Gymnastics Canada will not send teams to 2021 Pan American Gymnastics Championships
OTTAWA, ON (May 7, 2021) – Gymnastics Canada has made the very difficult decision to not enter teams in the upcoming 2021 Senior Pan American Championships being held in Rio de Janeiro, BRA between June 4-13, 2021 and the 2021 Junior Pan American Championships slated for Guadalajara, MEX (artistic), and Guatemala City, GUA (rhythmic) due to health and safety concerns resulting from the COVID-19 global pandemic.
“In this pandemic environment, an additional layer of concern is required when travelling internationally to competitions,” said Ian Moss, CEO for Gymnastics Canada. “Gymnastics Canada has a very detailed risk assessment protocol that is followed for all international events and, for these competitions, it was felt that the risk to the health and safety of all travelling personnel was too high at this time to consider competing.”
The Senior Pan American Championships were Canada’s last chance qualifier event for the Tokyo Olympic Games in men’s artistic, women’s artistic, and rhythmic gymnastics. Canada had the opportunity to qualify 1 more athlete in men’s and women’s artistic respectively, and 1 individual and 1 group in rhythmic gymnastics at this competition. The event was also a qualifier for trampoline gymnastics, but there is still one more chance to qualify for that discipline at a World Cup competition to be held in Italy in the coming weeks.
In rhythmic gymnastics, the event was also an individual qualification event for the 2021 World Championships.
“We realize the impact these decisions have on our athletes, especially those senior athletes that have dedicated so many years to their ambition of competing at the Olympic Games,” added Moss. “We will do everything we can not only to support all athletes and coaches impacted by this decision through this difficult period, but to also provide hope and opportunity moving forward towards their international goals in the future.”
Athletes and coaches did have the opportunity to appeal this decision, and GymCan went through the Sport Dispute Resolution Centre of Canada (SDRCC) arbitration process with these individuals to show transparency around the decision. The result of that appeal, which ruled in GymCan’s favour, was delivered to all parties on May 6th, 2021.
GymCan looks forward to early engagement and discussion with the Pan American Gymnastics Union (PAGU), and the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) in the future in order to ensure that decisions are made that put the health, safety, and well-being of all participants as the highest priority.
ABOUT GYMNASTICS CANADA
First established in 1969, Gymnastics Canada has been supporting the mastery of movement in Canada for five decades as the national governing body for the sport of gymnastics in Canada. We work closely with the twelve provincial federations and 700 local clubs to provide a broad range of programs and services to meet the needs of all participants. From athlete development, to coach and judge education, Gymnastics Canada sets the operating standards and practices for the sport in Canada. Our mandate is to promote and provide positive and diverse gymnastics experiences through the delivery of quality and safe gymnastics programming. Visitwww.gymcan.org for more information, or follow us @gymcan1. From here, we soar.
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