Taekwondo athletes first team members named to the Paris 2024 Canadian Olympic Team

TORONTO (April 23, 2024) – Taekwondo Canada and the Canadian Olympic Committee have announced the first athletes nominated to Team Canada for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. The athletes are:

Josipa Kafadar (Burnaby, B.C.) – Women’s -49kg
Skylar Park (Winnipeg, Man.) – Women’s -57kg

Skylar Park qualified for Paris 2024 by finishing third in the World Taekwondo Olympic Ranking for the -57kg event at the end of 2023. The 25-year-old, who is coached by her father, Jae Park, will make her second Olympic appearance. She reached the quarterfinals in her Olympic debut at Tokyo 2020. Park had an excellent 2023 season, winning gold at five different events, including her first career World Taekwondo Grand Prix victory and the Santiago 2023 Pan American Games, which earned her valuable Olympic qualification ranking points.

In 2019, Park won bronze in the -57kg category at the World Taekwondo Championships, her first senior world championship podium, as well as silver in the same category at the Lima 2019 Pan American Games. Park won the 2016 World Taekwondo Junior Championships in -59kg in front of a home crowd in Burnaby, B.C., catapulting her to the success she would have in the years following.

“Having the honour of representing Canada on any stage is always a huge honour, but to have the opportunity to represent your country on the biggest sporting stage in the world is so special,” said Park. “My team and I are extremely proud and grateful to have qualified for our second Olympic Games. I cannot wait to fight for the top of the Olympic podium this summer in Paris!”

Josipa Kafadar finished top two in the women’s -49kg event at the Pan American Qualification Tournament in Dominican Republic earlier this month to qualify for her first Olympic Games. Earlier this year, she won bronze medals at the Canada and US Opens, after winning gold at the Luxembourg and British Opens in 2023. She advanced to the quarterfinals at the inaugural Junior Pan American Games which were held in Cali, Colombia in 2021, three years after she won silver in the -49kg category at the 2018 World Taekwondo Junior Championships.

“Making the Canadian Olympic team has always been one of my biggest dreams,” said Kafadar. “I’ve wanted it for as long as I can remember. The idea of representing my country at such a huge event makes me feel incredibly proud and motivated. Now my Olympic dream will become reality at Paris 2024.”

Taekwondo will take place August 7 to August 10 (Day 12 to 15) at the Grand Palais. Kafadar will compete on August 7 (Day 12) while Park will compete on August 8 (Day 13).

“The Olympic qualification process for taekwondo is incredibly difficult, and the fact that we have earned quota spots through both Olympic Ranking and the Continental Qualification Tournament highlights Skylar’s ongoing consistency on the world stage and Josipa’s ability to perform on demand,” said Dr. Allan Wrigley, High Performance Director of Taekwondo Canada. “Coach Jae and Coach Dan have done an exceptional job to get both athletes into these positions, and are well on their way towards preparing them for their Olympic dream of standing on the podium and representing Canada in Paris.”

Team Canada’s taekwondo team for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games also includes the following coaches and support staff:

Shane Britton (Surrey, B.C.) – Training Partner
Jae Park (Winnipeg, Man.) – Coach
Tae-Ku Park (Winnipeg, Man.) – Training Partner
Daniel Thornton (Courtenay, B.C.) – Coach
Allan Wrigley (Sooke, B.C.) – Team Leader

“Taekwondo Canada is so proud of the team we are sending to Paris. Both Skylar Park and Josipa Kafadar have worked hard to realize their Olympic dreams and I know that all Canadians will be cheering them on.” said Dave Harris, Taekwondo Canada Executive Director. “A great deal of credit also goes to Skylar’s coach and father Jae Park as well as Josipa’s coach Dan Thornton. Taekwondo Canada could not be more excited to see them all on the biggest sports stage in the world and we wish them all the best.”

‘’Congratulations to Josipa and Skylar, the first two athletes named to Team Canada for Paris 2024! I am incredibly excited to support these athletes while they achieve their dreams and to experience this adventure with them. I can’t wait to see Canadian colours shine in Paris,” said Bruny Surin, Team Canada’s Paris 2024 Chef de Mission.

Taekwondo has been on the Olympic programme since Sydney 2000. To date, Team Canada has two Olympic medals in the sport – a bronze by Dominique Bosshart at Sydney 2000 and a silver by Karine Sergerie at Beijing 2008.

Prior to being named to Team Canada, all nominations are subject to approval by the Canadian Olympic Committee’s Team Selection Committee following its receipt of nominations by all National Sport Organisations.



David Harris, Executive Director
Taekwondo Canada
T: 613-695-5425 / C: 519-859-7410

Tara MacBournie, Program Manager, Sport Communications
Canadian Olympic Committee
C: 647-522-8328

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