Surprising winners at the first day of the Pan American Games in Toronto at day one when the lightweight categories started their journey. The biggest surprise was a gold medal for Lenin Preciado of Ecuador. For the first time in the history Ecuador won a judo gold medal at the PanAm Games.
Three times a final was lost by an Ecuador judoka, in 20076 for the last time by Roberto Ibanez and Carmen Chala. In the 2015 with Olympic medallist Felipe Kitadai as opponent it wouldn’t be easy but it was the small Ecuadorian who won the gold medal U60kg and uncrowned Kitadai as winner in 2011.
Also the two bronze medal fights had a surprising winner. John Futtinico (COL) defeated Juan Postigos who won silver in 2011 in the previous edition. Yandry Torres of Cuba defeated Sergio Pessoa from home nation Canada.
In the women’s U48kg we knew that Dayaris Mestre is a strong judoka. But that the Cuban could beat World number two Paula Pareto who could take her second PanAm victory, that was an awesome surprise. Edna Carrillo of Mexico was expected on the stage with her could results over the last two years. Nathalia Brigida is a good replacement of Sarah Menezes for Brazil, but still of another level. She took a need bronze medal in Toronto U48kg.
Less of a surprise was the gold medal for Brazil U52kg by Erika Miranda. Although the Brazilians theoretically could have taken three gold medals at the first day, it was only Miranda who met the expectations. In the final U52kg she defeated Ecaterina Guica of Canada who had the best performance for her nation at day 1. The third of the world defeated the 21-year old Guica with her strong grip dominating her opponent.
Bronze U52kg was for Angelica Delgado of the USA and Gretel Romero.
Brazil leads the medal table after day one as expected.