Published on July 30th, 2014 | by John Lyons0
Athletes bid for Iberoamericano glory
Chile’s team of 16 are determined to be in the medal shake-up in the prestigious Iberoamericano in Brazil this weekend.
The competition is sure to be tough as 29 countries are set to take part in Sao Paulo, but Chile have high hopes.
Among the medal prospects are decathlete Gonzalo Barroilhet, discus thrower Karen Gallardo and shot putter Natalia Duco.
Barroilhet won silver in the South American Games in Santiago in March and is eager to take on another major challenge.
He said: “I always aspire to be on the podium. I don’t know who I’ll be up against, but I don’t give that much relevance. I want to focus on my performance and give everything I’ve got.
“I’m fairly confident after three months of working hard to prepare for this championship.”
Gallardo memorably won gold at the Estadio Nacional in the South American Games and would love a repeat performance, if not more.
She said: “I want to be in the medals and, I hope, achieve my best mark. To beat the national record, 60.48m, is what I want most.”
Duco has already won one gold and two silvers in the Iberoamericano and will be a strong candidate to top the podium.
Over the years, Chile have won 72 medals – 19 golds, 25 silvers and 28 bronzes – in the Iberoamericano.
The full 16-strong team is: Natalia Duco (shot put), Karen Gallardo (discus), Odette Palma (hammer), Fernanda Mackenna (400m), Carolina Castillo (heptathlon), Max Alonso (discus); Roberto Sáez (hammer), Daniel Zupeuc (pole vault); Tomás Squella (800m), Iván López (1,500m), Carlos Díaz (1,500m), Mauricio Valdivia (3,000m), Víctor Aravena (5,000m), Gonzalo Barroilhet (decathlon), Matías Dallaserra (decathlon), Yerko Araya (walk).