Over the course of his long career as a water skier, Pierre Plouffe has amassed quite a collection of prestigious titles. Still going strong at 72 years old, he does it again with a Canadian record!
He doesn’t want to participate in competitions in the 70-years-plus category. Not that he refuses to grow old, but he’s in it for the competition. “In the Seniors category, 35 years and over, we can have more than 30 countries represented. On the other hand, in the 70 years and over, sometimes there are only three countries competing. So blah, that’s not very glorious.”
Pierre Plouffe has just celebrated his 72nd birthday. He loves home and Lake Tremblant, so calm when he arrives early in the morning “before everyone else” at the Nautical Center that bears his name. But the athlete can’t help but see beyond this body of water.
At the Eastern Canadian Water Ski Championships held in Ontario from July 23 to 25, Pierre Plouffe set a Canadian record (pending approval) in the combined (“my specialty,” he says) in the Male 8 category (over 65).
“I didn’t need to qualify to be able to participate in the Pan Am [Pan American Waterski Championship] which will take place in Mexico in October, because I’ve already won the Worlds in 2018 in Chile and the Pan Am the year after that’’ he said. ‘’It gives me the right to defend my title. But it was important to go to Ontario, to see what I can do in competition. ”
Pierre Plouffe never really retired. He did take a break or two, but the call of the water and the beach was always heard. “My doctor told me to find something to get me back in shape,” he says. ‘’At one point I decided to resume training for water skiing. By the way, it’s a lot easier to climb a flight of stairs at 178 pounds than at 235! ”
Way of life
For this repeat champion, training is a way of life. From March to May, he trains in Florida. Then he works on his physical form with the help of trainer Myrianne Côté. “Fitness is almost as important as the sport itself these days,” he says. Obviously, he stretches a lot. In the winter, he hurtles down the ski slopes of Mont Tremblant or those of Whistler in British Columbia. In summer, on the water of Lake Tremblant, Pierre Plouffe limits himself to three or four outings a day.
“The idea is to maintain your physical form to reach your peak for the competition itself. »- Pierre Plouffe, water skiing champion
Pierre Plouffe considers himself lucky. Between 2014 and 2016, he battled with cancer. Despite the chemotherapy and all the rest, he was able to keep his smile and fought to keep living this fulfilling life. And everything makes sense, he believes, when you take the time to enjoy the tranquility of a morning on the lake.
About Pierre Plouffe’s career
In the late 1960s, Pierre Plouffe was a member of the Canadian water ski team. In 1971, he won the World Cup in Tahiti, then the following year he finished 5th at the Olympic Games in Munich. Throughout his career, he has collected Canadian records and titles. Among these, the four World Championships in combined (2008, 2010, 2016 and 2018) that he won. The Fédération Québécoise de ski nautique inducted him into its Hall of Fame in 1994. He then entered the Panthéon des sports du Québec in 2000.