What a giant clash it was again between Kayla Harrison and Mayra Aguiar. At the Pan American Games in Toronto, the foreseen final indeed occurred and the conclusion is that Kayla Harrison is further in her development then Mayra Aguiar. Both women medalled at the Olympic Games, Harrison as Olympic Champion, Aguiar with bronze, but at the 2014 World Championships it was Aguiar to take the world title for the first time in her career with Harrison who captured the bronze.
In Toronto the world’s number one Kayla Harrison from the United States claimed the gold, not a huge surprise but an interesting milestone towards the World Championships in Astana in August.
Yalennis Castillo (CUB) and Catherine Roberge took the bronze medal in this class U78kg.
Brazil did win two gold medals though, in the men’s divisions. 32-Year old Luciano Correa defeated Marc Deschenes by penalties in the final U100kg. The 2007 World Champion can still do it, although this Pan American level is completely different from world level where mainly European athletes dominate the world ranking, not even Kyle Reyes from Canada competed, who’s a more competitive athlete. Still Correa defeated all three opponents and took the gold. Deschenes captured Canada’s fifth silver medal this edition of the Panam Games by defeating Cuba’s hope Jose Armenteros in the final. Correa prolonged his title of 2011 and took his third PanAm Games medal.
In the heavyweight category David Moura of Brazil won gold. Moura finished fifth at the World Championships last year in Chelyabinsk and won the PanAm Championships in April. In Toronto he beat Freddy Figueroa of Ecuador. Ecuador has an amazing Pan American Games with two gold and silver and is the surprise nation of this event.
Not a surprise was the victory of World and Olympic Champion Idalys Ortiz of Cuba in the women’s heavyweight category. In the final she beat 33-year old Vanessa Zambotti (MEX), also an expected finalist. Ortiz defeated Nina Cutro Kelly (30) of the USA. Zambotti defeated Maria Suelen Altheman in the semi final. In the field also good old Kenia Rodriguez Ocana, a veteran of 42 years who won Panam Games medals in 1991 and 1995 for Cuba, but now competes for Honduras.
With these last medals Brazil won the medal table by 5 gold medals followed by Cuba with 3 titles and the United States with Malloy, Stevens and Harrison capturing gold. Ecuador took a great number of 2 gold medals and Canada disappoints a little bit with one gold, but five silver medals.