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Number of Colombian athletes to Beijing Olympics rises to 63

Updated:2008-05-20 From:Xinhuanet

BOGOTA, May 19 (Xinhua) -- The number of Colombian athletes to attend the Beijing Olympic Games rose to 63 as Geiner Alonso Mosquera Becerra, the 400 meter runner surpassed the minimum mark of 45.95 seconds required by the Athletics International Federation (45.95), local media said on Monday.

Mosquera gained the berth by reaching 45.89 seconds.

The Colombian, who lives in San Juan, where he also pursues his studies at the university,

Mosquera was only 5 centesimals away of beating the national mark for the distance that is in the hands of two runners: Wilson calizales (1990) and Wenceslao Ferrin (1994) .

The new classified for the Olimpic Games won a silver medal in the South American games celebrated in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in2006.

The athletics, sums 13 sportsmen to the national delegation that will be competing starting next August 8th in China.

Before Mosquera, the marchist James Rendon, had been the sportsmen to obtain a place in Beijing, after competing in the Track World Cup celebrated in Russia, in 20 kilometers with a timing of 1 hour 22 minutes and 34 seconds.

Colombia may attain more places for Beijing with the athletics team of 4X100, the wrestlers in the free modality, equestrians, tennis, and others.

For the time being the 63 representatives in Beijing 2008 will try to obtain honors in 14 sports disciplines like track and field, boxing, canoeing, cycling, equestrian, artistic gymnastics, judo, weightlifting, wrestling, swimming, taekwondo, table tennis and archery.

Colombia started participating in the Olympic Games in 1932, and has won since then 9 medals, including 1 gold one won by Maria Isabel Urrutia for weight lifting in Australia 2000.

The flag bearer will be the cyclist Maria Luisa Calle, who won bronze in the Olimpic Games in Athens 2004.

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