Despatie wins Canada’s 400th gold medal in Commonwealth Games history


Wed March 22

Diver Alexandre Despatie (Montreal, QC) now has another sports milestone on his resume: winning Canada’s 400th gold medal in Commonwealth Games history.
The first place finish came tonight in Melbourne, Australia, in the 1m Springboard Final at the XVIII Commonwealth Games.

Despatie’s medal was Canada's 12th gold of these Games and the 400th for Canada since the first Games in 1930 in Hamilton, Ontario. Despatie, 21, was the defending Commonwealth Games champion, having captured the title four years ago in Manchester, England.

At the inaugural Games, which were then called the British Empire Games, Canada won 54 medals, 20 of them gold. Canada is also only one of six countries to have attended all of the Commonwealth Games since that time.

Canada’s biggest medal yield came in Victoria, BC, in 1994, when Team Canada captured 131 medals, including 41 gold. However, it was the 1986 Games in Edinburgh, Scotland, which produced the biggest tally of first-place finishes when 51 of Canada’s 116 medals were gold.

Noteworthy multiple gold medalists include Graham Smith, who won six medals in swimming in 1978 in Edmonton, Alberta, and Erika Leigh Stirton, who won five medals in Rhythmic Gymnastics in 1998 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Canada has hosted a total of four Commonwealth Games: Hamilton (1930), Vancouver (1954), Edmonton (1978) and Victoria (1994). Halifax, Nova Scotia, is in the running to host the 2014 Games.