Road to London 2012!
Did you know– Bolivia’s swimmer Katherine Moreno came in 38th place in the women’s 100-meter backstroke at the Seoul 1988 the Olympic Games, between Angela Birch (Fiji) and Elsa Freire (Angola). However, Antonieta Arizaga is the most successful swimmer in Bolivian history. Why? At the 1977 Bolivarian Games, surprisingly, Miss Arizaga won the gold medal in the women’s 100m breaststroke. No other Bolivian swimmer -male or female– had ever won an international title in the history of Latin American sport. Unfortunately, she lost the chance to compete in the Olympic Swimming Tournament when the Bolivian government boycotted the Summer Olympics in the Soviet Union in 1980.
Did you know- Chile’s athlete Onésima Reyes was one of the world’s best basketball players in the early 1950s. Under her leadership, Chile finished second in the Women’s Basketball World Cup, behind America.
Did you know- By 1984, Costa Rica -once dubbed the “Switzerland of Latin America”– sent one sportswoman to the Summer Olympic Games in the American city of Los Angeles. Unfortunately, María del Milagro París, who was one of Latin America’s top swimmers, did not compete at the 1984 Summer Games. At the previous Olympics in the Soviet Union in 1980, she had been one of the eight finalists in the women’s 100m butterfly. At the FINA World Championships in the Colombian city of Cali in July 1975, she came in fifth place in the 100m butterfly, after Kornelia Ender and Rosemary Kother (both from East Germany) and Camille Wright and Jill Symons (both ).
Did you know- The United States hosted the Women’s Football World Cup in the late 1990s. The host nation’s team won the gold medal, followed by the People’s Republic of China (silver), and Brazil (bronze). On July 10, 1999, in the final, the States defeated China 5-4 (penalty kicks). At the previous World Cup in Sweden in 1995, the team of America came in third place. By 1996, they, the local squad, won the gold medal in the Women’s Olympic Games Soccer Tournament, followed by the People’s Republic of China (silver), Norway (bronze), Brazil, Germany, Sweden, Japan, and Denmark, in that order. The Olympic winners were Tiffeny Milbrett, Tisha Venturini, Joy Fawcett, Kristine Lilly, Carin Gabarra, Julie Foudy, Michelle Akers, Mia Hamm, Shannon MacMillan, Staci Wilson, Brandi Chastain, Tiffany Roberts, Carla Overbeck, Cindy Parlow, Mary Harvey, Briana Scurry.
Did you know- In August 1973, Chile sent two sportswomen – Erika Medina Sutherland and Hilda Raquel Ortiz– to the People’s Republic of China, home to the African-Asian Tournament.
Alejandro Guevara Onofre: Freelance writer. Alejandro is author of a host of articles/essays about over 220 countries and dependencies (and American States as well), from ecology, history, tourism and national heroes to Olympic sports, foreign relations, and wildlife. In addition, he has published some books on women’s rights, among them “History of the Women in America” and “Famous Americans.”