Taylor Ruck

Taylor Madison Ruck (born May 28, 2000) is a Canadian competitive swimmer. She won two Olympic bronze medals as part of Canada's women's 4×100 metre and 4×200 metre freestyle relay teams at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. Ruck won eight medals at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia. Her eight medal performance of one gold, five silver, and two bronze tied her with three other athletes for the most all-time at a single Commonwealth Games, as well as making her the most decorated Canadian female athlete ever at a single Commonwealth Games.[9] Ruck is the all-time leading medallist at the FINA World Junior Swimming Championships having won nine gold, two silver, and two bronze over the course of the 2015 World Junior Swimming Championships and 2017 junior championships.

Taylor Ruck
Personal information
Full nameTaylor Madison Ruck[1]
National team Canada
Born (2000-05-28) May 28, 2000[2][3]
Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada[4][5][6]
Height183 cm (6 ft 0 in)[1][7]
Weight60 kg (132 lb)
StrokesFreestyle, Backstroke
ClubHigh Performance Center Ontario, Scottsdale Aquatic Club[8]
College teamStanford University
CoachBen Titley, Kevin Zacher[8]


Ruck won the gold medal in the 100 meter freestyle at the 2015 FINA World Junior Swimming Championships in Singapore, breaking the Championships record in both the heats and the final.[10] She also won the 200 meter freestyle, again in a championship record.[11] She would add a bronze medal in the 200 backstroke, as well as three relay a medals a gold in the mixed 4×100 m free, silver in the 4×200 m free, and a bronze in the women's 4×100 m freestyle event.

2016 Summer Olympics

Ruck was suffering from bronchitis during the trials for Canada's Olympic team and did not initially qualify, but officials took her illness into account and named her to the team for the 2016 Summer Olympics.[12][13]

There, as a sixteen year old Olympian, she swam the last leg in the heats and the second last leg of the finals in the women's 4×100 m relay final for Canada. Ruck competed with Penny Oleksiak, Chantal van Landeghem, Sandrine Mainville, and Michelle Williams and swam to a bronze medal, behind Australia and the United States. After the win Ruck said of "I’m definitely not one to cry easily but I was about to...I feel 110 per cent Canadian now!"[14] The medal was the first Canadian women's freestyle relay medal at the Olympics in 40 years.[14] She became the first athlete born in the 2000s to win an Olympic medal along with fellow Canadian swimmer and relay partner Penny Oleksiak.[15]

Ruck then won her second bronze medal as a part of the 4×200 metres freestyle relay team. She swam in second spot in the heats alongside Katerine Savard, Emily Overholt and Kennedy Goss, and second again in the final event, with Brittany MacLean and Oleksiak replacing Overholt and Goss. She last competed in the 4×100 metres medley, swimming the anchor leg in the trials before being replaced for the finals, where the Canadian team placed fifth.[13]

To end the 2016 season, Ruck and her teammates won a gold medal in the FINA short-course world swimming championships 4 × 200 m freestyle relay. Ruck, swimming the second leg, posted the fastest split time of the final with a 1:51.69.[16] She also won a bronze medal in the individual 200 m freestyle. For the 2017 season, Ruck relocated back to Canada to train at the High Performance Centre – Ontario led by Ben Titley.[17] There she began training with teammates Oleksiak, Toro, Van Landegham, Rebecca Smith, Sandrine Mainville, Kayla Sanchez, and Richard Funk.[17]

2017 season

Following her Olympic success in 2016, Ruck swam in the Canadian trials to compete at the 2017 World Aquatics Championships. There she was unable to place higher than fourth in any of the events, meaning she failed to qualify for the Canadian team in any of the events and missed worlds.[18]

Ruck was part of the gold medal 4 × 200 m freestyle 2017 World Junior Swimming Championships team in Indianapolis. In the process the team broke the junior world record and championship record.[19] Ruck would add gold medals and world junior records in both the 4×100 m relay and the 4×100 m medley. She set the world junior record in the girl's 100 m backstroke semis, but would lose the record and the gold medal to Regan Smith while winning the silver medal in the event. While swimming in the 200 m freestyle event, she lowered the championship record twice when she set a 1:57.08.[20] Ruck also set a 100 m championship record while leading off the 4×100 m relay when she swam to a 53.63.[20]

2018 season

Ruck competed as part of Canada's 2018 Commonwealth Games team in her buildup to the 2020 Summer Olympics.[21][22] The first day of competition in the Gold Coast was in fact a golden one when Ruck out-swam Ariarne Titmus and Emma McKeon to win the 200m freestyle in a Commonwealth Games record 1:54.81.[23] The time was also a Canadian record. Later that night she added to her total with a silver in the 4×100 m freestyle relay together with Penny Oleksiak, Kayla Sanchez, and Alexia Zevnik. The next day Ruck kept amassing medals, winning three more Saturday evening. She started the night tying for silver in the 50 m freestyle event medaling with the Campbell sisters. Next Ruck won a bronze in the 100 m backstroke behind winner, teammate, and world record holder Kylie Masse. She would cap the night with a silver in the 4×200 m freestyle relay.[24]

She continued her winning ways, winning a silver behind Masse in the 200 m backstroke, but finishing ahead of Emily Seebohm,[25] and a bronze medal in the 100 m backstroke. On the final day of competition, Ruck tied the Commonwealth Games record for total medals at a single games with eight, when she anchored the 4×100 m medley relay team to a silver medal. Her eight medals tied Canadian Ralph Hutton, and Australians Susie O'Neill and Emily Seebohm; it also made her the most decorated Canadian female athlete ever at a single Commonwealth Games.[9] After her gold, five silvers, and two bronze medal performance at the games Ruck said that "I'm just so honoured to be able to win that many medals. This meet has been so much fun, and I'm so glad to finish it with these girls by my side."[9]

Following the Commonwealth Games, Ruck carried her success that season into the 2018 Pan Pacific Swimming Championships in Tokyo. Ruck began the meet with a bronze medal in the women's 100 m freestyle, while adding bronzes in the 4×100 and 4×200 m freestyle relays. She then beat American star and fellow Stanford swimmer Katie Ledecky in the 200 m freestyle, leading from start to finish. CBC commentator Byron MacDonald said of Ruck's race and form that "anytime you beat the best female swimmer in the world… it's a huge step forward."[26] Ruck finished the competition in the 200 m backstroke where she out-touched Regan Smith at the wall for silver in the event. This gave her five medals, the most by any Canadian at a single Pan Pacific championships.[27] After a fantastic meet and a tremendous season put the world on notice, Ruck said of swimming in Tokyo, the site of the 2020 Olympics, that "this sets my expectations higher. I just love Japan and hopefully I'll be able to come back here in two years."[27]

Personal bests

Long course (50 m pool)

Event Time[28] Venue Date Notes
50 m freestyle 24.26 2018 Commonwealth Games, Gold Coast Aquatic Centre, Southport April 7, 2018 NR
100 m freestyle 52.72 2018 Pan Pacific Championships, Tastumi International Swimming Centre, Tokyo August 10, 2018
200 m freestyle 1:54.44 2018 Pan Pacific Championships, Tastumi International Swimming Centre, Tokyo August 9, 2018 NR, CR
50 m backstroke 28.99 2018 TYR Pro Swim Series, Austin January 13, 2018
100 m backstroke 58.55 2019 Canadian Swimming Trials, Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre, Toronto April 3, 2019
200 m backstroke 2:06.36 2018 TYR Pro Swim Series, Georgia Tech Aquatic Center, Atlanta March 2, 2018
200 m IM 2:11.16 2018 TYR Pro Swim Series, Georgia Tech Aquatic Center, Atlanta March 3, 2018
Legend: WRWorld record; AMAmericas record; CRCommonwealth record; NRCanadian record;
Records not set in finals: h – heat; sf – semifinal; r – relay 1st leg; rh – relay heat 1st leg; b – B final; – en route to final mark; tt – time trial

Short course (25 m pool)

Event Time[28] Venue Date Notes
50 m freestyle 24.08 2017 Lausanne Cup, Lausanne, Switzerland December 21, 2017
100 m freestyle 52.09 2017 Lausanne Cup, Lausanne, Switzerland December 20, 2017
200 m freestyle 1:52.50 2016 World Championships, WFCU Centre, Windsor December 6, 2016 NR
400 m freestyle 4:06.69 2016 World Championships, WFCU Centre, Windsor December 9, 2016
100 m backstroke 56.99 2017 Lausanne Cup, Lausanne, Switzerland December 21, 2017
200 m backstroke 2:01.66 2017 Lausanne Cup, Lausanne, Switzerland December 20, 2017 NR

Personal life

Ruck's family moved to Scottsdale, Arizona, U.S., before she was one year old. She does not hold American citizenship and continues to spend time in Canada while visiting family in Kelowna, Winnipeg, and Vancouver.[4] She attended Chaparral High School in Scottsdale. She attends Stanford University, starting school there in the fall of 2018.


  1. "Taylor Madison Ruck". Rio 2016 Organization. Retrieved September 2, 2016.
  2. "Young local swim stars Ryan Hoffer, Taylor Ruck making big waves". azcentral.com The Arizona Republic. April 19, 2015. Retrieved August 27, 2015.
  3. "Women's 100m Freestyle Final Start List". Omega Timing. August 27, 2015. Retrieved August 27, 2015.
  4. "Taylor Ruck Will Swim At Canadian World Championship Trials In April". SwimSwam. January 26, 2015. Retrieved August 27, 2015.
  5. "Taylor Ruck, Canadian swimmer, wins 2 gold, bronze at FINA worlds". CBC Sports. August 27, 2015. Retrieved November 5, 2015.
  6. "Kelowna's Taylor Ruck wins gold at world junior swim championships". The Daily Courier. August 31, 2015. Retrieved November 5, 2015.
  7. "Taylor Ruck profile". Canadian Olympic Committee. Retrieved February 1, 2018.
  8. "Taylor Ruck Rushes Inside 54 In 100 Free Heats As One Of Swiftest 15s Ever". SwimVortex. August 26, 2015. Archived from the original on September 10, 2015. Retrieved August 27, 2015.
  9. "Canada's Taylor Ruck wins 8th medal to equal Commonwealth Games record". CBC Sports. April 10, 2018.
  10. "Taylor Ruck Wins 100m Freestyle In Championship Record Timing". SwimSwam. August 27, 2015. Retrieved August 27, 2015.
  11. "Taylor Ruck Tracks Down 200 Free Meet Record at 2015 FINA World Junior Championships". Swimming World Magazine. August 30, 2015. Retrieved November 5, 2015.
  12. "Olympic Team Nominated for Rio 2016". Swimming Canada. Swimming Canada. April 10, 2016. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
  13. "Taylor Ruck, 16, Playing A Huge Role in Team Canada's Olympic Ruckus". Swimming World. August 11, 2016. Retrieved August 28, 2016.
  14. Jonathon Gatehouse (August 6, 2016). "The Young and the Fast: Canada wins relay bronze in Rio". Maclean's.
  15. Sutherland, James (August 9, 2016). "Canadian Oleksiak, Ruck first ever Olympic medallists born in 2000s". Swimswam. Retrieved August 20, 2016.
  16. "Canada wins gold in freestyle relay". The Sports Network. December 10, 2016. Retrieved December 11, 2016.
  17. Kierra Smith (May 17, 2017). "Taylor Ruck Moving to Canada to Train with High Performance Centre". SwimSwam. Retrieved July 27, 2017.
  18. David Rieder (April 26, 2017). "Missing Worlds a Small Setback for Taylor Ruck". Swimming World.
  19. "Penny Oleksiak, Canada win relay gold at world junior swimming championships". Toronto Star. Toronto, Ontario, Canada. August 23, 2017. Retrieved August 23, 2017.
  20. "Canada's Taylor Ruck had eye on the 200 Free Prize". SwimSwam. August 29, 2017.
  21. "Swimming Canada Nominates 26 Athletes to Canada's 2018 Commonwealth Games Team". swimming.ca/. Swimming Canada. September 26, 2017. Retrieved September 27, 2017.
  22. "Oleksiak, Masse headline Canadian swim team for Commonwealth Games". cbc.ca/. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). September 26, 2017. Retrieved September 27, 2017.
  23. "Taylor Ruck sets record, wins Canada's first gold of Commonwealth Games". CBC Sports. April 5, 2018.
  24. Neil Davidson (April 7, 2018). "Teenage swimmer Taylor Ruck racking up medals in Commonwealth Games pool". Toronto Star.
  25. "Kylie Masse, Taylor Ruck headline huge day for Canada at Commonwealth Games". CBC Sports. April 8, 2018.
  26. "Canada's Taylor Ruck upsets American swim superstar Ledecky". CBC Sports. August 9, 2018. Retrieved April 8, 2019.
  27. "Taylor Ruck scores Canadian medal record with Pan Pacific silver". CBC Sports. August 12, 2018. Retrieved April 8, 2019.
  28. "Taylor Ruck profile". Swimming Canada. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
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