16 of ‘16: Diver Roseline Filion swaps her crutches for Olympic bronze
With the year coming to a close, Olympic.ca will look back at 16 of the most memorable Team Canada stories of 2016. As a new “16 of ‘16” story is revealed daily, you can find the entire series here.
In 2016, Roseline Filion faced one of the most challenging obstacles in her career, a broken ankle only eight months ahead of the Olympic Games.
“You have to expect the unexpected,” stated the London 2012 Olympic bronze medallist after her devastating injury almost one year ago.
Having remained free of major injuries in her 20 years of diving, she had no time to lose. Beginning the Olympic year with a broken foot was a daunting challenge, but the Canadian never strayed from her game plan. No matter what, she would be diving into the Olympic pool on August 9, 2016.
After four weeks of hard work, Filion was already back in the water and on the road to recovery.
She admitted later, “It was extremely difficult, mentally speaking. An abnormal year filled with highs, lows, doubts, concerns.”
On the road with the national team in February, the Canadian stepped on the 10 metre platform for the first time alongside her partner Meaghan Benfeito. It was at Rio de Janeiro’s Maria Lenk Centre, the very place where the Olympic competition would take place six months later.
Sticking to her rehab plan, Filion made a strong comeback; in fact, it only took her two competitions to get back on an international podium at the Diving World Series.
The world championships runner-up won her bet and, along with her partner of the past 11 years, reached the 10m Olympic final event, less than eight months after her accident. Sitting in fifth place with one dive to go, Benfeito and Filion executed the best dive of their routine to climb up the rankings and take home bronze.
Filion is living proof that when you believe in something, anything is possible.
She may have ended her Olympic career with a second bronze medal, but after the roller coaster season she went through, the Quebecker admitted behind the scenes at Rio 2016 that this accomplishment had, in her eyes, a golden finish.