Five top Americas lifters expected at Rio 2016

Getting into the world top three is not easy, but that is exactly what the best powerlifters from the region have done in 2016. 08 Jun 2016
A picture of a powerlifter on a bench celebrating

Amalia Perez of Mexico celebrates winning gold in the Women's 60kg Powerlifting at the London 2012 Paralympic Games

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Latin America’s first Paralympic Games get underway in Rio de Janeiro in just under three months’ time.

Rio 2016 offers athletes from the Americas the chance to shine, and powerlifters will be looking to get in on the action.

Here are five top ranked lifters from the region to watch at Riocentro - Pavillion 2 between 8-14 September.

Amalia Perez, Mexico, women’s up to 55kg

The superstar of Mexican Para sport holds the women’s up to 61kg world record and world title, but has competed in the lower weight category in 2016.

With a world-leading lift of 122kg from the World Cup in Malaysia in the up to 55kg, Perez will be hoping to win her third consecutive Paralympic title in Rio.

Perla Barcenas, Mexico, women’s up to 86kg

With two podium finishes from the Americas and Asian Open Championships in 2015, Barcenas has firmly stamped her name on the minds of her competitors.

In 2016 the Mexican continued her good form. She lifted 125kg in Malaysia to take second place in the world rankings.

Janier Cantillo, Colombia, men’s up to 80kg

Just 2kg separates the best lifts of the year so far from Cantillo and Mexico’s Porfirio Francisco Arredondo Luna, meaning the battle for the best Americas lifters in this category will be fierce at Rio 2016.

Americas champion Cantillo is currently placed third in the world ahead of Arredondo Luna. An added incentive for the Colombian to find some extra power could be the potential to improve on his fourth place finish from the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

Jose de Jesus Castillo Castillo, Mexico, men’s up to 97kg

The former world record holder from the men’s up to 90kg has gone from strength to strength since competing in the up to 97kg.

Castillo Castillo built on a bronze medal from the 2014 World Championships, pushing a career best of 225kg on his way to gold at the Toronto 2015 Parapan American Games. He got close once again in 2016 when he lifted 222kg to take third place in the world rankings.

Juan Carlos Garrido, Chile, men’s up to 59kg

Sydney 2000 Paralympic champion Garrido has returned to some of his best form in recent years, taking gold at the Toronto 2015 Parapan American Games and silver at the Americas Open.

He also finished on the podium at two World Cups in 2016, including a win at the Rio 2016 Test Event. That lift of 186kg gave him the world No. 2.


Sport fans from around the world can now buy their Paralympic tickets for Rio 2016 from authorised ticket resellers (ATRs)

The IPC’s Global ATR is Jet Set Sports, and Rio 2016 tickets and packages can be purchased on the CoSport website.

Residents of Brazil can buy 2016 Paralympics tickets directly from the Rio 2016 website.