Air Canada bringing athletes home
Air Canada has begun flying members of Canada’s Olympic team back to Canada from the Rio 2016 Olympic Games this evening, with flights arriving at Toronto Pearson airport early in the morning of Tuesday, August 23.
August 23, 2016 By Air Canada
“As an Official Sponsor of Canada’s Olympic and Paralympic teams, we are proud to play our part by safely transporting competitors, team officials and their supporters home to Canada from the Rio Olympic Games. Like all Canadians, we at Air Canada have cheered our athletes and been inspired by the skills and sportsmanship they have demonstrated during the games,” said Benjamin Smith , President, Passenger Airlines at Air Canada.
The athletes will return to Toronto on Tuesday August 23 on flight Air Canada AC091 from Sao Paulo due to arrive at 5:40 a.m. and Air Canada AC1099 due to arrive at 5:15 a.m. from Rio de Janeiro . More athletes and team members will arrive on Wednesday, August 24 , with Air Canada flight AC091 due to land at 5:00 a.m. and Air Canada flight AC099 from Rio de Janeiro at 5:15 a.m.
Transporting Canada’s team to the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro was a large logistical undertaking requiring the dedicated efforts of hundreds of Air Canada employees. Here are some key facts about Air Canada’s involvement:
- Air Canada has been a proud partner and the official airline of Canada’s Olympic Team since 2006 and its Paralympic Team since 2007;
- In total, Air Canada transported approximately 690 athletes, coaches and support staff with the Canadian Team to Rio.
- Air Canada’s #FlyTheFlag initiative struck a chord with Canadians keen to show their pride throughout the games and achieved a peak of 500 mentions per hour on social media;
- In 2012, the Air Canada Athlete of the Year Award was inaugurated. It is presented annually to an exceptional Canadian athlete who excels in leadership and excellence in an Olympic sport, while inspiring the athletes of future generations. Canoeist-kayaker Mark de Jonge , was voted the winner, with pole vaulter Shawnacy Barber and high jumper Derek Drouin the other finalists for the 2015 award. Canadians will be invited to vote for the 2016 Air Canada Athlete of the Year Award later this year.