16-year-old Penny Oleksiak made her mark on the 2016 Olympic Games, bringing home four medals to her nation of Canada. Among them was a gold as part of a stunning tie in the women’s 100m freestyle with American Simone Manuel, both of whom upset a stacked field including current world record holder Cate Campbell of Australia.
Organizers of the 2016 FINA World Short Course Championships to be held in Windsor beginning December 6th are hoping that Oleksiak’s luck will rub off on the newly constructed pol at the WFCU Centre. A lucky Canadian dollar coin called a loonie, from the year 2000 when Oleksiak was born, has been placed beneath the liner of the competition pool.
Peter Knowles, Executive Director of the Windsor organizing committee says, “We hope it provides all the luck we need both from a Canadian team perspective and from Windsor on the world stage.” This is the first time Canada has hosted the short course world championships event.
The ‘lucky loonie’ tradition has been a mainstay of the Canadian culture, including back in 2002 when the Winter Olympic Games were held in Salt Lake City. Team Canada’s hockey team beat Team USA in both men’s and women’s games for the gold after an ice crew embedded Canadian loonie under the faceoff dot at the competition site.