Team Canada won gold medals in cycling and diving on Sunday at the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru. Kelsey Mitchell of Sherwood Park, Alberta won the gold medal in the women’s track cycling sprint, while Meaghan Benfeito of Montreal, Quebec and Caeli McKay of Calgary, Alberta won the gold medal in the women’s 10 metre synchronized diving.
In the women’s track cycling sprint, Mitchell had the fastest qualification time of 10.89 seconds. She then beat Genesis Lozano Tarira of Ecuador in the opening round, Joanne Rodriguez Hacohen of Guatemala in the quarterfinals, Jessica Salazar Valles of Mexico in the semifinals and Martha Bayona Pineda of Colombia in the gold medal race. Luz Gaxiola of Mexico won the bronze medal.
In women’s 10 metre synchronized platform diving, Benfeito, the three-time Olympic medalist and McKay posted a winning score of 320.64 points. Alejandra Orozco Loza and Gabriela Belem Agundez Garcia of Mexico won the silver medal with 307.38 points. Amelia Magana and Delaney Schnell of the United States won the bronze medal with 281.1 points. Benfeito and McKay reached the podium by 59.94 points over Anisley Garcia Navarro and Arlenys Garcia Gomez of Cuba, who finished in fourth place with a score of 260.7 points.
Benfeito’s three Olympic gold medals came at the 2012 Olympic Games in London and the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. She won the bronze medal in the women’s 10 metre synchronized diving at the 2012 Olympic Games in London and the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro with Roseline Filion of Laval, Quebec. Benfeito also won bronze in the women’s 10 metre platform diving competition at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
After Sunday, Canada has 19 gold medals, 36 silver medals and 24 bronze medals for 79 medals overall. They are second in the total standings behind the United States, who has 132 medals. The medals or Benfeito, McKay and Mitchell will give them confidence as they prepare for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.