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Canada’s men’s artistic gymnastics team qualifies for Olympics

First time team will compete in Olympics since 2008
Canada’s Rene Cournoyer competes on the floor exercise during Men’s Qualifications at the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships in Antwerp, Belgium, Sunday, Oct.1, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Virginia Mayo

Canada is sending a men’s gymnastics team to the Olympics for the first time since 2008.

Needing a top-12 finish in the team qualification to clinch an Olympic berth, Canada placed fourth at the world artistic gymnastics championships on Sunday to secure their spot.

The group of René Cournoyer, Félix Dolci, William Émard, Jayson Rampersad, Zachary Clay and Yanni Chronopoulos will be headed to the 2024 Paris Games thanks to their 249.260 score across six events.

“Leading up to these world championships, the main goal was securing a team spot to the Olympic Games,” Cournoyer said. “Mission accomplished.”

“There is so much significance to this fourth-place finish and I am so proud of all my teammates,” he added.

Cournoyer is the lone member of the team with prior Olympic experience. The Repentigny, Que., native competed at the Tokyo Games in 2021.

Canada now looks ahead to competing in the team final on Tuesday.

Japan (258.228), the U.S. (254.528), Great Britain (254.193), Germany (248.862), Italy (248.796), Switzerland (248.192) and China (248.163) will also be in the final.

Canada’s women’s team advanced to the Olympics at the 2022 worlds.

The squad of three-time Olympian Ellie Black, Laurie Denommee, Sydney Turner, Denelle Pedrick and Emma Spence earned Canada’s first-ever team medal at worlds with a bronze.