Cuba

Athletics in Cuba
For a relatively small country (population around 12 million) without considerable resources or athletics facilities compared to other nations, Cuba has done remarkably well to produce some superb athletics talents in recent years. Cuba's overall medals total at major championships is only just behind that of Australia, emphasising their success story.

One stand-out Cuban from yesteryear was Alberto Juantorena, who dominated the 400m and 800m during the mid-1970s and is the first and only athlete to win both events at the Olympic Games. Indeed he set world records at each distance in an incredible career (1:43.50 for 800m and 44.26 for 400m, which was a low-altitude WR).
 


Magical Moment
It had never been achieved before and has never been seen since... the figures of 2.44m - or, more importantly, precisely 8 feet - were realised by legendary Cuban jumper Javier
Sotomayor in 1993 at Salamanca. On only his fourth jump of the entire competition, he cleared 2.45m to the delight and amazement of the watching crowd. He went on to clear 2.40m or more on 24 occasions, including 17 of the all-time top 24 clearances. Nobody has come close to his World Record figures since.


Current Stars
Dayron Robles is Cuba's only current World Record holder and has consistently run around the 13-second mark for the 110m Hurdles - a time few others can attain. Most of the country's star names are in field events, including Yargeris Savigne (2011 World-leader in the Triple Jump), Yarelys Barrios (2010 & 2011 Diamond League winner), Guillermo Martinez (4th-ranked in 2011 and Pan American Games Champ) and Alexis Copello (17.68m Triple Jump in 2011). Cuba failed to win a gold at London 2012.



Go Back to Home Page
   Cuba - Fact File NEW

 

Cuba - Dayron RoblesCuba - Yargeris SavigneCuba - Leonel SuarezCuba - Yarelys Barrios