"I know I will achieve my goal. I am highly motivated, have not had any major injuries in my career, I am working very hard and have the help of my coach and my entire team.”
Mauricio Valencia was aiming high ahead of this season after winning his first Paralympic gold in 2016 and his maiden World Championships title in 2017. And the Colombian field athlete delivered by breaking the world record in the men’s javelin F34.
Valencia’s achievement comes in at No. 6 in the Americas Paralympic Committee’s Top 10 Moments of 2018.
In April, the 31-year-old competed at the National Para Athletics Competition in Santiago de Cali, Colombia, winning gold in both the men’s shot put and javelin F34 and breaking a world record of 38.23m in the latter along the way.
Valencia is next targeting success at the Lima 2019 Parapan American Games, where he will try to outdo his double silver medal-performance from Toronto 2015.
“Toronto 2015 was a very difficult competition and, despite being happy for adding two silvers to Colombia’s medal haul, I still believe I could do more,” he said.
He had taken one gold at Guadalajara 2011. “At Lima 2019, as at Guadalajara 2011, I know I will achieve my goal. I am highly motivated, have not had any major injuries in my career, I am working very hard and have the help of my coach and my entire team,” he said.
Valencia has become a national hero since winning one gold and one bronze at the Rio 2016 Paralympics, even having two stamps dedicated to him by the national postal service.
In 2017 he was named Para Athlete of the Year in Colombia.
The countdown of the APC’s Top 10 Moments continues until 31 December.