A week before the start of the Paralympic Games in Tokyo, a large part of the Belgian delegation traveled to Japan. With great ambitions.
31 Belgian Paralympic athletes (and Aniline Monsieur, who serves as a tandem guide) will soon represent Belgium at the Paralympics and a large number of them have already left for Tokyo today.
“It’s been 5 long years since Rio,” said Guillaume Joubert of the Belgian Paralympic Committee. “I can’t believe we’re leaving now.”
Rio was a huge success for the Belgian national team with 11 medals. “A good performance would be great. We’re aiming for 10 medals, and that looks like a possible result.”
There are many candidates for Belgian medals. “In table tennis we have two Paralympic champions: Laurens Devos and Florian Van Acker. Joachim Gérard is a well-known name in wheelchair tennis (he recently won Wimbledon) and in cycling we have a lot of candidates, both on the road like as well as on the slopes, there are also Horse riding, and of course athletics, with Peter Jenin.
It’s been 5 long years since Rio. I can’t believe we’re leaving now.
“No family or friends, but it is necessary that they be with us”
As with the Olympics, the Paralympic framework was kept to a minimum. Family and friends are not welcome anyway.
Joubert asserts: “All that is necessary is there.” “But the family is not there and that is very unfortunate. With a positive result, but perhaps more with a negative result. It was the same with the Olympians and he did well there.”
The journey of a group of people with disabilities to Japan, who also take a lot of materials with them, is not easy. “You have cyclists with their air-conditioned bikes, like a tandem bike or a hand bike, you have the athletes with their wheels, … In addition, you also have a lot of medical and paramedical items. Kudos to my colleagues who arranged all these.”
Belgian delegation to Tokyo
- Jean Francois Deberge (Route – MH3)
- Maxime Hordes (Remote – MH1)
- Jonas van de Sten (Route – MH4)
- Tim Selene (weg – MT2)
- Laurence VandeVyver (remote – WH3)
- Griet Hoet (+ Anneleen Monsieur) (Road + Route – WB)
- Ewoud Vromant (Road + Ramp – MC2)
- Dedric Schelfhout (Road + Track – MC3)
- Peter Gene (T51)
- Joyce Lefevre (T34)
- Gitte Haenen (T63)
- Roger Habash (T52)
- Laurens Devos (TT9)
- Florian Van Acker (TT11)
- BART Brands (TT5)
- Barbara Menese (Group C)
- Manon Claes (Group D)
- Michel George (Group E)
- Kevin Van Hamm (Group E)
- Tatiana Lebrun (SB9)
- Aymeric Parmentier (SB14-S14)
- Joachim Gerrard
- Jeff Vandorp
- Clison Mabrini
- Wassim Amnir
- Bruno Vanhoef
- Tom Vanhove
- Arne Vanhoef
- Rob Eggson
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