Ellie Black, who won five medals at Lima 2019 to become Canada’s most decorated gymnast ever at the Pan Am Games, will carry the maple leaf into the Closing Ceremony on Sunday.
To be named Team Canada’s flagbearer is a tremendous honour for the 23-year-old, who has a history of making history. She put her name into the record books once more in Lima when she became the first woman to win back-to-back gold medals in the individual all-around at the Pan Am Games, helping her to reach 10 career medals at the multi-sport competition.
Here’s a quick reminder of some of the truly great things Black has achieved while representing Canada:
Toronto 2015: Pan Am Games queen is born
Black won her first five Pan Am Games medals four years ago in Toronto. The Halifax native was one of just five athletes to win five medals at Toronto 2015, making her Canada’s most decorated athlete of the home Games.
Her gold medal in the individual all-around was the first by a Canadian in the event since San Juan 1979 and the first by a non-American since Caracas 1983. She also captured gold on beam and floor exercise to go with a team silver and a vault bronze.
Rio 2016: Canadian Olympic best ever
Black carried that momentum into her second Olympic Games, where she earned a fifth-place finish in the individual all-around, a Canadian best-ever performance.
2017 World Championships: Silver breakthrough
Black thrilled the home crowd in Montreal when she won silver for Canada’s first ever world championship medal in the individual all-around. It was just the ninth medal Canada had won in the 114-year history of the artistic gymnastics world championships and the first since 2006.
2018 Commonwealth Games: Gold in Gold Coast
Black’s star shone brightly Down Under when she stood atop the podium in the individual all-around and was part of the squad which won Canada’s first team gold in women’s artistic gymnastics since 1990.
Lima 2019: Rewriting history
Black doubled her career medal count at the Pan Am Games with an outstanding week in Lima.
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Wow what a week! So incredibly proud of our team and what we were able to accomplish here in Lima. Congrats to all the athletes 🙌🏻 Thank you all for the love and support. Back to back Pan Am Champion 🙈 Making history and Canada proud! 🇨🇦 #teamcanada #gymnasticsisfun #panamgames2019 @teamcanada @gymcan1
First came a second straight silver in the team event, followed by her historic golden repeat in the all-around. She qualified for all four individual apparatus finals and won medals in three of them, taking gold on vault, silver on beam and bronze on uneven bars.
Those five medals were the most won by any artistic gymnast at Lima 2019. Her 10 career medals at the Pan Am Games put her past Willie Weiler as Canada’s most decorated gymnast in the history of the event.
Beyond her fierce performance, Black also showed true sportsmanlike spirit during her final event in Lima. It was her teammate, Brooklyn Moors, who pushed Black off the floor exercise podium when she laid down a stunning routine to win her first Pan Am Games gold medal. Instead of being disappointed, Black only expressed pure excitement for the young rookie, further displaying her leadership role on team and authenticity as an athlete.
Black hopes to add more accomplishments to her résumé by translating this Pan Am success to the world championships later this year. The primary goal is to qualify the full Canadian women’s team for Tokyo 2020 after finishing a best-ever fourth in the team event at the 2018 Worlds.
You can watch the Lima 2019 Closing Ceremony LIVE on cbcsports.ca and on the CBC Sports app.