TORONTO — On Wednesday, Canada’s iconic retailer, Hudson’s Bay unveiled the official Team Canada Collection for the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games. Fourteen athletes including Sergio Pessoa (Judo), Michelle Li (Badminton), Bianca Farella (Rugby), Jason Burnett (Trampoline), Jessica Zelinka(Athletics), Katerine Savard (Swimming), Tory Nyhaug (Bmx Cycling), Scott Tupper (Field Hockey) Benoit Huot and Camille Bérubé (Para-swimming), Cody Caldwell and Patrice Dagenais (Wheelchair Rugby), Leah Robinson (Para-athletics), Melanie Hawtin (Wheelchair Basketball) took to the stage at the Glenn Gould Studio on Front Street to present a first look at the uniforms Team Canada will wear during the Games in July and August.
Inspired by the 50 year anniversary of the Canadian flag, Hudson’s Bay’s internal team of innovative and creative designers used the maple leaf as the starting point for the graphics showcased throughout the collection. Each of the 22 pieces is reminiscent of classic varsity sport; while at the same time are a modern nod towards the current athleisure trend in fashion. Each piece was carefully designed to ensure Canada’s athletes felt strong, confident and powerful as they commit to showcasing their immeasurable talent on the Pan Am and Parapan Am stage.
“Hudson’s Bay is incredibly proud to be a Premier National Partner of the Canadian Olympic Committee and Canadian Paralympic Committee and to be the Official Outfitter of the Canadian Pan Am and Parapan Am Teams”, said Liz Rodbell, President, Hudson’s Bay. “Hudson’s Bay has dressed Team Canada for these Games since 2007 and we remain committed to supporting our athletes. We can’t wait to see what they will accomplish in Toronto this summer.”
“Hudson’s Bay have a long history of supporting Team Canada,” said Marcel Aubut, President, Canadian Olympic Committee. “Hudson’s Bay has once again hit the mark and delivered a kit that will make our athletes feel confident and empowered as they take on the Americas here in Toronto this summer.”
“The uniforms look and feel fantastic,” said Jason Burnett, two-time Olympian, Beijing 2008 silver medallist. “The maple leaf has always been a huge symbol of pride for Canadians so it is only fitting that this has been incorporated into the kit. Thanks to Hudson’s Bay, I know Team Canada are going to walk into the opening ceremony with pride and confidence.”
“We are so pleased with the clothing collection launched today and with our ongoing partnership with HBC, who are such dedicated supporters of Team Canada and always put the needs of athletes first,” said Gaétan Tardif, President, Canadian Paralympic Committee. “Canada’s Pan Am and Parapan Am Teams have an enormous potential to unify Canadians and move the country during the Toronto Games. With just 100 days to the Parapan Am Games, we are looking forward with great anticipation to Canada hosting the best athletes in the Americas and going for gold.”
“It was incredibly exciting to be part of the launch today of the new line up of team clothing for the Toronto Games,” said Melanie Hawtin (Oakville, Ont.), a 2014 world champion wheelchair basketball player and Parapan Am Games hopeful. “Having a sea of Canadian fans wearing red and white to cheer us on while we wear the maple leaf will be such a proud and thrilling feeling. I would encourage every Canadian to buy a piece from this clothing collection to show that we are one big team.”
The Hudson’s Bay Official Pan Am/Parapan Am Collection unites style and sport. Key elements woven throughout the collection include the bold and confident use of red, white, grey and black and a modernized maple leaf, shown either outlined or solid with a strong Canada wordmark, designed in a font inspired by an oval athletic track. It captures a contemporary and modern fashion feel and highlights the essence of Canada’s strong and distinguishing personality.
Other key considerations included choosing fabrics that are lightweight and breathable, and offering various layering pieces such as tanks, T’s, hoodies and a windbreaker to stand up to varying weather conditions.
The Pan Am athletes will also find the words “En Garde” in the lining of several items in their clothing package. This was a unique and special design element, championed by Pan Am Chef de Mission, Curt Harnett to provide our athletes with a strong call to action as they put on their uniforms. The idea originated at the Guadalajara 2011 Pan Am Games when Harnett, who was Assistant Chef de Mission at the time and Chef de Mission Jacques Cardyn created this rally cry for Team Canada. Originally a fencing term, “En Garde” means taking the opening position for action, to be prepared and ready.
“Thank you to Hudson’s Bay for designing such a beautiful kit for our athletes,” said Curt Harnett, Chef de Mission, TORONTO 2015 Games. “Having competed in multiple Games myself, I know it’s important to look and feel your best and this kit is going to give our athletes some added swagger as they compete against the Americas on home soil in July.”
There will be 727 athletes competing for Team Canada in the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Games and approximately 250 para-athletes competing for Team Canada in the Parapan Am Games. Each team member will receive 18 garments and four accessories consisting of two jackets, two pants, seven t-shirts/tanks, one polo, four shorts, one half-zip pull-over, one hoodie, a rolling duffle, backpack, rally scarf and hat. This will outfit them for the opening and closing ceremonies, during podium presentations and while simply hanging out in the athlete village.