24 Paralympic athletes will represent Belgium during the Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro (7-18th September). The Belgian Paralympic Committee (BPC) thinks the group, which assembled on the place de la Monnaie in Brussels on Saturday, could win 8 medals in Brazil.
Equestrian Michèle George (2 gold medals in London) is considered one of the ‘leaders’ of the group, along with sprinter Marieke Vervoort (1 gold and 1 silver), Peter Genyn, tennis player Joachim Gérard and Pieter Cilisen (1 bronze). 40 Belgian Paralympians took part in the London Games, and won 7 medals. “We want to do at least as well as we did 4 years ago. With four current world champions and three European champions from last year, this is not an unrealistic goal. The BPC is convinced Rio 2016 will be a success, as London was: for sports as well as socially”, says the President of the Committee, Anne d’Ieteren. “We have fewer athletes than London, because our rugby and goalball teams didn’t manage to qualify”, said boss Olek Kazimirowski. “We hope to make up for it with the number of medals, but places in the top 5 and finals are also important”.