Weinberger Takes Gold in PanAm Games Open Water

PUERTO VALLARTA, Mexico (October 22, 2011) – Richard Weinberger (UVPCS) earned his second major international victory this season on Saturday as he won the men’s 10-kilometre open water swimming event at the Pan American Games.

Weinberger clocked one hour, 57 minutes and 31 seconds in a photo finish victory.  This past summer at the Olympic test event in London, the 21-year-old Weinberger defeated a top international field for the gold.

Arthur Frayler of the U.S., was second in 1:57:31.3 and Guillermo Bertola of Argentina third in 1:57:33.9.  

‘’The race was very hard,’’ said Weinberger.  ‘’There were a lot of fast and experienced swimmers.  I tried to take it out fast and push the pace.  In the last part, I was able to out sprint everybody to get the win.  I’m really happy.’’

In the women’s 10 kilometre, Cecilia Biagioli of Argentina was the winner in 2:04:11.5, Poliana Okimoto of Brazil second in 2:05:51.3 and Christine Jennings of the U.S., third in 2:05:52.2.

Zsofia Balazs of Toronto was in the medal hunt until late in the race and took seventh spot in 2:06:22.2.

‘’I was happy I was able to stay so close most of the race,’’ said Balazs, 21.  ‘’The water temperature was high which makes it a lot harder but I hung on as best I could.’’

With the pool and open water combined, Canadian swimmers completed the Games with five medals (two gold, one silver and two bronze.)

Full results: http://info.guadalajara2011.org.mx/ENG/ZZ/ZZS103A_OW@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@ENG.htm

Team Canada: www.swimming.ca