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Brazil look to London as launch pad for 2016 success

July 17, 2012

LONDON:  Brazilian Olympic officials are hoping that the country’s athletes can use the London Games as a launch pad for success before preparing to host the 2016 edition in Rio de Janeiro.

Brazil are keen to improve on the 15 medals won at Beijing in 2008 and, with the country’s economy buoyant, have set up camp at Crystal Palace, south London, enjoying the backing of politicians and sponsors alike.

There is even a robot among their entourage, already called upon to help out when gymnast Lais da Souza suffered a recent injury.

Bernard Rajzman, head of Brazil’s Olympic Mission, is confident that improved athletic preparation and resources will see a record medal haul over the coming weeks.

“It is true that Brazil has grown quite a lot and the whole world has acknowledged that,” said Rajzman, a silver medallist with the country’s indoor volleyball team at the 1984 Los Angeles Games.

“Medals just don’t appear overnight. We are working already to prepare for 2016 and I am sure that all our efforts would make Brazil proud, so we can become part of the first world in Olympic terms.

“Brazil’s men and women’s teams are always able to get on to the podiums.

“This is important because it gives us the foundations to achieve success in other sports-



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