One of the most traditional events in the annual circuit, the International Para Athletics Meeting of L’Hospitalet is back with near 100 athletes competing at the Sport Stadium of L’Hospitalet North, in the Barcelona Metropolitan Area, Spain on Saturday (10 April).
Five months after the last edition, the main objective of the athletes will be to prepare for the Tokyo Paralympic Games in August. Several participants have already secured their ticket to Japan but for many, L’Hospitalet will be one of the remaining chances to get the required standard for the biggest event on the planet.
The 16th edition of the meeting will feature once again the best of Spain. On the list are names such as Rio 2016 shot put F12 Paralympic champion Kim Lopez, Dubai 2019 World Championships medallist Meritxell Playa, and London 2017 Worlds medallists Sara Andres Barrio and Sara Martinez. Desiree Vila, Joan Munar, Jose Manuel Quintero, Adiaratou Iglesias and Xavi Porras are other Spain national team regulars competing this Saturday.
Among local athletes who compete for L’Hospitalet Athletics are Yassine Ouhdadi, silver medallist in the men’s 5000m T13 at the Dubai 2019 World Championships, alongside Mari Carmen Paredes (already qualified for Tokyo 2020), Iván Soriano, Paula Heras, Vicente Martínez and Laia Fabra.
Despite travel limitations and current restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, international athletes are also set to compete at L’Hospitalet 2021. Among them, Greece’s Loukas Protonotarios (100m and 400m), Anastasios Kourdis (long jump) and Stylianos Malakopoulos (400m), as well as the Colombians Omar Acosta and Anderson Naranjo (both in the 400m) and Italy’s Spain-based sprinter Davide Morana.
This year’s edition will count with the return of the public, in a 50 per cent capacity in accordance to the lifting of some restrictions made by health authorities.
The competition is set to be streamed live on World Para Athletics website and Facebook page, and on the L'Hospitalet YouTube channel.
For more information can be found on the L’Hospitalet official website (in Catalan, English and Spanish).