MANILA, June 2 — Philippine Sports Association for Differently Abled (PHILSPADA) athletes seized seven medals during Thursday’s Handisport Paris Open, the newest addition to World Para Athletics Grand Prix.
Marites Burce, a wheel-chair bound athlete, bagged the gold medal in the women’s discus throw F54 classification. She also took the bronze in the javelin throw.
The Philippines also won two silvers, coming from Andy Avellana in the men’s high jump (F42) and Joel Balatucan in the men’s javelin throw (55/56).
Balatucan also contributed to the country’s medals haul when he finished third in the discus throw (54/55).
The other bronze medalists were visually-impaired Evaristo Carbonel (F11 discus throw) and Jerrold Mangliwan (T52, 200 meters).
More than 400 athletes from 10 countries participated in the tournament held at the historic Stade Charléty stadium in the French capital.
Organized by the Fédération Française Handisport (FFH), the Paris Open is one of nine qualifying tournaments for the Para Athletics World Championships, to be held on July 14-23 in London, Great Britain.
The other qualifying tournaments are the 9th FAZAA World Para Athletics Grand Prix in Dubai, UAE (March 20-23); Tunis International Meeting in Tunisia (April 13-15); 2017 Caixa Loterias Athletics Open Championshipin Sao Paolo, Brazil (April 21-23); Italian Open Championships in Rieti, Italy (May 5-7); 2017 Desert Challenge Games in Tempe, Arizona (May 12-13); 5th China Open Athletics Championships in Beijing (May 13-15); Switzerland ParAthletics in Nottwil (June 2-5); and Berlin Open Grand Prix in Germany (June 17-18).
A total of 1,300 athletes are competing in the 2017 World Para Athletics Championships, which features 213 events and will be held at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, the venue of the 2012 London Paralympic Games. (Jean T. Malanum/PNA)