Paralympic bocce is practiced by people with a severe degree of physical impairment, whether caused by cerebral palsy or spinal cord injury. Until the Paralympic Games in Tokyo (Japan), athletes were divided only by seasons, according to the dimensions of disability. That is, men and women competed together. From now on, for the Paris (France) Games there is a gender separation.
A change that Paralympic medalist Macel Santos, who has cerebral palsy, believes would be beneficial for Brazil. According to him, before, there were only seven disputed medals (four per capita). Now, there are more possibilities for both men and women to search for a spot on the platform.
At the Tokyo Games, individual medals went to men only, in the four bocce classes. Two of them, two silver, came to Brazil, and one with Maciel himself, who was the 2012 London (UK) champion. Prior to the gender split, the country had one woman in the top ten in some categories. Now the age of five.
At the Copa America, which was held in December, in São Paulo, under this new system, the Brazilian national team was on the podium ten times in individual events: five times in the men’s and five times in the women’s. A sign that Brazil can be strong in this year’s World Championships, which will be held in Rio de Janeiro, between December 3-14. Maciel is looking forward to this and has invited fans to the Olympic Park to support the country’s athletes.
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