Canadian Record Holder Kayla Sanchez Announces Plans to Swim at UBC

Canadian national teamer and World Championship medalist Kayla Sanchez has announced that she will swim for the University of British Columbia:

Sanchez has been training at Swimming Canada’s High-Performance Center, Ontario for the last number of years under head coach Ben Titley. The Center has been a sprint hub for Canada, boasting a roster that includes Sanchez, Penny Oleksiak, Taylor Ruck, Rebecca Smith, Hanna Henderson, Josh Liendo, Yuri Kisil along with now-retired Michelle Toro, Chantal Van Landeghem, and Sandrine Mainville.

Following the summer of 2021, Sanchez will make the move to Vancouver in the fall and will begin attending the University of British Columbia in January 2022. Sanchez says that she’s “super excited to be a part of a varsity team as well as being able to compete in the ISL professionally.”

Sanchez makes reference to the fact that Canadian collegiate athletes are able to compete for their school in USports competition and the International Swimming League concurrently, as opposed to those swimming in the NCAA who are not permitted to swim professionally while in college.

Sanchez raced for Energy Standard during the 2019 ISL season and then transferred to the Toronto Titans for the team’s debut season in 2020.

Internationally, Sanchez has represented Canada several times over the past four years including at the World Junior Championships in 2017, the senior World Championships in both 2017 and 2019, the Commonwealth Games in 2018, and the Pan Pacific Championships in 2018.

At the World Junior Championships in 2017 Sanchez contributed to Canada’s sweep of the women’s relays and they collected gold in the 4×100 freestyle, 4×200 freestyle, and 4×100 medley relays. There, she also won silver in the 200 IM and bronze in the 100 freestyle.

In 2018, Sanchez won silver in the 4×100 and 4×200 freestyle relays at the Commonwealth Games and won bronze in both of those events at the Pan Pacific Championships. Most recently, she picked up another two relay bronze medals at the 2019 World Swimming Championships in the same two events.

Sanchez currently holds three short course Canadian records in the 50 freestyle (23.71), the 100 freestyle (51.45), and the 100 IM (57.80). Sanchez also holds the official world junior record in the 50 freestyle at a 23.98 from back in 2018.

In just a few weeks, Sanchez will vie for a spot on the Canadian Olympic team in the sprint freestyles. Canada has already named Taylor Ruck to the team for the 100 freestyle and Penny Oleksiak in the 200 freestyle but as those are both relay events, there are a number of spots up for grabs, as well as 2 spots in the 50 free. Sanchez is ranked first in the 50 freestyle among Canadian women during the Canadian Trials Qualification period of September 1, 2018, to the present. She is ranked 3rd in both the 100 and 200 freestyles behind Penny Oleksiak and Taylor Ruck.

Canadian Women’s Swimming Rankings (September 1, 2018 – April 2, 2021)

50 Freestyle LCM

  1. Kayla Sanchez (2019) – 25.31
  2. Hanna Henderson (2019) – 25.33
  3. Taylor Ruck / Maggie MacNeil (2019) – 25.40
  4. Sarah Fournier (2019) – 25.45

100 Freestyle LCM

  1. Taylor Ruck (2019) – 53.03
  2. Penny Oleksiak (2020) – 53.41
  3. Kayla Sanchez (2019) – 53.61
  4. Maggie MacNeil (2019) – 54.51
  5. Rebecca Smith (2019) – 54.82

200 Freestyle LCM

  1. Penny Oleksiak (2019) – 1:56.41
  2. Taylor Ruck (2019) – 1:56.97
  3. Kayla Sanchez (2019) – 1:57.32
  4. Emily Overholt (2019) – 1:57.97
  5. Emma O’Croinin (2019) – 1:58.64

Note: Among those top 3 ranked times, Sanchez has been under the FINA ‘A’ standard of 54.38 in the 100 freestyle while hovering just over the marks of 24.77 in the 50 and 1:57.28 in the 200.

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5 months ago

What’s the situation for USports athletes? If they are allowed to compete in ISL, can they get sponsors, agents, etc.?

Lil Swimmy
Reply to  DCSwim
5 months ago

I believe that they are able to be “pro” while also competing in the USports system.

Reply to  DCSwim
5 months ago

Yes to all. Competing as a USport athlete doesn’t prohibit competing in the ISL, taking prize money, having sponsors or an agent. National team or Sport Canada “carded” athletes also have their post-secondary tuition covered.

5 months ago

Sounds like a BET! Canadian swimming schools doing it right

5 months ago

Wow congrats to her on the cross country move, and congrats to the Tbirds, Coach Schoof at UBC and the HPC Van coaches!

Last edited 5 months ago by NJones
5 months ago

Go Cannucks