World champion curler Lisa Weagle to oversee the Canadian team at the Youth Olympic Games

Canadian Olympians who are winter YOG alumni include ski cross racer Reece Howden of Cultus Lake, BC, Toronto alpine ski racer Ali Nullmeyer and Vancouver luger Natalie Corless.

Weagle is experienced in the multi-sport Games environment having also served as stand-in for Jennifer Jones at last year’s Winter Olympics in Beijing.

“My sporting journey has taken me to places I never even imagined,” Weagle told The Canadian Press.

“Now is the opportunity to pay it back with the next generation of athletes, young Olympic athletes.”

While Homan’s team failed to clinch an Olympic podium in Pyeongchang, Weagle said he was eager to return and coach young Canadian athletes from January 19 to February 1, 2024, in Gangwon province.

“It really feels full circle to be back,” Weagle told The Canadian Press.

“I love making some new memories. There will be nostalgia going back to those places and being in the same places. I really liked my experience.

“With this role, I can be the mentor, be the cheerleader, be the spokesperson for the athletes and let them focus on their performances.

“I can be there for them as a chef and I can also relate because through my sports career I have stood on the podium at world championships, but also not medaled at the Olympics, so I really experienced this whole roller-coaster of emotions. That.”

The Weagle earned a full set of world championship medals playing for Homan with gold at Beijing in 2017, silver in 2014 and bronze in 2013.

He stepped up to the coaching ranks, but remained a competitive curler.

Weagle and John Epping rank fourth in Canada in mixed doubles. They will compete in the national championships March 21-26 in Sudbury, Ont.

Weagle coaches Brett Gallant and Jocelyne Peterman at the 2022 world mixed doubles championships in Geneva, Switzerland.

She also coached Kaitlyn Lawes’ wild card team in the Canadian women’s championships which ended Sunday in Kamloops, BC

Weagle, who works with a private Ottawa communications company, is also involved in the national wheelchair curling program as a trainer and communications manager.

“It’s been a bit of a journey for me over the last year, just trying to figure out what I’m going to do next and where I fit in, and saying yes to all kinds of different opportunities,” he says.

“This is one that really excites me.”

Gangwon 2024 will be the fourth edition of Winter YOG and the first in Asia. The athletes will compete in seven sports with a total of 81 matches.

Canada sent 78 athletes to YOG Winter 2020 in Lausanne, Switzerland.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 1, 2023.

Donna Spencer, Canadian Press

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