Canadian kayaker Adam van Koeverden, 34, says he’s “never prouder to be a Canadian” even though he didn’t manage to win a medal at Rio de Janeiro – his fourth and final Olympic games.

Here’s a look back at his achievements.


Just 22 years old, van Koeverden tells reporters in Athens that he expects to win.

He goes on to take gold in the 500-metre and bronze in the 1,000-metre.

Canada’s only double-medallist, he gets the honour of carrying the Maple Leaf at the closing ceremonies.


Van Koeverden is named flag-bearer at the Beijing games, where he’s expected to take two golds after winning five of six Wold Cup kayak events earlier that year.

He ends up with silver in the 500-metre and eighth in the 1,000-metre. Some suggest it was the flag-bearer “curse.”

"It's not a failure,” he said at the time. “You shoot for the stars, sometimes you only make it to the moon."

Later that year, Adam van Koeverden Street is unveiled in his hometown of Oakville, Ont.

Adam van Koeverden flag bearer in Beijing

van Koeverden carries the flag of Canada in Beijing, on Friday, Aug. 8, 2008. (AP Photo/Amy Sancetta)


Van Koeverden goes into the London games again expected to win at least one gold.

He wins silver in the 1,000-metre, and later blogs that he was “truly grateful” to get the opportunity to stand on .

“Our little squad did all right,” he wrote. “Overall I’d say that I’m really happy... and if that isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.”


Van Koeverden placed sixth in the 1,000-metre semi-finals Monday at his fourth Olympic games.

In the B-final, he manages a time so good that it would have snagged him a silver medal in the actual final.

He says he’s proud of his career and grateful for support.