Puerto Rican Paralympic judo player Luis Gabdel Perez has traveled to Azerbaijan, where he will compete one of two important competitions to ensure his qualification for the Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
Perez, who has been blind since birth, will compete next Tuesday in the Baku Grand Prix in the 66-kilogram category. While he will fight on June 19 at the Warwick Grand Prix in Great Britain.
“These are the last two events to score in the Tokyo Paralympic world rankings. I’m technically ranked. Now I’m in the ranking. But I have to do two good competitions to finish qualifying because I have the Portuguese (Miguel Vieira) behind me. But here we are. I’m going now (to).” Azerbaijan and England) to finish my qualification to Tokyo in prosperity. That’s what it takes, “said the cheerful athlete speaker.
The Puerto Rican Paralympic delegation flag holder in the 2016 Rio edition is ranked 20th in the International Federation of Blind Sports (IBSA, for its English acronym). Perez has 163 points, while his closest rival, Portuguese Miguel Vieira, is 21 points with 156 points.
The IBSA’s top 20 rankings qualify directly to Tokyo.
Perez, 34, traveled on Wednesday with his coach, former judo player Jadeel Miranda.
“We will be in Azerbaijan until the 27th, on that day we will go to Germany, where we will have a three-week training camp in Stuttgart. So, on June 14 we will leave for England, where we will compete on the nineteenth day and the next day we return to Puerto Rico,” Perez said. .
The Tokyo Paralympics are held from August 24 to September 5, two weeks after the Olympics.
Perez won a silver at the 2019 Para Pan American Games and a gold medal at the Para Pan American Judo 2018 in Canada; his goal in his second Olympiad, in Tokyo, would be to improve seventh place in Brazil.
Six other Puerto Rican Paralympic athletes are seeking to close their classification, according to the president of the Puerto Rico Paralympic Committee, German Perez. This is for athletics and swimming.