Sydney Pickrem swims butterfly stroke in a raceMark Blinch/COC
Mark Blinch/COC

Sydney Pickrem

Team Canada Medal Count

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Bronze medal icon 1


Sydney Pickrem won Olympic bronze with the women’s 4x100m medley relay at Tokyo 2020, swimming the breaststroke leg in both the heats and the final. Individually, she was a finalist in the 200m IM, finishing sixth for the second straight Games. She also contributed to Canada’s fourth-place finish in the 4x200m freestyle relay during her second Olympic appearance.

Born and raised in Florida, Pickrem is a dual Canadian-American citizen whose family hails from Halifax. She made her Olympic debut at Rio 2016 where she advanced to the final of the 200m IM, finishing sixth, and also competed in the 400m IM.

A year later, she won bronze in the 400m IM at the 2017 World Aquatics Championships in Budapest. She was particularly proud of that result as it came just days after she was unable to finish the 200m IM final when she took on water. Pickrem added three more world championship medals in 2019, winning bronze in the 200m IM, the 200m breaststroke, and the 4x100m medley relay in which she swam the breaststroke leg for the team that set a Canadian record. She just missed the podium in the 400m IM with a fourth-place finish. In between world championships, she won 200m IM silver at the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships.

Pickrem competed at her fourth straight World Aquatics Championships in 2022, making it to the semifinals of the 200m IM. She decided to opt of the 2022 Commonwealth Games to be able to focus on her physical and mental health. She also announced she would be heading back to training with the Texas A&M Aggies. The return to that familiar environment appeared to help; in the fall/winter of 2022, she won six medals on the short course World Cup circuit and two relay medals at the World Swimming Championships (25m).

In 2015, Pickrem won both individual medleys at the Canadian Trials and reached the podium in both events at the Pan Am Games in Toronto, taking silver in the 400m IM and bronze in the 200m IM. She then made her FINA World Championship debut, advancing to the final of the 200m IM.

Pickrem qualified for her first national team in 2014, allowing her to compete at the Commonwealth Games and Pan Pacific Championships. Her summer was highlighted by her reaching the 200m IM final in Glasgow.

In 2013 she won four medals at the Australian Youth Olympic Festival before going on to swim in seven events at the FINA World Junior Championships where she won bronze in the 200m IM.

While competing for Texas A&M University from 2015 to 2019, Pickrem became an 11-time All-American and was twice named the school’s athlete of the year (2017, 2018).

A Little More About Sydney

Getting into the Sport: Started swimming at age 6 because her brother swam… Outside Interests: Enjoys wakeboarding and going to the beach… Graduated from Texas A&M University in 2019 where she studied kinesiology … Would like to become a physiotherapist… Enjoys reading athlete biographies… Odds and Ends: Nickname: Syd… Considers sparkly boots as her good luck charm… Favourite motto: Never give up… Usually eats steak and pasta before competing…

Olympic Highlights

Games Sport Event Finish
Rio 2016Swimming200m IM - Women6
Rio 2016Swimming400m IM - Women12
Tokyo 2020Swimming200m Breaststroke - WomenDNS
Tokyo 2020Swimming200m IM - Women6
Tokyo 2020Swimming400m IM - WomenDNS
Tokyo 2020Swimming4x200m Freestyle Relay - Women4
Tokyo 2020Swimming4x100m Medley Relay - WomenBronze

Notable International Results

Olympic Games: 2020 - 6th (200m IM), DNS (400m IM), DNS (200m breaststroke), 4th (4x200m freestyle), BRONZE (4x100m medley relay); 2016 - 12th (400m IM), 6th (200m IM)

World Aquatics Championships:2022 – 11th (200m IM); 2019 – BRONZE (200m IM), BRONZE (200m breaststroke), BRONZE (4x100m medley relay), 4th (400m IM); 2017 – BRONZE (400m IM), DNF (200m IM final); 2015 – 6th (200m IM), 14th (400m IM)

Pan American Games: 2015 – SILVER (400m IM), BRONZE (200m IM) Commonwealth Games:  2014 - 8th (200m IM)

Pan Pacific Championships: 2018 – SILVER (200m IM), 5th (200m breaststroke); 2014 – 13th (200m IM), 15th (400m IM), 20th (200m backstroke)

World Aquatics Championships (junior): 2013 - BRONZE (200m IM), 6th (400m IM), 10th (100m backstroke), 5th (200m backstroke), 19th (200m breaststroke), 4th (4x200m freestyle relay), 8th (4x100m medley relay)