Canadians will have access to over 5,500 hours of Olympic coverage during the 2012 London Games, from the Opening Ceremonies on Friday evening, to the Closing Ceremonies on August 12th.
About one billion viewers worldwide are expected to watch Oscar-winning film director Danny Boyle’s riff on Shakespeare’s The Tempest at London’s Olympic Stadium (a show that will reportedly feature thatched-roof cottages and live animals). There have been reports of “creative tension” with organizers, one thing is certain, they want to get the roughly £27-million ($42.8-million) curtain-raiser right.
Cycling: Men’s road race
Fresh off winning the prestigious Giro d’Italia, Ryder Hesjedal of Canada pulled out of the Tour de France early after a crash.
The Canadian team, appearing in the Olympics for the first time since the 2000 Games, opens preliminary round play against Russia.
Swimming: Men’s 400-metres freestyle
One of Canada’s greatest forces in the pool, Ryan Cochrane, won bronze in the 1,500 in 2008. He’ll challenge for a medal at this distance, too.
Judo: Men’s under-60 kilograms
Following in the footsteps of his father, a Brazilian Olympian in 1988, Canadian judoka Sergio Pessoa fights for the podium.
As group play continues, Canada takes on South Africa in its second match of the tournament.
Diving: Women’s synchronized three-metre springboard
Quebec divers Émilie Heymans and Jennifer Abel take aim at the podium.
Swimming: Men’s 4x100-metres freestyle relay
It’s expected to be a battle of swim world powers, as the Australians and Americans headline.
Cycling: Women’s road race
Multitalented summer and winter athlete Clara Hughes tries to break the record for the most career Olympic medals by a Canadian. (Hughes and speed-skater Cindy Klassen have six each.)
The tournament tips off with Team USA, packed with NBA stars, beginning defence of its Olympic gold medal with a preliminary round tilt against France.
Swimming: Men’s 200-metres freestyle
Rivals faceoff in the pool, as Ryan Lochte is primed to escape the shadow of fellow American Olympic superstar Michael Phelps.
Diving: Men’s synchronized 10-metre platform
It’s the first look at the 18-year-old who shoulders Great Britain’s weighty expectations, as Tom Daley teams with Peter Waterfield in the event.
Canada takes to the court again, with the crowd firmly against it, as it meets Olympic-host side Great Britain.
Gymnastics: Men’s all-around team
China has dominated men’s gymnastics for years, but this time, Japan and the United States appear ready to unseat it and take the coveted crown.
The grass of Wimbledon will challenge hard-serving Canadian Milos Raonic, who has three pro wins but none on grass. Daniel Nestor partners with Vasek Pospisil in doubles.
Diving: Women’s synchronized 10-metre platform
Canadians Roseline Filion and Meaghan Benfeito must get past the dominant Chinese for Olympic gold.
Gymnastics: Women’s all-around team
Eight teams of five gymnasts try to unseat the world champion Americans. The Canadians are led by Kristina Vaculik, Victoria Moors, Brittany Rogers, Dominique Pegg and Ellie Black.
Swimming: Men’s 200-metres butterfly
Michael Phelps of the United States is the favourite to win his signature race for the third consecutive Olympics.
Rowing: Men’s eight final
The Canadian boat will be hard-pressed to defend its Beijing gold after mass retirements and coach Mike Spracklen fell into disfavour. Beaten by Germany and Britain at the world championships, but still a podium threat.
Cycling: Women’s individual time trial
Former speed-skating star Clara Hughes hasn’t forgotten how to win on a bike, taking gold at the Pan American Games time trial and road race in 2011.
Diving: Men’s synchronized three-metre springboard
Can Alexandre Despatie synchronize his springboard dives with Reuben Ross after suffering a concussion and gash on his head from hitting the board in a June 12 warmup? He admits preparation was “not ideal.”
Swimming: Men’s 100-metres freestyle
Australia’s James (Missile) Magnussen owns the best time in the event this year by a half-second and wants to take down the record 46.91 seconds Cesar Cielo of Brazil set wearing a high-tech suit.
Judo: Women, Men