History made as men competed in first-ever solo events
More than 200 athletes, representing 26 different countries, competed at the 2022 FINA World Junior Artistic Swimming Championships in Québec City. Hosted and organized by Canada Artistic Swimming, the competition was held August 23-27 at the Desjardins Aquatic Centre – PEPS at the Université Laval.
Twelve events were held over the five days of competition, and history was made as men competed in the solo event for the first time. The historic gold medals in both the Technical and Free event went to Spain’s Dennis GONZALEZ BONEU. Male athletes also competed alongside their female counterparts in the Mixed Highlight routines, as well as the Mixed Duet, bringing a new dimension to the sport.
Spain was the winner of the overall trophy, winning medals in 11 of the 12 events, including an exciting finish in the team free event, narrowly edging the Japanese team by the barest of margins, .0667. The Japanese team had a strong showing as well, also winning 11 medals, eight of them gold.
“We were honored to host this FINA World Junior Artistic Swimming Championships in Quebec City, and to give these talented young athletes the full experience of a major competition,” said Jackie Buckingham, CEO, Canada Artistic Swimming. “The atmosphere in the pool, along with the calibre of the organization, created a memorable experience, one we were proud to host. Many thanks to our partners Natation Artistique Quebec and Club Excellence Synchro for their contributions to making this event such a great success.”
This was the 17th edition of the competition, which first began in Cali, Colombia in 1989. The event was last held in 2018 in Budapest, Hungary. Canada hosted the event once previously, in 2002 in Montreal, Québec.
A tremendous group of volunteers supported Canada Artistic Swimming to stage this year’s event, which also featured :
- 3 days of training
- 5 days of competition
- 5 continents represented
- 12 events
- 26 hours of webcast
- 26 countries participated
- 30 judges and officials
- 60 coaches
- 100 volunteers
- 160 medals
- 215 athletes
- 10,000 meals served!
Team Canada finishes top seven in all events
With a young team, many of whom will continue to be eligible to compete at the next Junior World Championships, Canadian finishes ranged from fifth to seventh in the six events it entered. Canada’s soloist, Audrey LAMOTHE, who recently finished in the top 10 at the 2022 FINA World Artistic Swimming Championships, concluded her season with another strong performance. She finished fifth in the Technical event, less than a point away from the bronze medal. In the Free event, she placed sixth. In the Duet Technical event, Raphaelle GAUTHIER and Florence TREMBLAY finished sixth. Leonie CORBEIL and Mya FORTIN competed in the Duet Free and swam to a seventh-place finish.
While training together for only a few months in preparation for this event, the Canadian team had strong performances in front of an energetic home crowd. Swimming for Canada in the Team Technical event, Leonie CORBEIL, Mya FORTIN, Raphaelle GAUTHIER, Georgia HOCK, Lauren IRVINE, Audrey LAMOTHE, Jonnie NEWMAN, Florence TREMBLAY, finished fifth, just 1.8 points from the bronze medal position. In the Team Free event, Lauren BELL, Leonie CORBEIL, Mya FORTIN, Raphaelle GAUTHIER, Georgia HOCK, Jonnie NEWMAN, Coralie PELLETIER, and Florence TREMBLAY were sixth.
Canadian Alumni in attendance
Several former members of Canada’s National Team from various decades attended the event as spectators to cheer on the young athletes. As well recent Team Canada alumni were involved in different roles. Andrée-Anne Côté worked with the organizing committee behind the scenes, coordinating several different aspects of the event. Claudia Holzner and Jacqueline Simoneau joined veteran broadcaster Andrea Holland to commentate on the broadcast coverage.
Videos are available to view on the FINA YouTube Channel.
Full Results are available on the FINA website.