(June 3, 2019) Ottawa, ON – The Canada Games Council (CGC) has announced that Team Manitoba athlete Tyson Langelaar and Team Ontario athlete Claudia Heeney have been named the two recipients of the 2019 Canada Winter Games Roland Michener Award.
The Roland Michener Award is presented after each installment of the Canada Games to a young male and a young female Canada Games athlete who exemplifies leadership, cooperation and excellence during the Games. Each recipient will receive a $2,000 athletic bursary that is designed to provide financial assistance as they continue their promising athletic careers.
“The Canada Games are focused on developing the next generation of great Canadian athletes and leaders, and Tyson and Claudia are incredible examples of both,” said Evan Johnston, Chairman of the CGC. “Their talent and dedication to their sport is inspiring and matched only by their leadership both on and off the ice and we’re proud to add them to the distinguished list of Roland Michener Award winners.”
Langelaar competed in Men’s Long Track Speed Skating and took home an impressive four Gold medal's in the Men’s 500m, 1000m, 1500m, and Mass Start along with one Silver medal in the 5000m. These were his second Canada Games, and he was excited to compete again on an outdoor track.
“I was very happy to be back for my second CWG's in Red Deer, AB and being able to skate on natural outdoor ice again,” said Langelaar. “It was an advantage for me to skate outdoors due to most of my career learning how to skate in outdoor conditions before moving to Calgary full-time to train indoors at the Olympic Oval. The 2019 CWG’s was a surreal experience for myself by entering races hoping to medal, skating for my home province again, and celebrating my 20th birthday in the athlete village. Winning this award is extremely meaningful to my heart. Reading the list of previous winners and including myself alongside them is very motivating and encouraging for me to see how far I can go with my craft.”
Heeney competed in Women’s Short Track Speed Skating and capped off a busy week of competition by winning a Gold in the Women’s 3000m Points Race and a Silver medal in the 500m. She enjoyed the camaraderie of her Team Ontario teammates and the off-ice experiences that each Canada Games provides.
"Participating at the 2019 Canada Winter Games was surreal and highly rewarding,” said Heeney. “Arriving at the venue for the first time with a long competition ahead was daunting, but living with my teammates, watching the other sports, cheering on team Ontario and skating against the best in Canada proved to be an amazing experience. I will continue to value the bonds created among my teammates as we supported each other through difficult races, success, injuries and new experiences. I am honoured to be selected from the many deserving athletes to receive this award, and plan to use the bursary to support my increased training this coming season. I will be moving to Montreal after I graduate this year to train on the National Development team and I am very excited to be taking this next step in my athletic career.”