Sports & Recreation | The Canadian Encyclopedia

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  • Article

    Crazy Canucks

    ​In 1975, alpine skier Ken Read became the first North American to win a World Cup downhill race. For a period of about ten years, Read and three other young Canadians — Dave Irwin, Dave Murray, and Steve Podborski — challenged the European ski establishment and changed the course of ski racing history in Canada.

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  • Article

    Curtis Hibbert

    Curtis Hibbert, gymnast (b at Mississauga, Ont 1966). Hibbert is the finest gymnast Canada has ever produced. Proficient in all apparatus, he excels in the strength events. In 1987 Hibbert won the first medal by a Canadian at the World Championships with a 2nd place finish in the high bar.

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  • Article

    Cyle Larin

    Cyle Christopher Larin, soccer player (born 17 April 1995 in Brampton, ON). Cyle Larin is the all-time leading goal scorer for the Canadian men’s soccer team. He was the first Canadian player to be selected first overall in the MLS SuperDraft. In 2016, he was named MLS Rookie of the Year after breaking the record for most goals scored by a rookie. After scoring 43 goals in 87 games in three seasons with Orlando City SC, he was transferred to Beşiktaş JK of the Süper Lig in 2018. Larin helped Beşiktaş JK win the Süper Lig, Turkish Cup and the Turkish Super Cup in 2020–21. He also played for Canada at the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

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  • Article

    Cindy Nicholas

    Cynthia Maria “Cindy” Nicholas, marathon swimmer, lawyer, politician (born 20 August 1957 in Toronto, ON; died 19 May 2016 in Scarborough, ON).  Cindy Nicholas was one of Canada’s most dominant marathon swimmers. In 1977, at the age of 20, she became both the first woman and youngest swimmer to complete a return crossing of the English Channel, setting a new world record of 19 hours and 55 minutes. She completed 19 crossings of the Channel between 1974 and 1982, including a record five return-trips, and earned the nickname “Queen of the Channel.” Nicholas was named the women’s world marathon swimming champion in 1976 and won the Bobbie Rosenfeld Award as Canada’s female athlete of the year in 1977. She also practiced law and served as a Member of Provincial Parliament with the Ontario Liberal Party from 1987 to 1990. She is a Member of the Order of Canada, Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame, the Ontario Sports Hall of Fame  and the International Swimming Hall of Fame.  

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  • Article

    Damian Warner

    Damian David George Warner, decathlete (born 4 November 1989 in London, Ontario). Damian Warner is one of the greatest decathletes of all time. At the 2020 Olympic Summer Games in Tokyo, he won the gold medal and set an Olympic record in decathlon with 9,018 total points. He is one of only four decathletes to reach 9,000 points in international competition. Warner also holds the men’s decathlon world records in the 100 m (10.12) and the 110 m hurdles (13.36) and previously held the world record in the long jump (8.28 m). He also won a bronze medal at the 2016 Olympic Summer Games, gold medals at the 2014 Commonwealth Games and 2015 and 2019 Pan American Games, and a record eight titles at the prestigious Hypo Meeting in Austria. In 2021, Warner was awarded the Lionel Conacher Award and the Lou Marsh Trophy and was inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame.

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  • Article

    Dan Halldorson

    Daniel Albert Halldorson, golfer (born 2 April 1952 in Winnipeg, MB; died 19 November 2015 in Cambridge, Illinois). Dan Halldorson was one of Canada’s best and most influential golfers. He won seven Canadian Tour events and finished in the Top 10 in 28 PGA Tour events, amassing career earnings just shy of US$1.2 million. He was named Canada’s professional golfer of the year in 1981 and 1983 and is the only Canadian golfer to be a part of two World Cup victories (1980 and 1985). He served as deputy director of the Mackenzie Tour – PGA Tour Canada from 2005 to 2011 and was a mentor to such Canadian golf greats as Mike Weir and Ian Leggatt. Halldorson is a member of the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame, the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame and the Professional Golfers’ Association (PGA) of Canada Hall of Fame.

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    Daniel Abraham Yanofsky

    Daniel Abraham Yanofsky, OC, chess grandmaster, lawyer, municipal official (born 26 March 1925 in Brody, Poland; died 5 March 2000 in Winnipeg, MB).

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  • Article

    Daniel Igali

    Daniel Igali began wrestling at the age of 16 and entered the Nigerian National Senior Tournament. Despite the absence of designated age groups, Daniel Igali won his division.

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  • Article

    Daniel Nestor

    Daniel Mark Nestor (born Danijel Nestorović), CM, tennis player, coach (born 4 September 1972 in Belgrade, Yugoslavia [now Serbia]). Daniel Nestor is one of Canada’s finest tennis players and one of the best doubles players of all time. One of the most decorated tennis players in the world, he competed in six Olympics and won 91 career doubles titles, including a gold medal in men’s doubles at the 2000 Olympic Summer Games — Canada's first and only Olympic medal in tennis. Nestor was the first Canadian to win at Wimbledon and the first men’s tennis player ever to win all four Grand Slam tournaments, the ATP Masters 1000 events, the ATP Tour Finals and an Olympic gold medal. A Member of the Order of Canada, he has been inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame, the Canadian Tennis Hall of Fame and Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame.

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  • Article

    Danielle Goyette

    Danielle Goyette, hockey player, coach (born 30 January 1966 in Saint-Nazaire d'Acton, QC). Goyette was a member of the Canadian women’s national hockey team from 1991 to 2008. In 172 international matches, she won eight world championships, twenty gold medals, and four silver medals. She is a member of the Quebec Sports Hall of Fame, Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame and the Hockey Hall of Fame. Goyette was named to the Order of Hockey in Canada in 2018.

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  • Article

    Darren Zack

    Darren Zack (nicknamed Z-Man), pitcher in fastpitch softball (born 9 August 1960 in Garden River First Nation, ON). Compared in his skill to Babe Ruth, Zack dominated fastpitch softball in the 1990s. In addition to many other athletic accomplishments, Zack helped Team Canada win the Pan American Games fastpitch medal in 1991, 1995 and 1999. Though a fearsome competitor, Zack is known for his modest and humble demeanor off the field. He is actively involved in his Garden River First Nation community and in encouraging youth involvement in sports. (See also Baseball.)

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  • Article

    Darryl Sittler

    Darryl Sittler, hockey player (b at Kitchener, Ont 18 Sept 1950). Darryl Sittler is considered one of the best-ever TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS players. Sittler began his hockey career with the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey Association in the 1960s.

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  • Article

    Dave Barr

    Dave Barr, golfer (b at Kelowna, BC 13 Apr 1952). Barr learned his golf while banging balls around a Kelowna schoolyard before joining the Kelowna Golf Club on a junior membership. He later attended Oral Roberts University on a golf scholarship, and turned professional in 1974.

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  • Article

    Dave Castilloux

    Dave Castilloux, boxer (b at Paspébiac, Qué 4 Jun 1916; d at Montréal 8 Mar 1994). When Dave Castilloux was only three years old, his parents moved to the United States, and in 1936, when the young fighter settled permanently in Montréal, he was already a seasoned BOXER.

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    Dave Cutler

    David Robert Stuart Cutler, football player (b at Biggar, Sask 17 Oct 1945). He joined the EDMONTON ESKIMOS in 1969 as a placement kicker and stayed there for 16 years until his retirement in 1984. Cutler was one of the last kickers to use the straight on kicking syle.

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