A 17-year-old Simcoe resident has been invited to the finals of the Canadian Olympic Committee’s talent search.
Max Wildman, a Grade 12 student at Simcoe Composite School, will be attending the RBC Training Grounds on Sept. 14.
This final event will be host to 100 athletes chosen out of a pool of 2,000 that attended the qualifiers. Of those 100, 30 of the athletes will be picked to receive funding and resources to pursue their Olympic goals.
At the final event athletes have their measurements taken, and then perform speed, power, strength, and endurance tests.
“I want to do the best that I can,” said Wildman. “I want to try to get top 30, that’s what I want to do.”
To achieve that goal Wildman has been practising for each individual test in which he will be participating.
The qualifier Wildman attended was in Scarborough, and he caught the attention of Rowing Canada, even though he has never competed in rowing before.
“I wasn’t expecting that at all, but a woman from Rowing Canada gave my mom her card and said I’d be good for rowing,” said Wildman.
Wildman then went to Brock University to be put through more training before he was accepted to the finals.
“It feels amazing. When I got the phone call I was ecstatic, I was so happy,” he said.
Wildman was at a cottage with his family and friends when he received the voicemail saying he was invited. He was able to hear his acceptance with his brother and parents by his side.
“We listened to it and everyone was so happy.”
Originally going to the qualifiers as a body builder, and football and basketball player, Wildman has had to change his workouts to fit the needs of a rower.
“I changed my workouts in the gym,” the athlete said. “More endurance, heavier weights, trying to build mass.”
At the event the young athletes will have the chance to meet Olympic champions Justin Kripps, Patrick Chan, and Penny Oleksiak.
“I’m excited to meet all of them, I can’t wait.”
The complete list of athletes and more information about the event can be found at rbctrainingground.ca