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Canadian Notebook

Why Canada's coaches are leaving home Add to ...

Canada used to be an importer of coaching talent to get better results in sport.

After a successful Winter Olympics -- and dominance in some summer events -- we've become an exporter. Other countries -- at least four of them -- are seeking our success and the coaches that led to it.

It's not just where you'd think, in the national sport of hockey.

Russia's Olympic bobsledders are wooing retired two-time medalist Pierre Lueders -- named a national coach for Canada this summer -- to help them for the Sochi Games in 2014. In short track speedskating, four-time Olympic medalist Eric Bedard is coaching in Dresden, Germany and Guy Thibault is coaching members of the U.S. national team.

Also fled in the diaspora: diving coach Hui Tong, former coach of Canada's national team, went to Australia to head up their Institute of Sport diving program. He was about 10 years in Canada and he's become a top coach Down Under, with four Olympic medalists.

The Brits have been picking off some top Canadian coaches in track and field: Kevin Tyler, former coach of world medalist Tyler Christopher -- and the former 400-metre star of Canada went nowhere this year without him.

Derek Evely was coaching hurdler Adam Kunkel, a Pan Am Games medalist and world finalist. He also coached Canada's top 400-metre woman, Carline Muir. He's at one of Britain's top track universities, Loughbrough, where Sebastian Coe trained.

Joel Filliol, one of the coaches who helped triathlete Simon Whitfield to a 2008 silver in Beijing, is national triathlon coach in Britain.

Peter Eriksson, the Swedish-born, coach who turned Chantal Petitclerc into a world beater in a wheelchair, is now helping British paralympians do the same thing.

Meanwhile, Lascelles Brown, the Jamaica-born brakeman who won, Olympic medals for Canada in Turin and Vancouver, has taken the back of Monaco's bobsleigh to train with their Sochi prospects.

Canadian cycling's B2ten shot

Private financial supporters have been willing to step up. The Canadian Cycling Association will partner with the private funding body B2ten in a program that will focus on women's national track cycling, the CCA said Wednesday.

B2ten will provide the team with training resources to prepare for the 2012 London Olympic Games -- Canada can't furnish international level facilities -- and for analysis and testing of athletes not currently on the national team.

Six athletes, who are not currently on the national team, have been targeted through initial off-track testing and assessment. These athletes will participate in a series of training camps in Los Angeles in December and January.

Under the partnership, the Canadian track cycling team also will train in Los Angeles until the summer of 2012.

The expertise and resources being brought to bear in women's team pursuit allow us to create a training environment for the national team that was not previously possible, said Jacques Landry, CCA high performance director and head coach.

Cycling around the world and back

Canada's track cycling team has four World Cup events on four different continents, capped off by the 2011 UCI Track World Championships in the Netherlands. Eight cyclists will travel to Melbourne, Australia, to hit the track of the first World Cup event of season from December 2-4, 2010.

We spent quality time as a team preparing for the season in a series of training camp this summer, said Richard Wooles, head coach of the Canadian track cycling team, in a statement.

Our training data has shown an improvement between 3 and 10 per cent in performance on average.

The team is headlined by two-time world champion and five-time Canadian champion Tara Whitten. The UCI Track World Championships will be held in Apeldoorn, Netherlands, March 23-27.

The four World Cup events of 2011 are in Melbourne, Cali, Columbia, Beijing and Manchester, England. The national cyclists headed for Melburne are: Tara Whitten of Edmonton; Laura Brown of Calgary; Stephanie Roorda of Calgary; Monique Sullivan of Calgary; Zach Bell of Watson Lake, Yukon; Travis Smith of Calgary; Joseph Veloce of Fonthill, Ont.; Stephane Cossette of Chicoutimi, Québec.

New drug testing introduced

Canadian athletes may be asked for a blood sample in addition to a urine specimen when they get asked for an anti-doping test.

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