Mexico City, June 1 (IANS) Mountain biker Daniela Campuzano will carry the Mexican flag at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games, head of the delegation Mario Garcia has announced.
At a press conference, Garcia on Tuesday said it had been “difficult” to select the flagbearing athlete for the Games’ inaugural ceremony on August 5, reports Efe.
Although not an Olympic champion, Campuzano fulfilled the requirements to be nominated and wind up among the top eight candidates for the honour, although several athletes with better careers so far were passed over, since being at the opening ceremony could affect their training.
“I’m very happy, it’s incredible news. I feel great admiration for my fellow athletes and representing them will be a real motivation,” said Campuzano in a video filmed in the Czech Republic, where she is training.
Campuzano, 29, began mountain biking in 1998 and during the current Olympic cycle she has been one of the best in her sport in Latin America.
In 2013, she came in first in cross-country at the Pan-American Championship in Puebla, Mexico, and the next year she won at the Central American and Caribbean Games in Veracruz and at the Pan-American Games in Barbacena, Brazil, and ended up in 14th place in the World Championship in Norway.
Last year, she was a gold medallist in the Lippi Cannondale Cup in Santiago, Chile, at the MTB International in Araxa, Brazil, and at the San Andres Marathon in Puebla.
This year, Campuzano won at the Pan-American Games in Catamarca, Argentina, and came in second at the International Mountain Biking Cup in Araxa, Brazil.