gold,
three silver and a world record. Huot will face his archrival from
Brazil Andre Brasil. Donovan Tildesley of Vancouver and Brian Hill of
Vancouver are also among many medal threats for Canada.

''The
qualification period for the Paralympic Games started in August so
competitions like the Cana\Ams are important because it allows to earn
spots for the Games,'' said McCord. ''At worlds we earned 19 spots, and
others came close. So we are on track to reach our goal of about 30 for
London.''

Preliminaries are at 9:30 a.m. and finals at 4:30
p.m. local time each day. Live results will be available on-line athttps://www.swimming.ca/swimming.ca/liveresults/10SpeedoCanAm