Benoit Gauthier went through an emotional roller coaster before receiving official confirmation that he qualified for his second Olympic Games. The problems started after Gauthier and his former partner in canoe doubles Francois Letourneau placed ninth at the world championships last September to automatically qualify for the Games.
However a few weeks later Letourneau announced he was quitting the sport.
The reason? His girlfriend issued an ultimatum that it was her or the
paddling career. Suddenly Gauthier had an Olympic berth in his pocket but
But last February, Tyler Lawlor a member of Canada's number-two C-2 squad
broke ranks with his partner. Gauthier and Lawlor combined forces however
they still needed to prove to the Canadian Olympic Association they could
be competitive internationally. They achieved that by placing 14th at the
season opening World Cup on the Olympic course in Sydney.
"We're not yet at the same level I was with Francois," said Gauthier, a father of two. "But we get along great and are improving. With Francois
his personal problems were beginning to mount and we were not progressing
as much anymore anyway."
Men's C-2 doubles: Benoit Gauthier, Lac-Alouette, Que., and Tyler Lawlor, Ottawa, finished ninth in qualifying, advanced to final.
Canadians Gauthier & Lawlor hitch a ride
Gauthier & Lawlor go through a gate
Gauthier and Lawlor hit a wave
2000 Games Canoe & Kayak Coverage