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'The country will not soon forget...'

NEWS RELEASE OFFICE OF THE PRIME MINISTER OF CANADA ************************** Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement congratulating the Canadian Winter Olympic Team on their stellar performance at the 2014 Olympic Winter
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NEWS RELEASE

OFFICE OF THE
PRIME MINISTER
OF CANADA

**************************
Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement congratulating the Canadian Winter Olympic Team on their stellar performance at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia:

Our Winter Olympic team went to Sochi to proudly represent their country and perform to the best of their ability.

They certainly succeeded in spectacular fashion, earning 10 gold medals, 10 silver medals and five bronze medals.

The whole country watched breathlessly as they went faster, higher, stronger over ice and snow, often defying gravity and defining precision with true Canadian spirit and pride.

They provided us with terrific moments in sport that inspired fervent national pride and demonstrated again and again that Canadians can compete with the very best on the world stage and succeed brilliantly.

The country will not soon forget sisters Justine and Chloé Dufour-Lapointe standing on the podium together with gold and silver in the women’s freestyle skiing moguls’ competition, our women’s curling team going undefeated the entire Sochi Winter Games, Alex Bilodeau, Charles Hamelin, Kaillie Humphries and Heather Moyse repeating gold medal performances in their respective sports four years after their successes at the Vancouver 2010 Games, Canadian athletes earning medals in newly introduced winter Olympic sports like Dara Howell and Kim Lamarre in women’s skiing slopestyle, Jan Hudec’s bronze medal in alpine skiing men’s Super-G, Canada's first podium finish in men's Olympic alpine skiing in 20 years, and the ice poetry of silver medal skaters Patrick Chan, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir to name a few.

Of course, we will all remember the spectacular win by our Women’s Hockey Team coming back from a two goal deficit to win the gold medal.

The victory in men's hockey was also richly deserved.

These special moments and many others will no doubt inspire young people across the country to follow their sporting dreams.

In addition to the Team’s remarkable performance, our athletes also showed great sportsmanship and camaraderie, capturing the true spirit and meaning of the Games.

Who will forget Gilmore Junio stepping aside so that Denny Morrison could compete in men’s 1000m speed skating where he earned a silver medal, and the emotional honouring of the late Sarah Burke, a gifted athlete and trailblazer in freestyle skiing who championed the halfpipe being introduced as an Olympic sport this year in Sochi, Russia.

I would like to pay special tribute to the Olympic Team coaches and support staff as well as supportive family members who were all an essential part of this year’s success.

I would also like to thank the countless sports clubs, associations, teams and volunteers here at home who have created a network in Canada that yields so many world-class athletes.

Our Government will continue to support your important work.

Finally, I would also like to thank Russia, especially the people of Sochi, for hosting these Games.

I look forward to the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games, which will undoubtedly add to our impressive Sochi medal tally.

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