Top-10 finish the aim for Brazil with one year to go
By Tatiana Ramil and Andrew Downie
RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Foreign coaches, big investment and a focus on new sports are Brazil's weapons as the 2016 Olympics hosts target a top-10 place in the medal table for the first time at the Rio de Janeiro Games a year from now.
Brazil hopes to win medals in at least 13 different sports with a quantum leap in performance.
The 10th spot on the medals table at the last two summer Games was held by France and Australia, both of whom won medals in more than 10 disciplines.
But finishing in the top 10 is a big challenge for a nation that devotes most of its time and money to soccer.
"It's a tough challenge but it's not impossible," Erika Miranda, a silver medallist at the world judo championships in Rio two years ago, told Reuters.
"Judo is one of the sports that must weigh in with medals if we are to finish in the top 10. But when you prepare, you are confident and I am confident we will do well."
Brazil has historically won gold, silver and bronze medals in fewer than 10 disciplines, with most coming in volleyball, judo, athletics and sailing.
But as it prepares to wow the world and its home fans in 2016, the South American nation has given special attention to individual sports that offer more bang for their buck. Continued...