Roxana Gómez achieves lifetime best in 400 and gets ticket to Tokyo

Roxana Gómez achieves lifetime best in 400 and gets ticket to Tokyo
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17 April 2021
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Four-time world champion Roxana Gómez achieved on Friday the best record of her life and became the 43rd Cuban athlete to get her ticket to the Tokyo Olympic Games.

Born on January 7, 1999 in Cienfuegos (center-south of the island), the country's best exponent in the 400 meters turned the oval in 51.13 seconds, to improve by far the minimum mark required to be in Tokyo (51.35).

A student of professors Ricardo Molina and Juan Gualberto Valdés "Juanito", the U-20 Pan American champion in Trujillo-2017 had come close to the Olympic mark the previous week, when she ran 51.39 in the same stage in eastern Havana.

On a sunny morning, the also sixth place in the U-20 World Championship in Poland-2016, went out on Friday like a fireball in search of the Olympic mark, and clearly outpaced Lisneidy Veitía (52.46, SB) and Zurian Hechavarría (52.74).

"We are very happy with the results we are achieving in general and in Roxana's case she is improving by start. Today she was able to go under 51 seconds, but she lacked strength in the last 20 meters," her trainer Ricardo Molina told Radio Havana Cuba.  He added that next weekend they will carry out the last control ahead of the World Relay Championship, scheduled for May 1st and 2nd in Chorzów (Poland).

Cuba will register Roxana, Veitía, Zurian, and the ochocentistas Rose Mary Almanza and Sahily Diago, who train in Guatemala under the tutelage of Professor Francisco Ayala.

With Roxana's qualification, Cuba now has 43 athletes with tickets to Tokyo, 15 of them in athletics.

Also on Friday, the men's sprint team competed, and the Pan American U-20 champion Reynier Mena dominated the 200 m in 20.83 sec, ahead of Jenns Fernandez (22.01).

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