Summer McIntosh and Josh Liendo Named Canadian Swimmers of the Year (2022)

by Ben Dornan 7

March 31st, 2023 Canada, International, News

Swimming Canada has been announcing the recipients of its major awards for 2022 throughout the month of March. They recently named Summer McIntosh and Josh Liendo as the Swimmers of the Year. Additionally, Félix Cowan and Ella Jansen were awarded the breakout swimmer awards, while Ryan Mallette was named Coach of the Year. Aurelie Rivard and Nicolas-Guy Turbide won the Swimmer of the Year awards for the Paralympic program.

McIntosh made headlines at several meets last year, dominating the pool in a wide range of strokes and distances. The height of her achievements came in Budapest during the 2022 World Championships where she took gold in both the 200 butterfly and 400 IM, silver in the 400 freestyle, and bronze in the 4×200 freestyle relay.

At her second national team meet of the summer, McIntosh took home another six medals including gold in the 200 and 400 IM, silver in the 400 free, 4×100 medley, 4×200 freestyle, and bronze in the 4×100 freestyle. McIntosh ended 2022 as a world junior record holder in the 200 freestyle (1:54.79), 200 butterfly (2:05.20), 200 IM (2:08.70), and 400 IM (4:28.61).

Liendo was the most successful Canadian man at the 2022 World Championships, taking double bronze individually in the 100 freestyle and 100 butterfly. He also helped Canada to its silver medal finish in the mixed 4×100 freestyle relay. At the Commonwealth Games, Josh Liendo swam to victory in the 100 butterfly, to bronze in the 50 freestyle, and took two more bronze medals in the men’s and mixed 4×100 freestyle relays.

Liendo also raced the 50 freestyle at the World Championships in 2022 and despite missing the podium, set a new Canadian record in the event with a 21.61. A few months before his big summer meets, Liendo also downed the 100 butterfly national record with a 50.88 at Canadian Trials.

Both Liendo and McIntosh were coached by Mallette in the earlier part of 2022 before they both moved to Florida. Other swimmers that Mallette is credited as having coached in 2022 include national teamers Kylie Masse, Finlay Knox, and Javier Acevedo. Mallette took over for Ben Titley as the head coach of the High Performance Centre – Ontario in 2022.

On the topic of being named Coach of the Year, Mallette said the following:

“I’m just part of the team,” “I work with a group of fantastic people, so to me I think about everyone I’ve worked with this past year who has been able to make this possible.”

“Coaching is never in solidarity, it’s a collaborative thing. I rely on other coaches; I rely on other athletes to help everyone get better. The more you collaborate, the more you succeed. When I think back on last year, it took a village to achieve a few of those results. Our goals for the centre are to help athletes reach podiums and maintain that reliably and repeatedly.”

Two vets of the Paralympic program picked up Swimmer of the Year awards as well in Aurelie Rivard and Nicolas-Guy Turbide. Rivard, winning the award for her sixth time, had a successful year and won medals at both the 2022 World Championships and Commonwealth Games. The 5-time Olympic medalist won gold in both the S10 50 and 100 freestyles at Worlds, as well as bronze in the 100 backstroke. At the Commonwealth Games, she took silver in the 200 IM.

Turbide swam at the same two meets, topping the podium in the 100 backstroke at the 2022 World Championships and in the 50 freestyle at the Commonwealth Games. This is the second year in a row that Turbide has won the Swimmer of the Year award and his fifth time since 2016.

The 2022 Swimming Canada Breakout Performer of the Year from the Paralympic Program was Félix Cowan who raced for Canada at the 2022 World Championships. Cowan swam his way to a fourth place finish in the S8 50 freestyle, hitting a 27.63 to narrowly miss bronze (27.56). That time for Cowan was also a new national record in the event. He also broke Canadian records as a member of the 20 points 4×50 medley relay and the 34 points 4×100 freestyle.

The other Breakout Performer of the Year for 2022 was Ella Jansen who made her senior national team debut last year. Jansen missed out on qualifying for World Championships but was named to the Commonwealth Games team. Jansen walked away with two medals at that meet, contributing to Canada’s 4×200 freestyle relay silver and mixed 4×100 freestyle bronze. Jansen also just missed the podium in the women’s 400 IM, swimming a 4:40.17 for 5th behind England’s Freya Colbert (4:39.80) and Scotland’s Katie Shanahan (4:39.37).

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Stephen Strange
2 months ago

Does the sky appear blue?

Emily Se-Bom Lee
Reply to  Stephen Strange
2 months ago

no. reminder that swimswam gave macneil their award last year

Reply to  Stephen Strange
2 months ago

To be fair, I probably would have given it to MacNeil. Two individual WRs, three individual golds at short course worlds.

But moving forward I suspect Summer has this locked down.

2 months ago

I totally thought this was for 2023 and Swimming Canada is just like “We know you’re gonna crush it this year let’s just go ahead and give you the award 3 months in”

Gummy Shark
2 months ago

Summer “The Lunch Lady” McInstosh is the GOAT for serving up her competition!

Reply to  Gummy Shark
2 months ago

this nickname is growing on me

Tracy Kosinski
2 months ago

Congrats Josh and Summer! No doubt you are!