TORONTO, ON – SEPTEMBER 20, 2017: Visa (NYSE:V) today announced its global Team Visa roster for the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018, comprised of over 40 Olympians and Paralympians from 17 countries, including Mark McMorris, Travis Gerrits, Charles Hamelin, Mac Marcoux, Spencer O’Brien, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir. This team of Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls represent a diverse group of individuals representing a range of sports, from snowboarding and speed skating to ski jumping and figure skating.
A global Olympic partner for more than 30 years and Paralympic partner since 2003, Visa founded its Team Visa program in 2000, with the aim of providing athletes with the tools, resources and support they need to achieve their lifelong dreams, both on and off the field of competition, regardless of their origin or background. Today, Team Visa is unified by athletes who embody Visa’s values of acceptance, partnership and inclusion, with athletic talent matched equally by their character.
“We are excited to welcome all of our Olympic and Paralympic athletes to Team Visa and we think this roster is the perfect embodiment of what the Visa brand stands for, as these athletes push boundaries every day in everything they do,” said Brenda Woods, Vice President of Marketing, Visa Canada. “Team Visa athletes remain at the heart of Visa and we are excited to cheer them on in their pursuit of Olympic and Paralympic Gold in PyeongChang.”
The following Canadian athletes officially joined Team Visa ahead of PyeongChang 2018:
- Mark McMorris (Canada, Snowboard – Slopestyle & Big Air): After a near-fatal crash in backcountry British Columbia in March 2017, Mark’s determination to reach the top of the podium at PyeongChang 2018 is what is fueling his recovery to push himself beyond the limits. Given that he won bronze at Sochi 2014 just two weeks after suffering a fractured rib, Mark is determined to defy the odds once again at the Olympic Winter Games, and bring home Gold in the inaugural big air event – arguably his best event.
- Travis Gerrits (Canada, Freestyle Skiing – Aerials): 2013 World Championships Silver medalist and Olympic Winter Games Sochi 2014 veteran, Travis Gerrits is a self-proclaimed adrenaline seeker, fueling off an addiction to the feeling of weightlessness as he flies 50 feet off the kicker. Gerrits recently opened up about his bipolar diagnosis, and credits his diagnosis as motivation for the upcoming Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018.
- Charles Hamelin (Canada, Short Track Speed Skating): Throughout his career, the four-time World Record breaker has captured multiple international titles, including 32 World Championship medals in the ISU World Short Track Speed Skating Championships, with 10 gold among them. Already with three Olympic Gold medals and one Silver, Hamelin is three medals away from becoming the most decorated Olympian in Canada's history.
- Mac Marcoux (Canada, Para alpine skiing): Mac Marcoux began skiing at the age of four and entered his first Para alpine skiing event at 13 where he captured the attention of Alpine Canada. Just three years later at the age of 16, Marcoux took the slopes of Rosa Khutor by storm, winning Gold in the men’s giant slalom visually impaired, and bronze in both downhill and super G in his Paralympic Winter Games debut at Sochi 2014 with guide Robin Femy. Adding to this, Mac has achieved career success with eight World Championship medals, four Crystal Globes and 34 World Cup Podiums. Marcoux is an avid outdoor enthusiast and spends his free time fishing, four-wheeling, snowmobiling and catching up with family and friends.
- Tessa Virtue & Scott Moir (Canada, Figure Skating - Ice Dance): Twenty years after beginning their skating careers together, Tessa Virtue & Scott Moir will be competing in their third Olympic Winter Games at PyeongChang 2018. Together, the highly decorated Ice Dancing pair have achieved 11 World Championship medals, 7 Four Continents medals, and 24 Grand Prix medals. They also have attained three Olympic medals, including the Gold medal they won in front of their home crowd at Vancouver 2010. At PyeongChang 2018, Canada’s favorite duo will look to build upon their double Silver medal effort from the Olympic Winter Games Sochi 2014, and return to the top of the podium.
- Spencer O’Brien (Canada, Snowboard - Slopestyle & Big Air): Growing up near the mountains of British Columbia, Spencer O’Brien first hit the slopes at the age of two. Coming off of her 2013 World Championships Gold medal, O’Brien set her sights on winning Gold in the Olympic Winter Games debut of slopestyle at Sochi 2014. In the weeks leading up to the Games, the five-time X Games medalist was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. Despite the setback, she was able to advance to the slopestyle finals, but finished in 12th place due to some technical missteps. She is one of only a few Olympians coming from Canadian First Nations, belonging to the Haida and Kwakwakw’wakw peoples of British Columbia.
Additional Team Visa athletes from around the globe include:
- USA: Mikaela Shiffrin (USA, Alpine Skiing), Chloe Kim (USA, Snowboard – Halfpipe), Gus Kenworthy (USA, Freestyle Skiing – Slopestyle & Halfpipe), Hilary Knight (USA, Ice Hockey), Sarah Hendrickson (USA, Ski Jumping), Maggie Voisin (USA, Freestyle Skiing – Slopestyle), David Wise (USA, Freestyle Skiing – Halfpipe), Jamie Anderson (USA, Snowboard – Slopestyle & Big Air), Oksana Masters (USA, Para cross-country skiing & Para biathlon).
- Not Competing: Meryl Davis (USA, Figure Skating), Charlie White (USA, Figure Skating)
- Retired: Angela Ruggiero (USA, Ice Hockey)
- Asia: Lee, Sang-Hwa (South Korea, Speed Skating), Park Seung-Hi (South Korea, Speed Skating), Beibei Chu (China, Para cross-country skiing), Han Cong (China, Figure Skating), Sui Wenjing (China, Figure Skating), Han Tianyu (China, Short Track Speed Skating), Zhang Yiwei (China, Snowboard – Halfpipe), Sara Takanashi (Japan, Ski Jumping), Noriaki Kasai (Japan, Ski Jumping), Park, Caroline (South Korea, Ice Hockey), Lee, Sang-Ho (South Korea, Snowboard – Parallel Slalom), Lim, Hyo-Jun (South Korea, Short Track Speed Skating), Jung, Seung-Hwan (South Korea, Para ice hockey) , Michael Christian Martinez (Philippines, Figure Skating)
- Europe: Kamil Stoch (Poland, Ski Jumping), Ester Ledecka (Czech Republic, Alpine Skiing & Snowboard – Parallel Slalom), Roope Tonteri (Finland, Snowboard – Slopestyle & Big Air), Elise Christie (Great Britain, Short Track Speed Skating), Billy Morgan (Great Britain, Snowboard– Slopestyle & Big Air), Peter Fill (Italy, Alpine Skiing), Marcus Kleveland (Norway, Snowboard– Slopestyle & Big Air), Maxim Trankov (Russia, Figure Skating), Tatiana Volosozhar (Russia, Figure Skating), Stina Nilsson (Sweden, Cross-Country Skiing), Patrick Burgener (Switzerland, Snowboard – Halfpipe)
- Africa: Brolin Mawejje (Uganda, Snowboard – Slopestyle & Big Air)
- South America: Dominique Ohaco (Chile, Freestyle Skiing – Slopestyle)
Tickets are currently available for purchase directly through the PyeongChang 2018 ticketing website for residents of Korea (including registered Non-Koreans residing in Korea) or through PyeongChang 2018’s Authorized Ticket Resellers for international residents. Starting in November, tickets will also be available on sale at outlets and main ticket centres in Korea. For more information on PyeongChang 2018 tickets, please visit: https://tickets.pyeongchang2018.com.
For additional information on Team Visa, follow along at @VisaCA on Twitter, @visaca on Instagram, and @VisaCanada on Facebook and visit www.visa.ca.