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Burnett takes experience at Pan Am Games in stride




Jason Burnett of Nobleton soared to a fourth-place finish in men's individual trampoline at the Pan Am Games last week.

Photo provided by Canadian Olympic Committee.

By Jake Courtepatte

There's no rest for the wicked in the world of amateur athletics.

Just one week after finishing one spot shy of the podium in individual trampoline at the 2015 Pan Am Games in Toronto, Jason Burnett of Nobleton was back in the air in Calgary this weekend, competing at the Canadian Games.

There he earned a second-place finish behind only an opponent from Great Britain, and actually ahead of fellow Canadian Keegan Soehn, who earned the gold for Canada at Pan Am.

Such is the life of an amateur athlete.

“You have to pick yourself up and move on,” said Burnett. “There's always a competition to prepare for, or train for, so you have to look forward to that.”

With Canadian athletes crowding the Pan Am trampoline podiums, including fellow King resident Rosie MacLennan earning gold in the women's individual event, Burnett was hopeful to reach the podium in his third Pan-Am Games – he earned the gold medal in 2007 in Rio.

The 28-year-old finished just 0.1 points shy of the bronze medal last Sunday, after a less-than-favourable qualification performance the day before.

“I'm not really a stranger to international competitions, so I just knew I didn't have it that day.”

He's also no stranger to the international podium. Burnett's 15-year career has had more than a handful of top-three finishes, highlighted by a silver medal in individual trampoline at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.

He currently holds the record for the world's most difficult trampoline routine, with a degree of difficulty of 20.6. He also holds the world record of 18.8 for a routine performed in a competition.

What he takes away from these Games, however, is the hope that he and his team were able to inspire the younger generation to try the sport of trampoline in his home of Toronto.

“Competing on a stage this big in front of a home crowd … it's not something I've ever been able to do before, and neither have my teammates. The home crowd was something that really motivates you, and I hope we were able to motivate some of them to take a look into the sport.”

With Toronto only a short drive from Burnett's home town of Nobleton, he had quite the supporting cast in the crowd at the Toronto Coliseum, many waving red-and-white letters that when held together read “Go Jason Go!”

“I was so happy to have my family and friends come out and support me. My Pan Am Games competition didn't go exactly as I had hoped, but I'm still thrilled to be healthy and happy to represent Canada.”

 

 

Excerpt: There’s no rest for the wicked in the world of amateur athletics. Just one week after finishing one spot shy of the podium in individual trampoline at the 2015 Pan Am Games in Toronto, Jason Burnett of Nobleton was back in the air in Calgary this weekend, competing at the Canadian Games. There he earned a second-place finish behind only an opponent from Great Britain, and actually ahead of fellow Canadian Keegan Soehn, who earned the gold for Canada at Pan Am. Such is the life of an amateur athlete. “You have to pick yourself up and move on,” said Burnett. “There’s always a competition to prepare for, or train for, so you have to look forward to that.”


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