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  • Olympic Champion Ernesto Canto, 61


    (ATR) The Mexican Olympic sport continues to receive condolences from different parts of the world for the death of the Olympic and world walking champion Ernesto Canto.

    Ernesto Canto 1959-2020 (COM)
    Canto, considered one of the best athletes in the history of Mexican sports, died at the age of 61 as a result of liver and pancreatic cancer in a hospital in the Mexican capital where he had been hospitalized several weeks ago.

    The president of the Mexican Olympic Committee (COM) Carlos Padilla Becerra said “Mexico loses one of its great exponents of universal sport. His successful career gave luster and glory to our sport ”.

    During the government ceremony for the 45th anniversary of the National Sports Award, the director of the National Sports Commission, Olympic runner-up Ana Gabriela Guevara asked for a minute of applause in tribute to Canto. The President of the Republic, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, was present at the event.

    Canto Gudiño, born on October 18, 1959 in Mexico City, was a specialist in the 20 kilometers "and in his time nobody could surpass him in any international event," underlines a statement from COM.

    Canto won the gold medal at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games. In 1983, the International Athletics Federation distinguished him as the 'Best Walker in the World' at 20 kilometers.

    His idol was his compatriot José Pedraza, who had won silver in the 1968 Mexico Olympic Games.

    Canto had his golden age in the 80's. He won the 20 km at the Central American and Caribbean Games in Havana 1982. A year later, he topped the podium at the Pan American Games in Caracas, took home the world title in Helsinki and broke the world hour mark at the Softeland Grand Prix, Norway.

    In 1984 he won the Olympic gold in a 1-2 with his countryman Raúl González.

    The body of champion Ernesto Canto was exhibited in the same room where posthumous honors were also paid to the 80th Moscow Olympic medalist diver Carlos Girón last January,

    Jordi Llopart at 1980 Moscow Olympics (Wikipedia)
    In 1975 Girón was the first athlete together with the shooter Olegario Vázquez Raña to receive the National Sports Award when it was established.

    In this year 2020, the sports world also lamented the losses of race walkers Jordi Llopart of Spain and Hartwig Gauder of Germany.

    Llopart was the first Spanish athlete to get on an Olympic podium, taking silver in the 50-kilometer march in Moscow in 1980. He was 68 when he died 10 days ago.

    Gauder triumphed in the 50-kilometer walk at the Moscow Olympics by nearly two minutes when he competed for East Germany, and would win bronze at Seoul 1988. He was 65 when he died in April.

    Homepage photo: COM

    Written by Miguel Hernandez

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