Hosts Switzerland finally won gold on the last day of competition (6 August) at the Nottwil 2017 World Para Athletics Junior Championships, with Licia Mussinelli emerging triumphant in the women´s 1,500m T51-T54 youth race (U18) with 329 points.
She finished ahead of USA´s world junior champion Hannah Dederick (315), who was the favourite on paper. Dederick´s compatriot Elizabeth Floch (246) came in third.
Dederick (890 points) had a chance to celebrate as she took her fourth gold in the 100m, followed by Argentina´s Lucia Montenegro (766) and Floch (624).
Parapan American champion Eliezer Buenaventura (958) also delivered a standout performance as he claimed the men´s javelin F42-F47 junior title (U20). India´s Rinku Rinku (945) and Iran´s Mohammad Fathiganji (875) completed the podium.
“I came to win this gold medal, but I knew it was going to be a tough competition so I did not actually expect it,” said Buenaventura. “I started throwing badly, the rain did not help. But I cooled down and in my last throw I managed to win.
“Now I am looking forward to defending my Parapan American title at Lima 2019, and reaching the podium at the 2019 World Championships and the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.”
Buenaventura, who finished sixth in the men´s javelin F46 at Rio 2016, benefited from the "Road to Rio" programme organised by the Agitos Foundation (the development arm of the International Paralympic Committee), in the lead up to Latin America’s first Paralympic Games.
South Africa´s Ntando Mahlangu performed a clean sweep in Nottwil, winning all four of his events. On Sunday, the 15 year old took gold in the long jump F42-F47 youth title (U18) with 809 points, ahead of Brazil´s three-time Youth Parapans champion Thomaz Ruan de Moraes (547) and Germany´s Jonas Dominik Winkeler (290).
Mahlangu had previously won the men´s 100m (setting a world record of 12.01 in the T42 class), 200m and 400m T42-T47 youth titles (U18).
In the men´s 800m T35-T38 Youth (U18), Canada´s Zachary Gingras (916) claimed top honours, while New Zealand´s Guy Harrison (748) and Germany´s Felix Maximiliano Kruesemann (735) completed the top three.
Ecuador´s London 2017 silver medallist Damian Carcelen secured his second gold at Nottwil, this time in the men´s 400m T20 junior race (U20) with a time of 49.46. His compatriot Anderson Colorado Mina (49.89) finished second and France´s Charles-Antoine Koakou (50.10) third.
There was also a Germany one-two in the women´s long jump F35-F38 youth event (U18), with Annegret Schneider (718 points) taking the first spot ahead of Leonie Duering (482). Australia´s Kailyn Joseph (410) collected bronze.
Full results can be found on the Nottwil 2017 World Para Athletics Junior Championships website.