Omara Durand: focused on another golden season
By: Alejandro Martínez Martínez
After several seasons marked with world titles and records, limits seem nonexistent for the Cuban paralympic athlete Omara Durand, formerly in the T13 category and now in the T12 (severely visually impaired).
Nothing has interfered with her aspirations or the smiling sprinter’s incredible physical condition - neither her condition (congenital cataract) nor a happy absence dedicated to her baby daughter. She is born to fly over any athletic stage.
Speaking to Cubaplus, Durand expressed her satisfaction with her achievements, especially in 2016, when she put her stamp on several world records and won three gold medals in as many events (100, 200 and 400 meters) at the Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
The Caribbean runner, 25 years of age, established universal dimensions in the hectometre (11.40 seconds) and a return to the oval (51.77), in addition to a paralympic achievement in the 200 (23.05), which brought her, among other results, the prestigious recognition of Juan Antonio Samaranch.
These new records were achieved in the T12 category, hand in hand with her guide Yuniol Kindelán. Durand has worked with Kindelán since before the Parapan American Games especially in achieving the exact pace, given that he cannot exceed it or finish ahead during the race, she pointed out.
With this, the native of the eastern province of Santiago de Cuba obtained five gold medals at Olympic events, in addition to two titles won in the T13 class at the London-2012 games.
For the present season, Durand confirmed she is immersed in preparations to take part in the IPC’s (International Paralympic Committee) World Para Athletics Competition to be held in July in the British capital, which strives to have the best sport conditions in order to continue with the excellent results at this level.
Asked if she had plans to beat world records at this coming competition, she humbly replied ,”Records are not planned, nor predicted - when the time is right they happen; we will see when we are there [in London]”, she said.
The Caribbean runner holds five gold medals from previous IPC competitions, having won two in the T13 category at the Christchurch games in New Zealand in 2011 and three at the 2015 games in Doha, Qatar, in the T12 category accompanied by Kindelán. For her achievements at the latter event, the Cuban athlete received the Laureus World Sports Awards, known as the Sports Oscar, for which she has been nominated again this year for her performance in Rio de Janiero.