Richmond Hill, Ont. — A new year may be just beginning, but it’s not too early to look forward to the upcoming Olympic Games. The Games begin in August, but BMW Group Canada took advantage of the kick-off to 2016 as a means to introduce Team BMW, a group of six high-performance Canadian athletes aiming to compete at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Support for Team BMW athletes will be on various levels in an extension of the company’s role as National Partner and Official Vehicle of the Canadian Olympic Team.
Passionate about performance and driven to succeed, Team BMW brings the BMW spirit to life. This group of athletes represents the essence of the BMW Group in human form: efficient performance, innovation, power and grace. BMW Group Canada is proud to support each of these athletes on their road to success.
BMW Group Canada announced its partnership with the Canadian Olympic Team in January of 2013. As National Partner and Official Vehicle of the Canadian Olympic Team, the company and its retailers have since provided athlete support and generated funds that go towards specialized programs, sports medicine, coaching and travel, among other items. This Olympic year will see those efforts continue, with Team BMW being only the beginning.
Team BMW consists of the following athletes:
- Roseline Filion, 10m Synchronized Diving: Roseline and diving partner Meaghan Benfeito have been one of the best 10m teams in the world since 2005. Reaching Rio would be Roseline’s third Olympic Games. She currently holds gold, bronze and silver medals from various competitions including the Olympic Games, the Pan Am Games, and World Championships.
- Meaghan Benfeito, 10m Synchronized Diving: Diving partner of Roseline Filion, Meaghan began diving at age seven. In her second Olympic Games at London 2012, the pair won bronze. She has won multiple medals at other multi-sport games, including the 2011 Pan Am Games where she won silver with Filion and bronze individually. In 2014, she was a double Commonwealth Games gold medallist in the 10m and 10m synchro events.
- Mark de Jonge, 200m Sprint Kayak: Mark has come a long way since learning to “just stay upright” in a kayak. Earning a bronze medal at his Olympic debut in London 2012, Mark has proven himself to be a resilient and focused athlete. In 2015, he successfully defended his world championship gold medal, making him the first man to win back-to-back titles since 2003.
- Derek Drouin, High Jump: At his first Olympic Games in London 2012, Derek was part of a three-way tie for bronze after clearing 2.29m. It was Canada’s first Olympic high jump medal since 1976. In 2013, he won bronze at the 2013 IAAF World Championships, and in 2014, he became one of 12 men in history to jump the height of 2.40m, breaking his own Canadian record. This past summer, he won gold at the Pan Am Games, followed by another gold at the World Track and Field Championships.
- Ryan Cochrane, 400m and 1,500m Freestyle Swimming: Ryan is one of Canada’s most-decorated swimmers ever. His six medals at the FINA World Championships are the most ever earned by a Canadian swimmer. He is also just the second person to reach the podium in the 800m and 1500m freestyle events at three straight Worlds, winning a total of four silver and two bronze. His Olympic history includes a bronze medal at the Beijing Olympic Games in 2008, and a silver medal at the London Olympic Games in 2012.
- Brooke Henderson, Golf: Brooke Henderson made history in September, 2014 when she became the first Canadian to be ranked number one in the Women’s World Amateur Rankings. With more than 50 amateur victories to her credit, she turned pro in December, 2014. She then earned her first pro win at the 2015 Four Winds Invitational in June, becoming the third-youngest winner in Symetra Tour history. In December, 2015, she was named the Canadian Press Female Athlete of the Year, and is on track to represent Canada as golf makes it return to the Olympic Games in Rio.
“I know I speak for our retailers and associates nationwide when I say how proud I am to help Canadian athletes drive towards their Olympic dreams,” said Kevin Marcotte, Marketing Director, BMW Canada. “The BMW Group and the Olympic Movement share many common values, which makes our partnership resonate with every one of us. Supporting the Canadian Olympic Team enables us to give back to our community in a unique and fulfilling way by supporting athletes from coast to coast. It is an honour and a pleasure to assist these six athletes in their quest for the podium.”
“BMW has been an outstanding partner of the Canadian Olympic Team and we are honoured to continue our partnership with them,” said Derek Kent, Chief Marketing Officer, Canadian Olympic Committee. “Both of our organizations strive for high-performance and we look forward to seeing Ryan, Meaghan, Roseline, Mark, Derek and Brooke, with BMW’s support, bring this shared value to life on the road to Rio.”
“I’ve appreciated BMW products for quite some time,” said Olympic bronze medallist Mark de Jonge. “As an engineer, I really appreciate the innovation built into them. Having BMW as a partner has inspired me to look at my paddle differently and helped me to think differently about how I approach my sport.”
“I’m so happy to have a partner like BMW,” said Roseline Filion, Olympic bronze medallist. “Sponsorships help fuel the entire athlete. From food to training to transportation, the support is very much appreciated. My BMW X3 helps me get to all of my appointments and training and home to visit my parents. It helps me live the slightly hectic life of an athlete in training a bit more easily.”
BMW Group Canada is proud to partner of the Canadian Olympic Team and will showcase Team BMW on bmw.ca. As National Partner and Official Vehicle of the Canadian Olympic Team, BMW’s partnership will provide athlete support and generate fundraising opportunities for the team.