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INTERNATIONAL PARALYMPIC COMMITTEE
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Leinier Savon Pineda of Cuba celebrating after the Men's 200M T12 in Toronto at the 2015 Parapan American Games.

Leinier Savon Pineda

Athletics
2

The Cuban finished his first Paralympic Games in Rio as a two-time Paralympic champion after winning both the 100m and 200m T12 events.

The world started to take notice of the visually impaired sprinter after a superb display at both the Toronto 2015 Parapan Am Games and the 2015 World Championships in Doha, Qatar.

At the Parapan Am Games Savon clinched a sprint double, winning the 100m and 200m T12 well clear of his rivals in both events. He also won silver in the long jump T11/12 just 11 centimetres behind Lex Gillette, a multiple Paralympic silver medallist and the 2013 world champion.

Savon looked in magnificent form once again as he repeated his golden sprint double in Doha. He won the 100m (10.82), having set a new Championship record (10.77) in the heats, and was victorious in the 200m (22.14) with an Americas record.

At Rio 2016 he set a season’s best 10.89 in the 100m heats and won gold in the final with a time of 10.97. Over 200m he edged a thrilling final from South Africa’s Hilton Langenhovern with a time of 22.23.

Biography

Impairment information

Type of Impairment
Vision impairment
Origin of Impairment
Congenital
Classification
T12, F12

Further personal information

Occupation
Athlete
Languages
Spanish

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He took up the sport at age 16 in Guantanamo, Cuba.
Why this sport?
He was keen to try boxing like his cousins Felix and Erislandy Savon, but his mother did not want him to and encouraged him to choose athletics. "I like to feel the adrenaline and this sport helps me to do it."
Name of coach
Luis Bueno [national]

International debut

Year
2014
Competing for
Cuba
Location
Mexico

General interest

Hobbies
Listening to music. (paralympic.org, 26 Apr 2016)
Memorable sporting achievement
Winning gold at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. (juventudrebelde.cu, 03 Oct 2016)
Most influential person in career
His mother. (Athlete, 15 Jul 2017)
Hero / Idol
Cuban long jumper Ivan Pedroso, and Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt. (Athlete, 15 Jul 2017)
Injuries
In early 2016 he had an injury on the sole of his foot, caused by the spikes of his shoe. It took him two months to recover. (radiohc.cu, 15 Sep 2016; cubasi.cu, 27 Aug 2016)
Awards and honours
He was named the 2016 Athlete with an Impairment of the Year by the National Institute of Sports, Physical Education and Recreation [INDER] and the Circle of Sportswriters of the Union of Journalists of Cuba [UPEC]. (granma.cu, 14 Dec 2016)

He was named Paralympic Sportsman of the Year in 2015 by INDER. (jit.cu, 08 Dec 2015; granma.cu, 07 Dec 2015)
Famous relatives
He is related to Cuban boxers Felix Savon and Erislandy Savon. Felix won gold in the heavyweight category at the Olympic Games in 1992, 1996 and 2000, while Erislandy claimed gold in the heavyweight category at the 2017 World Championships in Hamburg, Germany, as well as the Pan American Games in 2015 and 2019. (SportsDeskOnline, 14 Oct 2019; cubasi.cu, 27 Aug 2016; granma.cu, 09 Oct 2015)
Impairment
While enlisting for compulsory military service in Cuba, doctors detected that he had a hereditary condition called retinoschisis that affects the retina in the eye. (cubasi.cu, 27 Aug 2016; jit.cu, 07 Aug 2015)

Results

Unit Date Rank
IPC Athletics 2015 World Championships (Doha, Qatar)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m T12 Heat 2 2015-10-22 1
Men's 100 m T12 Semifinal 2 2015-10-22 1
Men's 100 m T12 Final 1 2015-10-23 1
Men's Long Jump T12 Final 1 2015-10-24 8
Men's 200 m T12 Heat 2 2015-10-28 1
Men's 200 m T12 Final 1 2015-10-29 1
Men's 200 m T12 Semifinal 1 2015-10-29 1
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Long Jump T12 Final Round 2016-09-10 8
Men's 100 m T12 Heat 1 2016-09-14 1
Men's 100 m T12 Final Round 2016-09-15 1
Men's 200 m T12 Heat 1 2016-09-16 1
Men's 200 m T12 Final Round 2016-09-17 1
Men's 200 m T12 Heat 2 2016-09-17 1
World Para Athletics Championships London 2017 (London, Great Britain)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m T12 Heat 2 2017-07-14 1
Men's 100 m T12 Final 1 2017-07-15 1
Men's 100 m T12 Semifinal 1 2017-07-15 1
Men's 200 m T12 Heat 5 2017-07-19 9999