Spain’s Maialen Chourraut Completes Olympic Medal Set with Canoeing Silver at Tokyo Games

2020 Tokyo Games

Maialen Chourraut couldn’t pull off a repeat, but she’s still shining bright…

The 38-year-old Spanish slalom canoeist, who won the gold medal in the K1 event at the 2016 Rio Games, had to settle for silver after the women’s slalom K-1 canoeing event at the 2020 Tokyo Games.

Maialen Chourraut

It was Chourraut’s fourth Olympic appearance, having also won bronze at the 2012 London Games.

With this silver, Chourraut, Spain’s oldest competitor at the Tokyo Games this year, has completed her gold-silver-bronze set of Olympic medals.

Along with the silver medal in canoeing, Spain has also claimed another silver medal in Taekwondo, as well as a bronze medal in men’s cycling.

Brazil’s Italo Ferreira Claims First-Ever Surfing Gold at Tokyo Games

2020 Tokyo Games

Italo Ferreira has earned his place in Olympic history…

The 27-year-old Brazilian professional surfer overcame challenging conditions in brilliant style to win historic first Olympic surfing gold medals at the 2020 Tokyo Games on Tuesday.

Italo Ferreira

Competing at Tsurigasaki Surfing Beach, Ferreira recovered from breaking his board on the first wave to beat Japan’s Kanoa Igarashi in the shortboard final.

Australia’s Owen Wright took the men’s bronze after a tense 35-minute battle with world number one Gabriel Medina, edging out the Brazilian by two-tenths of a point.

The final day of competition started with big, clean waves that delighted the competitors, but a strong onshore breeze picked up to make the swell choppier and more inconsistent with good waves harder to come by.

Italo Ferreira

It made no difference to Ferreira as he went on the attack in pursuit of Olympic gold.

Knowing he had done enough to win, Ferreira began surfing his way in to the shore with a minute to go, greeting the final horn with his arms stretched to the heavens before being carried shoulder-high from the water by his teammates.

“I think it’s one of the best days of my life, for sure. For me that was a long day and it was a dream come true, for sure. The last couple of months I’ve been training a lot, just to live in this moment,” an emotional Ferreira told reporters.

He also gave Ferreira the first gold for Brazil at the Tokyo Games.

Ali Aguilar & Rachel Garcia: First American Latinx Athletes to Win Medals at the Tokyo Games

2020 Tokyo Games

Ali Aguilar and Rachel Garcia are silver belles… 

The 25-year-old Latina softball player and the 24-year-old Latina softball player are the first American Latinx athletes to claim a medal at the 2020 Tokyo Games.

Team USA Softball

Aguilar, Garcia and their Team USA mates had to settle for the silver after losing the gold medal match in softball to Japan by a score of 2-0.

As with any high-stakes softball game, there were many little moments that ultimately proved crucial. But the entire game was summed up in the bottom of the sixth. With two on and one out and slugger Amanda Chidester up, a moment that will be remembered for a long time by the players in this game unfolded.

Chidester hit a rocket down the third-base line that smashed into Japan third baseman Yu Yamamoto‘s arm. At that point, the ball could’ve gone anywhere, and it seemed certain the Americans were going to get one run and maybe even two. But the ball bounded right to shortstop Mana Atsumi, who made a leaping catch and doubled off a runner to end the inning.

The stunned looks on the U.S. faces following that moment summed up the game.

“Fortune went the way of Japan on that,” said U.S. coach Ken Eriksen. “It wasn’t our day, we had some bad luck.”

It’s the first Olympic medal for Aguilar and Garcia.

Kany Garcia to Launch U.S. Tour in the Fall

Kany Garcia is bringing her show to the U.S.

The 38-year-old Puerto Rican singer and songwriter will kick off 2022 with two concerts in San Juan’s iconic Coliseo de Puerto Rico, but first, she’ll trek across the U.S. in a newly announced 2021 tour.

Kany Garcia

“This is the big surprise I had prepared,” Garcia expressed to her fans on social media. “In a bit over a month we’re touring the U.S. How exciting to meet again.”

Garcia will kick off her U.S. tour on September 8 in Atlanta’s Buckhead Theatre and wrap up on October 17 at Los Angeles’ The Belasco.

In between, Garcia will visit fans in New York, Miami, Dallas and Chicago, to name a few.

Presented by La Buena Fortuna and Sony Music Latin, the Latin Grammy-winning artist will perform some of her biggest hits like “Lo Que En Ti Veo,” “Búscame,” “Titanic” and “Nuevas Mentiras.”

kany-garcia-tour-poster

Tickets will be available for pre-sale as of Thursday and to the general public on Friday. Fans can find tickets on TicketmasterTickeri or Pietix, depending on the city.

Garcia is confirmed to participate in the 2021 Billboard Latin Music Week returning to Miami from September 20 to 24 with a weeklong event that unites the top Latin hitmakers, influencers and industry leaders, as well as features live performances and conversations with superstars.

Brazil’s Fernando Scheffer Breaks South American Record in Men’s 200m Freestyle at Tokyo Games

2020 Tokyo Games

Fernando Scheffer is proving his medal

The 23-year-old Brazilian swimmer, competing in his first Olympics, claimed the bronze medal in the men’s 200m freestyle swimming event at the 2020 Tokyo Games.

Fernando Scheffer

Scheffer broke the South American record in the event’s heats, with a time of 1:45.05, ranking 2nd for the semifinal.

After qualifying with the last place in the semifinals, Scheffer outperformed himself again in the final, beating his South American record again by a wide margin, with a time of 1:44.66, to claim the bronze.

Fernando Scheffer

In doing so, Scheffer repeated the feat of Gustavo Borges, the last Brazilian to obtain an Olympic medal in the event.

Scheffer lowered the South American record by nearly 1 second at the Olympics to win the medal.

Florencia Lozano to Appear in Netflix’s Drama Series “Breathe”

Florencia Lozano is breathe-ing easy…

The 51-year-old Latina actress, best known for portraying Téa Delgado on ABC’s daytime series One Life to Live, has landed a recurring role in Breathe, Netflix’s one-hour drama series from Blindspot creator Martin Gero and writer-executive producer Brendan Gall, and Warner Bros. Television.

Florencia Lozano

Lozano will recur alongside 40-year-old Colombian actor Juan Pablo Espinosa on the series, which stars Melissa Barrera.

In Breathe, written by Gero and Gall, when a small plane crashes in the middle of the Canadian wilderness, a lone woman (Barrera) must battle the elements and odds to survive. Barrera’s Liv is a razor-sharp Manhattan attorney who finds herself profoundly out of her comfort zone when her plane crashes and she must battle for survival.

Lozano and Espinosa will play Liv’s mother and father, respectively.

Lozano co-wrote and stars in Life After You, which was awarded Best Feature and Best Actress at the Nice International Film Festival. She will next be seen in the feature Here AfterHer previous television credits include the starring role of Claudia Messina on Netflix’s Narcos, as well as Madam Secretary, The Blacklist, Blue Bloods, Law & Order: SVU, among others.

Espinosa most recently starred in Focus Features’ comedy Half Brothers. His other recent credits include Apple TV’s Acapulco, Cocaine Godmother opposite Catherine Zeta Jones, and a recurring role as Luis Carlos Galán on Netflix’s Narcos. In Latin America, he’s known for his work on El Secretario, A Corazon Abierto and La Fan with NBC/Telemundo, among others.

Brazil’s Rayssa Leal Claims Silver Medal at Tokyo Games

2020 Tokyo Games

Rayssa Leal is livin’ a teenage dream…

The 13-year-old skateboarder, known as “A Fadinha do Skate“, which translates roughly to “The Skate Fairy,” has skated her way onto the medal stand at the 2020 Tokyo Games after the women’s street skateboarding competition.

Rayssa Leal

Leal was thisclose to taking home the gold medal before Japan’s Momiji Nishiya used her final trick to leapfrog Leal with a score of 15.26. Leal finished with a score of 14.64, just behind Nishiya, earning her the silver medal.

They both were nearly the youngest medalists in Olympic history. Denmark’s Inge Sorensen was 12 years and 24 days old when he earned a bronze medal in the 200-meter breaststroke in the 1936 Olympics.

Each competitor had two 45-second runs and five individual tricks in which judges had an opportunity to grade. However, Nishiya was the only competitor that was able to land her final trick in the event.

“I’m very happy to make this dream come true,” Leal said following the event. “It’s a dream for my parents and it’s a dream for me to be here at the Olympics. It’s fantastic to represent Brazil and get this medal. I had great fun.”

Leal introduced herself to the skateboarding world in 2015, when, while wearing a fairytale princess costume, the then 8-year-old went viral for her skating prowess. Even skating legend Tony Hawk tweeted about her back then:

Six years later, Leal is an Olympic silver medalist.

Spain’s David Valero Serrano Pedals His Way to Bronze at the Tokyo Games

2020 Tokyo Games

David Valero Serrano is celebrating a comeback for the ages…

The 32-year-old Spanish cross-country mountain biker gave his country a surprise medal at the 2020 Tokyo Games, taking home the bronze in the men’s mountain bike race.

David Valero Serrano

Valero, who finished in ninth place at the 2016 Rio Games, made an anthological comeback after being caught by one of the cuts at the start of the race.

He had a lot of exit problems. After a very quick start, he had stayed in one of the tail groups. Valero, far from resigning himself, continued working throughout the test. In a demanding route of just over four kilometers, he improved lap by lap.

In an extraordinary effort, he reached the group that was fighting for the medals. He then managed to cut the gap with the cyclists who were fighting for third place and add a medal that wasn’t expected at all.

His work has given the second medal for the Spanish team after the one achieved in Taekwondo by Adriana Cerezo.

Carmen Farala Named Winner of Inaugural Season of “Drag Race España”

Carmen Farala has sashayed-away with the crown…

The 30-year-old Spanish drag performer, whose real name is Daniel Mora, has been crowned the inaugural winner of Drag Race España, the offshoot of the U.S.’ Emmy-winning reality competition series RuPaul’s Drag Race.

Carmen Farala

A jury made up of presenter Supremme de Luxe, designer Ana Locking and filmmakers/actors Javier Ambrossi and his real-life partner Javier Calvo decided in the last episode, broadcast on Sunday night, that Farala would take home the crown and the 30,000 euro prize.

Farala, who never found herself in the bottom two during the competition, beat out Killer Queen and Sagittaria for the title.

For eight weeks, the finalists have taken part in all kinds of tests and Farala managed to win three maxi challenges during the season: the tribute to La Veneno, the night of the 1,000 Rosalías and the makeover of rugby players.

Produced by Atresmedia Televisión in collaboration with Buendía Estudios, the Drag Race format landed in Spain on May 30 on the Atresplayer Premium platform.

Carlos Alcaraz Claims First Career ATP Tour Title in First Attempt at Croatia Open

Carlos Alcaraz  didn’t have to wait long to claim his first ATP Tour title…

The 18-year-old Spanish tennis player and #NextGenATP star, competing in his first-ever ATP Tour final, defeated former World No. 7 Richard Gasquet emphatically 6-2, 6-2 to triumph at the Plava Laguna Croatia Open Umag.

Carlos Alcaraz

In winning the title on Sunday evening in Umag, Alcaraz becomes the youngest champion in more than a decade.

Alcaraz is the youngest tour-level champion since 18-year-old Kei Nishikori emerged victorious in Delray Beach in 2008.

”It’s amazing. I have a lot of emotions. I’m really, really happy with this victory, this win, my first ATP [title],” Alcaraz said. “I’m going to enjoy this moment a lot.”

Alcaraz crushed a final forehand winner to close out his victory before launching a ball high into the Croatian night. Alcaraz’s coach and mentor, former World No. 1 Juan Carlos Ferrero, rose from his seat and pumped his fist while sporting a wide smile across his face to celebrate his charge’s breakthrough. Shortly thereafter, the pair shared a warm embrace.

Carlos Alcaraz

This was an ironic matchup in Alcaraz’s first championship clash. Gasquet was also a highly regarded teenager, who claimed his first tour-level match win as a 15-year-old in 2002, more than a year before Alcaraz was born. The Frenchman remains the youngest match winner in ATP Tour history (since 1990).

Alcaraz has had plenty of eyes on him since bursting onto the ATP Tour in Rio de Janeiro in 2020, when he also won three ATP Challenger Tour titles. It was a matter of when, not if he would position himself for tour-level glory. And on his first opportunity, the teen showed no nerves. The seventh seed overwhelmed the 15-time ATP Tour titlist with impressive power and poise over one hour and 17 minutes.

“I had a lot of good moments in this tournament. I beat five great tennis players,” Alcaraz said. “I think that I grew up a lot in this tournament and I keep a lot of experience from this tournament. It’s going to be useful for the future.”

Gasquet has one of the most picturesque one-handed backhands of his generation and a great ability to mix up spins and speeds to trouble his opponents. But Alcaraz was never flustered against the veteran, unleashing one lethal strike after another. He broke the Frenchman’s serve four times without losing serve himself.

The 18-year-old set the tone early in the first set, cracking a rocket-like inside-in forehand for a winner to break for a 2-1 advantage, and he never looked back. Gasquet double faulted to give his younger opponent a break advantage in the second set, and he was never able to work his way back into the match.

The Frenchman earned three break points at 1-4 in the second set, but he was never able to control the rally on big points. Gasquet, who needed three hours and 11 minutes to win his semi-final against Daniel Altmaier on Saturday, was trying to win his first ATP Tour title since ’s-Hertogenbosch in 2018.

“It was tough for me to play [with] full intensity. I had a tough match yesterday. It was tough, and especially with a guy like Carlos, who is playing really fast with a lot of energy and spin,” Gasquet said. “He’s playing unbelievable. He’s only 18 and of course he has a great future and I just couldn’t play at his level and his intensity. That was the key of the match and he didn’t lose a point. He played well, very solid. He’s a great player.”

Alcaraz is the youngest Spaniard to win an ATP Tour title since countryman Rafael Nadal claimed his first trophy in Sopot in 2004. Nadal was just eight days younger that day than Alcaraz is today.