Canada’s women’s swim team returns from Tokyo with impressive medal haul


Four members of Team Canada’s swim team are back on Canadian soil after picking up a heap of medals at the Tokyo Olympics.

Speaking to CP24 on Wednesday morning, swimmers Maggie Mac Neil, Kylie Masse, Taylor Ruck, and Kayla Sanchez described the “crazy whirlwind” trip to Tokyo amid a global pandemic and how they are celebrating their victories in the pool.

Mac Neil, who brought home Canada’s first gold medal in the Women’s 100M butterfly, reflected on her come-from-behind win.

“I really couldn’t see anyone from where I was out in the far lane so I guess that worked to my advantage. I could focus more on my own strategy,” she told CP24 on Wednesday morning.

“It’s honestly really special to bring back the first gold for Canada and I’m hoping there’s going to be many more in the last week or so.”

Mac Neil also took home silver in the Women’s 4x100m freestyle relay and bronze in the Women’s 4x100m medley relay.

She said she was excited to show people back home her medal haul.

“Yesterday was really exciting when we got back. I was able to show my neighbours and my family and my friends that came to greet me when I got home,” she said. “But it really hasn’t set in.”

Kylie Masse, who won two silver medals in the women’s 100M backstroke and 200M backstroke, and bronze in the 4×100m medley relay, said her experience competing internationally “all came together” in Tokyo.

“I believe I’ve grown so much I think over the years and at the international level, you begin to develop so much more confidence in yourself, the more experience you have on that stage,” she said.

“Just having my experience from Rio and then experience from the World Championships after that, I think it just provided me with so much confidence.”

For Taylor Ruck, who won silver in the Women’s 4x100m freestyle relay and bronze in the Women’s 4x100m medley relay, she said she is setting her sights on Paris in 2024.

“My path certainly hasn’t been linear and I think there have been ups and downs so maybe this isn’t really the high I was hoping for with these games but I was just so fortunate to be able to share the experience with such great relay team members,” she said.

“Honestly it was a blast.”

Kayla Sanchez, who also won silver in the Women’s 4x100m freestyle relay and bronze in the Women’s 4x100m medley relay, said the bond the relay team developed during the past year is unique to Canada.

“We trained together every day for the past year. It is all we did,” she said. “I think that is really special. Not a lot of countries have that where the relay teams really train together every day… It is so cool to come home and win medals together because you are just kind of bonded for life.”

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