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Mark Oldershaw (born February 7, 1983) is a Canadian sprint canoeist. Oldershaw won the bronze medal in the C-1 1000 m at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. He is a third generation Canadian Olympic canoer, fifth family member to compete at the Olympics and the first member of the family to win an Olympic medal. He was a double Junior World Champion in the C-1 500 m and C-1 1,000 m in 2001.

Mark Oldershaw
Mark Oldershaw - 2012 Olympic Heroes Parade.jpg
Oldershaw at the 2012 Olympic Heroes Parade in Toronto, September 2012
Personal information
Born (1983-02-07) February 7, 1983 (age 36)
Burlington, Ontario
Height1.86 m (6 ft 1 in)
Weight94 kg (207 lb)
Event(s)C-1 1000m, C-1 500m


Oldershaw was born in Burlington, Ontario. He first rose to prominence as a double gold-medalist at the Junior World Championships in 2001, winning both the C-1 500 m and C-1 1,000 m events. However a few years later a tumour was discovered in his right hand which was his prominent paddling hand. This required two surgeries, damaged a nerve and caused him chronic pain.[1] This also caused him to miss qualifying for the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens.[1] Oldershaw did qualify for the 2008 Summer Olympics, there at Beijing he suffered further disappointment, missing the final of the C-1 500 m event.[1]

Despite these disappointments he continued on in his career and his goal of Olympic glory. At the 2011 World Championships in Szeged, Hungary Oldershaw came 5th in the C-1 1,000 m. He then qualified as part of Canada's team for the 2012 Summer Olympics,[2] he won a bronze medal in the C-1 1,000 m event.[3] After his penultimate Olympic moment he stated that "I am so happy. I just can’t even put it into words right now. I’m just so proud to represent Canada. The whole race I was just staring at the nose of my boat, there’s a big maple leaf on it, and it’s just such a good feeling."[1]

On July 1, 2015 Oldershaw was named the flagbearer of Canada at the 2015 Pan American Games opening ceremony.[4]


Mark Oldershaw at the 2015 Burlington's Sound of Music Festival, participating as part of the 2015 Pan American Games torch relay.

He is a son of Olympian canoeist Scott Oldershaw—who is also his coach at the Burloak Canoe Club[5]—and grandson of Olympian canoeist Bert Oldershaw, making him the third generation and fifth member of his family to compete in the Olympics.[6][7] Oldershaw is also close friends with Olympic teammate Adam van Koeverden and trains together with him at the Burloak Canoe Club.[1][8]


  1. ^ a b c d e Christie Blatchford (August 8, 2012). "Canada's Mark Oldershaw's bronze medal honours family's Olympic legacy in canoe". Montreal Gazette.
  2. ^ Dave Feschuk (July 24, 2012). "'Lopsided' canoeist Mark Oldershaw hungry for redemption". Toronto Star. Retrieved July 26, 2012.
  3. ^ Piercy, Justin (2012-08-08). "Canadian paddlers van Koeverden, Oldershaw win silver, bronze". CBC Sports. Toronto: Retrieved 2012-08-08.
  4. ^ Hossain, Asif (1 July 2015). "Mark Oldershaw to lead Team Canada at TO2015 as flag bearer". Canadian Olympic Committee. Retrieved 1 July 2015. External link in |website= (help)
  5. ^ "New Oldershaw at helm of Burloak Canoe Club". Burlington Post. January 26, 2008. Retrieved July 30, 2012.
  6. ^ Sean Fitz-Gerald (June 15, 2012). "Mark Oldershaw continues a three-generation family tradition at Olympics". National Post. Archived from the original on October 7, 2012. Retrieved July 30, 2012.
  7. ^ Brian Cazeneuve (July 26, 2012). "Projected Medal Count". Inside Olympics. Sports Illustrated. Retrieved July 26, 2012.
  8. ^ Justin Piercy (August 8, 2012). "Canadian paddlers van Koeverden, Oldershaw win silver, bronze". CBC Sports.

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