On June 6th and 7th, 2015, four Belizean paddlers Chris Guydis, Wilberto Daniels, Bayron Cruz and Amado Cruz - from the Belize Canoe Association competed in the Puerto Rico Olympic Cup hosted by the Puerto Rico Canoe/Kayak Association. The event incorporates Kayak Sprint Races of distances of 200M, 500M, and 1000M in K1, K2 and K4 Categories.
This year was the first year Belize participated in the event along with Guatemala, Guadeloupe and Puerto Rico. While the team Belize struggled to master the art of the kayaks, after only 2 days of practice, all four men raced and even though they did not medal in the K1 or K2 events, they managed to place 2nd in the K4 1000 m and 3rd in the K4 200 m events. Working together, the team managed to bring home silver and bronze medals from the event. Of note is that Amado Cruz also placed 9th overall in the 5000 M race with a time of 26 minutes 16 seconds. The top time was 22 minutes, 30 seconds.
According to the Belize Canoe Association the opportunity marks a major development in the sport of canoeing for Belize, as it introduces a new type of racing to Belizeans and it paves the way to other regional and international events, including the coveted Olympic Games.
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