Decorated Canadian sprint canoeist Laurence Vincent-Lapointe retires

Decorated Canadian sprint canoeist Laurence Vincent-Lapointe retires

Decorated Canadian sprint caoneist Laurence Vincent-Lapointe is retiring months after earning a pair of medals in her Olympic debut.

The 29-year-old from Trois-Rivières, Que., announced her retirement Monday on her Instagram page, saying she had accomplished “everything I had wanted to do by going to the Olympic Games.”

Vincent-Lapointe won silver in the women’s C-1 200-metre race at the Tokyo Olympics last year, then teamed with Katie Vincent to claim bronze in the C-2 500.

Long a dominant force in sprint canoe — she racked up 11 world championship gold medals over her career — Vincent-Lapointe lobbied for women to be able to compete in her sport on the Olympic stage.

It finally happened in Tokyo, but controversy almost kept Vincent-Lapointe out of the Games after she had an “adverse analytical finding” in July 2019 during an out-of-competition drug test.

She was suspended and missed the 2019 world championship, but battled for reinstatement.

The International Canoe Federation cleared her to compete in January 2020, accepting that Vincent-Lapointe was the victim of third-party contamination of a banned substance.

“I’ve come to the realization that I’ve accomplished everything I wanted to do by going to the Olympic Games and finally seeing the women be allowed in the Games,” Vincent-Lapointe said. “I realize that I’ve done everything I wanted and this is where I want to finish.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 4, 2022.

The Canadian Press