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ARANGO BUITRAGO Maritza
Sport Para athletics
NPC Colombia   
GenderWomen
Age40
Place of BirthArgelia, COL
Height1.66 m
Weight 56 kg
Human Interest
Impairment Information
Type of Impairment
Vision impairment
Origin of Impairment
Acquired
Classification
T11, F11
Guide
Jonathan Sanchez, from 2012
Further Personal Information
Marital status
Married
Family
Husband Hugo Armando Gandara, son Juan Esteban
Residence
Bello, COL
Occupation
Athlete
Languages
Spanish
Higher education
University of Antioquia [UDEA]: Medellín, COL
Sport Specific Information
When and where did you begin this sport?
She took up athletics in 2008 in the Antioquia Athletics League in Medellin, Colombia.
Why this sport?
A friend invited her to try the sport. As her results improved, she wanted to continue in order to be a high level athlete. "I wanted to change my life and grow as a person."
Club / Team
Club DELVA: Medellín, COL
Name of coach
Libardo Hoyos, from 2012
Training Regime
She trains every day, sometimes twice a day at the Unidad Deportiva Atanasio Girardot in Medellin, Colombia.
Senior International Debut
Year
2011
Competing for
Colombia
Tournament
World Championships
Location
Christchurch, NZL
General Interest
Memorable sporting achievement
Winning two bronze medals at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.(Athlete, 13 Jul 2017)
Most influential person in career
Her family and son. (Athlete, 13 Jul 2017)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Discipline, consistency and responsibility." (Athlete, 22 Oct 2015)

"Disability is in the mind." (Athlete, 13 Jul 2017)
Awards and honours
In 2016 she received the Athlete of the Year award from the Colombian Association of Sports Journalists. (Minuto30.com, 20 Dec 2016)

She was named Best Para Athlete of the Antioquia region of Colombia in 2015. (capsulas.com.co, 01 Dec 2015)
Ambitions
To compete at the 2017 World Championships in London, England. (Instagram profile, 13 Jun 2017)
Impairment
She was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa in 2003. The illness developed at age 24, and she gradually lost her sight completely. She struggled with depression after the diagnosis. "I spent two years crying, locked in my home with my son. I didn't want to go outside." (bacanika.com.co, 2012; elmundo.com, 05 Mar 2011; lapalabratomada.blogspot.com.es, 01 May 2011; Athlete, 13 Jul 2017)

Competition Highlights (historical)
Paralympic Games
Rank Year Event Result
6 2012 1500m T12 5:05.72
3 2016 4 x 100m Relay T11-13 51.93
3 2016 1500m T11 4:45.33
World Championships
Rank Year Event Result
4 2011 400m T11 1:05.88
2 2011 800m T11 2:31.38
2 2013 800m T11 2:24.85
4 2013 1500m T12 5:07.47
2 2015 1500m T11 4:49.03
3 2015 800m T11  DSQ
2 2017 1500m T11 4:51.19
3 2017 800m T11 2:22.60