Le May Doan named Canada chef de mission for 2022 Winter Games

·1 min read
FILE PHOTO: Former Canadian speed skater Catriona Le May Doan carries the Olympic torches during the opening ceremony of the Vancouver Winter Olympic Games at the BC Place stadium in Vancouver
FILE PHOTO: Former Canadian speed skater Catriona Le May Doan carries the Olympic torches during the opening ceremony of the Vancouver Winter Olympic Games at the BC Place stadium in Vancouver

(Reuters) - Twice Olympic gold medallist speedskater Catriona Le May Doan was named Canada’s chef de mission for the 2022 Beijing Winter Games, the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) said on Tuesday.

A four-time Olympian, Le May Doan became the first Canadian to successfully defend an Olympic title when she skated to 500 metres gold at the 1998 Nagano Winter Games and again four years later at the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics.

She also twice served as Canada's flag bearer leading the team at the 2002 opening ceremony and 1998 closing ceremony.

"Catriona has huge credibility and respect in the sport and broader community, is an inspiring leader and is passionate about sport and the Olympic movement," said COC president Tricia Smith in a statement.

"Already a tremendous mentor to many athletes, she will be a great leader for Team Canada in Beijing 2022 as chef de mission.

"Between her vast experience in the world of sport, her integrity and the way she consistently lives the Olympic values of excellence, respect and friendship, we are all extremely fortunate and excited to have Catriona as chef for Beijing 2022."

Beijing is set to become the first city to host both a Summer and Winter Olympics.

After staging the 2008 Summer Games the city will complete the double when it hosts the Winter Olympics from Feb. 4-20, 2022.

(Reporting by Steve Keating in Toronto; Editing by Ken Ferris)