Canada’s paraplegic athletes had a lot to be proud of Sunday evening at the Parapan Am Games closing ceremony in Guadalajara, Mexico. The Canadian team placed fifth overall following closely behind Brazil, Mexico, the United States and Argentina.
The Parapan Am and Pan Am Games are held every four years in the year before the Summer Olympics between athletes across the Americas.
The Canadian Parapan Am team won 13 gold medals, 22 silver and 28 bronze, excelling in cycling, archery, swimming, boccia and table tennis. This year’s performance outshined Canada’s seventh place finish in the Beijing Parapan Am games in 2008.
The Canadian athletes who stood out throughout the games were cyclists Myriam Adam, Robbi Weldon and Daniel Chalifour, swimmers Kirstie Kasko and Adam Rahier, boccia players Paul Gauthier and Adam Dukovich and table tennis player Ian Kent.
Cyclists Robbi Weldon and Lyne Bessette were Canada’s flag bearers for Sunday’s closing ceremonies. The pair won gold in all four races for tandem cycling with Bessette acting as pilot for Weldon who has a visual impairment.
The Canadian Parapan Am team followed in the footsteps of the Canadian Pan Am team as they also placed fifth following the United States, Cuba, Brazil and Mexico. The Pan Am team won 119 medals–30 gold medals, 40 silver and 49 bronze.
Toronto will host the 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games.