Canada has some of the world’s fastest runners and walkers, highest jumpers, strongest throwers and wheelchair racers. As they prepare for competition on the world’s biggest stages, Athletics Canada is launching a new cutting edge brand identity for everyone to rally behind.
“Athletics Canada represents athletes from a lot of different disciplines, so we needed to create an identity that represents everyone and unifies them into one powerful team. From high school athletes to national team members, this brand represents all of us,” said Athletics Canada’s Chief Executive Officer David Bedford. “We are thrilled with the work done by One Twenty Three West, pulling inspiration from our sport, our country and our bright future.”
When it came time to design the brand that would represent the diverse disciplines of athletics in Canada – track and field, para athletics, road running, race walking, cross country, mountain, ultra and trail – Athletics Canada worked with one of our most invested stakeholder groups: the athletes themselves. Athlete input was sourced from the very start; athletes were engaged in the review of potential designs and provided feedback throughout the process. The video to accompany the brand launch was narrated in English and French by Olympian 400-metre runner Micha Powell. A soon-to-be-released Public Service Announcement features sprinter Andre De Grasse, pole vaulter Alysha Newman and wheelchair racer Trystan Smyth showcasing the sport’s mind-blowing excellence. Athletics Canada is also putting its athletes front and centre when it launches the new athletics.ca later this spring.
“A lot of athletes are hungry and eager to compete after having our seasons cut short in 2020,” said World Championships, Commonwealth and Olympic medallist Aaron Brown. “This new Athletics Canada rebrand reflects that, letting the world know that the team is ready to come out of the gate with fire and pride when representing the Maple Leaf.”
“I love the look of the new Athletics Canada branding,” said 2016 Paralympian Marissa Papaconstantinou. “It’s edgy and sleek, which I think represents the sport of track and field. I also think it is a very unique representation of the Maple Leaf. I can’t wait to rep this new logo on the world stage!”
“I love the new logo! I think it looks sharp and I really love the meaning and thought that went behind it,” said three-time Pan American Games medallist and 2016 Olympian Sage Watson. “It’s important that we represent all disciplines and all levels of athletes, and I feel like this logo does that exactly.”
Athletics Canada’s distinctive new logo fuses together a modern design, Canadian colours and visuals from the world of athletics to create a new look for a team poised to do big things this summer at the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, and for years to come.
The Maple Leaf: First and foremost, Athletics Canada represents Canadian athletes and fans. The logo uses shapes inspired by the Maple Leaf, with the negative space in the middle of the symbol forming the top of a Maple Leaf.
The Track: Lanes from the track are represented in the shapes that form the symbol, while the angle suggests the movement and speed our sport is known for.
The Podium: The tiered shapes that make up the logo depict every athlete’s goal: the podium.
The Torch: A symbol of the pursuit of perfection, enlightenment, passion and hope, the logo is reminiscent of the glowing flames of a torch.
A for Athletics: Coming to a point at the top of the logo, the symbol with the logo reflects the shape of the letter ‘A’.
“We have absolutely loved working with everyone at Athletics Canada,” said Scot Keith, Founder and CEO/President of One Twenty Three West, the idea and design firm that created the brand identity with Athletics Canada. “Some of Canada’s very best athletes took the time to meet with us to help us in the strategic planning stage. The athletes and the team at Athletics Canada were fantastic partners in the collaboration of this new bold and modern brand identity. We can’t wait to see the new brand and look on our remarkable athletes as they compete with pride for our country.”
Wear the new look
The new brand identity is rolling out now, having been applied across Athletics Canada’s social media channels, including a new front page for athletics.ca.
You can wear Athletics Canada’s new logo today, with newly branded apparel available at shop.athletics.ca.
About Athletics Canada
Athletics Canada is the national sport governing body for track and field, para athletics, cross-country running and road running. Its purpose is to support high performance athletics excellence at the world level, and to provide leadership in developmental athletics. Athletics Canada is a not for profit, charitable organization operating under a board of directors elected by provincial / territorial members.
About One Twenty Three West:
Named Canada’s Small Agency of the Year, One Twenty Three West is an independent idea and design collective based in Vancouver and Toronto. With an agency model of “low overhead, high talent,” the team includes 15 working CDs who share the creative director role equally, ensuring a diverse mix of perspectives, opinions and styles for every project.