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  • Submitted by: Juana
  • 09 / 16 / 2016

Without any pressure and without "intending", Cuban Omara Durand won her qualifying heat of the women´s 400 meters-T12 event with world record of 50.90 seconds as preamble of should be her third gold medal in these 15th Paralympic Games.
Thus, she reached her second and sixth world and Paralympic record, respectively, at Joao Havelange Olympic Stadium, well ahead of Azeri Elena Chebanu (56.53) and Venezuelan Greilyz Villarroel (59.71).
Next Saturday she will be in the final against Ukrainian Oksana Boturchuk, winner of the third heat with time of 54.47, Mozambican Edmilsa Governo (54.94) and Spanish Melani Berges (57.52), winner of the first heat.
At the World Championship in Doha, Qatar, last October, the Cuban runner set a world record of 53.05 seconds and the record achieved yesterday also became a Paralympic one when lowering that of French Assia El Hannouni, dating back from Athens 2004.
Durand, known in Rio as record girl, will try to overcome her performance in London 2012, where she competed in the 100 and 400m events, at just 20, and if winning one more title she would equal the also Cuban Yunidis Castillo, five-time Paralympic champion.
Cuba was also represented yesterday through swimmer Juan Castillo, who qualified to the final in the men´s 100m butterfly-S9, in the second race of the day at the Olympic Park Aquatic Stadium.
Castillo finished third in his heat with time of 1: 02.04 minutes, record for the Americas, behind world record holder Italian Federico Morlacchi (1: 01.57) and Croatian Kristijan Vincetic (1: 01.92).

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