Canadian swimmers Nadine Williams & Xavier Desharnais qualify for Olympic Trials


Open water swimmers Nadine Williams and Xavier Desharnais qualify for Olympic Trials
April, 24, 2012
CANCUN, Mexico – Nadine Williams of Sherwood Park, Alta., and Xavier Desharnais of LaSalle, Que., earned berths for the Olympic qualifying event in 10 kilometre open water swimming after posting the top Canadian performances Tuesday at a FINA World Cup race.

The women’s 10 kilometre event was a very physical race and Williams, who placed 13th, was pleased with how she managed her race.
‘’It was a violent race for sure,’’ said Williams. ‘’But for the first time I was very comfortable in the pack, and at times even felt easy. I made very clear decisions in the race and it definitely helped today.’’

Williams’ coach, Chris Nelson recapped his thoughts of her race.

‘’She executed the tactics of her race very well,’’ said Nelson. ‘’I am most pleased with how well she swam in the pack. She was only five metres from the lead and looked comfortable in the top-six all the way until the last two kilometres. She never lost sight of the top pack, and finished in personal best position. We are very happy to be heading to Portugal on this note.’’

The Olympic trials in open water swimming are scheduled for June 10th in Portugal where the final 15 positions will be finalized for London for the men and women.

On the men’s side, Desharnais took 15th spot but was hoping to fare better.

‘’It’s okay,’’ said Desharnais. ‘’I made a few mistakes and I know I can finish several positions higher. It will be better in Portugal.’’

Earlier this year Richard Weinberger of Victoria and Zsofia Balazs of Toronto also qualified for the Olympic trials. Weinberger, earned silver and bronze at the Word Cup stops in Argentina and Brazil in February.

Canada sent an impressive contingent of young open water swimmers to the race in Cancun as well. They were Jade Dusablon of Quebec City, Eloise Labrecque of Jonquiere, Que., Leena Struzina of Whitby, Ont., and Beatrice Pineau of Boischatel, Que., for the women; and Aimeson King of Victoria, Phillipe Guertin of Montreal and Mitchell Peters of Sackville, N.S., for the men.

Canada hosts the inaugural World Junior Open Water Championships this August in Welland, Ont.