Weekend Roundup: Melissa & Brandie claim first Beach Pro Tour title together, Mislawchuk races to fourth straight podium in Mexico
In just their seventh tournament together, Melissa Humana-Paredes and Brandie Wilkerson swept their way to the top of the podium for the first time in a Beach Pro Tour event. Tyler Mislawchuk continued his string of success in Huatulco, Mexico, earning a fourth straight medal at that World Triathlon Cup stop. Meanwhile, Sarah Mitton broke through for her first career Diamond League victory.
That’s just a taste of the great results achieved by Team Canada athletes over the weekend. Here’s a look at what else you might have missed:
Beach Volleyball: Champions for the first time as a team
The Canadians won 12 straight sets to win all six matches they played, capped off with a 21-17, 21-17 win over Swiss duo Esmée Böbner and Zoé Vergé-Dépré. In the final, Humana-Paredes and Wilkerson had the clear upper hand when it came to attacks and blocks.
“It was a really solid week of consistent play by us. We stuck together, overcoming some adversity and really enjoyed playing each point,” Humana-Paredes said. “It’s been a long time on the road and we’re excited to go home to celebrate with our loved ones and get ready for the next one.”
Back in March, the duo won the Miami Beach Open on the AVP Pro Series, but this is their first international victory that will count towards their world ranking and Olympic qualification. It follows the bronze medal they won earlier in June at the Elite16 Beach Pro Tour event in Ostrava, Czechia.
Triathlon: Mislawchuk loves racing in Mexico
Tyler Mislawchuk can swim, cycle, and run with the best of them as he added another World Triathlon Cup medal to his resume on Saturday in Huatulco, Mexico.
The 28-year-old raced at the front of the pack through all three disciplines, finishing the course in a time of 54 minutes and 14 seconds. Spain’s David Castro edged Mislawchuk for gold by one second. Mislawchuk won the Huatulco race in 2019 and 2021 before finishing as the runner-up the last two years.
In the women’s race, Dominika Jamnicky was in contention for a medal before finishing up with an impressive fifth place. “Today was unreal. It was just one of those days you have goosebumps,” she said afterwards.
Athletics: Mitton earns first Diamond League victory
Shot putter Sarah Mitton earned her first career Diamond League victory on Thursday. She threw 19.54m on her first attempt at the Bislett Games in Oslo. That is just four centimetres shy of her season best outdoors.
Post-meet, Mitton said that in such a competitive field of throwers, part of her strategy was to focus on her first throw and make it count. “I came in with big energy and it worked,” she said.
Two days earlier, Camryn Rogers continued her strong outdoor season with a second place finish in the hammer throw at the Paavo Nurmi Games in Turku, Finland. Rogers threw 76.21m to take silver. Earlier this year, she raised her own Canadian record to 78.62m and she is excited about the momentum she’s gathered this season. Her top five average throws of this season are now higher than her personal best of 2022.
Ethan Katzburg is also on a roll in men’s hammer throw. He finished third in Oslo with a distance of 77.93m, close to his best of the season. Andre De Grasse was also in action in Oslo, running a season-best time of 20.33 in the 200m, earning a fifth place finish. De Grasse, who had been struggling with a toe injury, sees the race as a sign of significant progress.
“To get a season’s best after injury means I am moving in the right direction,” De Grasse said. “That’s all I can do and get stronger every meet. I am healthy again so I can keep improving.”
Track cycling: Team Canada in full force at the Pan American Championships
Canada was the class of the field at the Pan American Track Cycling Championships, coming away with 18 medals, including 11 gold.
Dylan Bibic took gold in the men’s scratch race, adding the Pan Am title to his status of reigning world champion in the event. He went on to secure gold in both the Omnium and the elimination race. He was also a gold medallist in the Madison with Mathias Guillemette and in the team pursuit, in which the duo were joined by Michael Foley and Sean Richardson. Guillemette additionally won silver in the men’s points race.
Lauriane Genest was also a multi-medallist, earning gold in the women’s sprint to go with silvers in the keirin and team sprint, the latter with Sarah Orban and Jackie Boyle. Orban added bronze in the individual sprint.
James Hedgcock, Tyler Rorke, and Nick Wammes won the gold medal in the men’s team sprint. Hedgcock also won gold in the 1km time trial and bronze in the keirin.
Canada posted double podiums in both the men’s and women’s individual pursuit events, as Chris Ernst and Ariane Bonhomme grabbed the gold medals while Foley and Fiona Majendie earned silvers. Bonhomme was also a member of the victorious Canadian quartet in the women’s team pursuit and won silver in the women’s Madison with Devaney Collier, who added her own bronze in the elimination race.
Rowing: Strong season debut for Canadian boats
In their first World Cup of 2023, the Canadian rowing team had boats racing in four A finals. The women’s eight were just 0.09 of a second away from winning the silver medal in a three-boat race against Australia and Great Britain. That was the second race of the day for all crew members, who had earlier split up to compete in the women’s four. Jessica Sevick, Cassidy Deane, Morgan Rosts, and Kirsten Edwards made it to the A final in that event, finishing fifth overall.
The Canadian men’s eight were in tougher competition in their A final. While Great Britain powered ahead for the gold, the Canadians were running in second place through the 1500m mark. But they would be overtaken and came away with a fifth-place finish. Jill Moffatt and Jenny Casson were also A finalists in the women’s lightweight double sculls. They secured a fifth-place finish as well.
Next up for the Canadian crews will be a trip to the historic and prestigious Henley Royal Regatta, taking place June 27-July 2.
Road Cycling: Woods wins in warm up for Tour de France
For the second straight year, Michael Woods won the general classification at La Route d’Occitanie, a four-stage race in southwest France. He moved into the overall lead with a victory in the third stage that ended with a challenging mountain top finish. He took the title on Sunday by 10 seconds over Spaniard Cristian Rodriguez Martin. It made for a very special Father’s Day with his children there to celebrate on the podium with him. Woods’ focus now turns to the Tour de France, for which he’s “excited” after a race that he called “a nice step in the right direction”.
Handball: Biggest breakthrough in two decades
The Canadian women’s handball team won the silver medal at the Nor.Ca Women’s Handball Championship held in Nuuk, Greenland. It is Canada’s first podium in Pan American handball competition since 1999. The team won three games in the round robin, defeating Mexico, Cuba, and the United States to set up a final showdown against the hosts. Greenland took a tight 17-15 win to advance to the IHF Women’s World Championship.