Meet Annick D’Auteuil – the NRC’s sports aerodynamics expert

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My name is Annick D'Auteuil. I'm 38 years old and I was born in a very small town called Trois-Pistoles. I remember watching the Olympics on TV. It was inspiring because you could see all those athletes. They are at the maximum performance of their sport. I was always interested by science, I was asking too many questions. So when I started my Ph.D. in 2006 I was very curious to see... ...will all my educational background in science be able to help the athletes?

So I proposed something to the speed skating team saying I believe that we can do something to help you. We were able to select proper fabric for different locations on the body and at the end, provide the best suit possible for the Canadian Olympic speed skaters for the long track for the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver. And in parallel with my Ph.D. work, that I was able to do here at the National Research Council of Canada... we have done multiple tests for more than 15 different sports all the sports where the speed is important.

Working with athletes in the tunnel was just fantastic. It's all positive energy. They just like their sport for so many years. They are the best person to talk about their sport because they know all the details and a difference in one inch of a the position of the leg makes all the difference for them. They are at that level, they know everything about their sport.

When I was young and watching the Olympics on TV. it was fascinating for me to see all the athletes and now, I'm watching it again, the Olympics, but it's different. I see it completely differently because of my proximity with the athletes. They came in the wind tunnel, I've seen them, I helped them.

On screen: National Research Council Canada

On screen: Canada Wordmark

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