Despite concerns and restrictions over COVID-19, Kingston Olympic sailor Ali ten Hove said Tokyo was still an incredible experience.
She teamed up with Mariah Millen of Toronto to compete in the 49er FX class. They finished 16th overall in a peloton of 21.
“Our goal was to finish in the top ten, but we gained valuable experience as we progressed,” said ten Hove.
The 25-year-old Kingston Yacht Club member was back home in Portsmouth Olympic Harbor, mingling with sailors competing in the annual CORK Regatta.
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“It was an incredible experience,” ten Hove said of his adventure in Tokyo.
“It really touched me before the first race. I started to cry with joy because I realized that our dream of competing in the Olympics has finally come true. I quickly pulled myself together and entered my fighter pilot mode.
Millen and ten Hove had good races in Tokyo and also had frustrating performances. In good times and bad, ten Hove was able to feel the love and support of her family and friends, she said.
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“I can honestly say that I could hear and feel the people back home cheering us on. The Kingston community has really supported us and we couldn’t be more grateful. “
Millen and ten Hove bonded in 2016 and quickly rose through the ranks. They won the Canadian Championship in 2017 and two years later they finished 4th at the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru.
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In just three years, the next goal is to represent Canada again at the 2024 Summer Games in Paris.
“We were inspired to continue the process and bring this Olympic medal home,” ten Hove concluded.
“We believe that our partnership is very strong and that we still have a lot of potential as a team. We plan to improve and qualify for France in 2024.
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