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Gymnastics Canada skipping Olympic qualifier because of COVID-19 concerns

OTTAWA — Gymnastics Canada will not send a team to a last-chance Tokyo Olympic qualifier because of COVID-19 concerns.

The organization announced Friday it will not send athletes to the 2021 Senior Pan American Championships in Rio de Janeiro from June 4-13.

The event was Canada’s last chance to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics in men’s artistic, women’s artistic and rhythmic gymnastics.

Canada had the opportunity to qualify one more athlete in men’s and women’s artistic, respectively, and one individual and one group in rhythmic gymnastics at the competition. 

The event also is a qualifier for trampoline, but there will be another qualification event in that discipline in Italy at a World Cup.

Canada also announced it will not send a team to the 2021 Junior Pan American Championships in Guadalajara, Mexico. 

“In this pandemic environment, an additional layer of concern is required when travelling internationally to competitions,” Ian Moss, CEO for Gymnastics Canada, said in a statement. 

“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.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 7, 2021.

The Canadian Press