16 Rio Olympic participants have ties to Alabama

16 Rio Olympic participants have ties to Alabama

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL (WSFA) - Athletes from all over the world have flocked to Brazil to participate in the 2016 Rio Summer Olympic games, including 16 athletes with ties to Alabama.

The 16 Athletes represent countries from all over the world including France, Hungary, Luxembourg and Zimbabwe.

Opelika native Monzavous Edwards will represent Nigeria in the 100-meter race in Rio. Edwards, an alumnus of Opelika High School, has dual citizenship, which is what allows him to represent Nigeria.

Texas native Walton Glenn Eller will represent the United States in the double trap shooting event in the Rio Games. Eller, who graduated from Auburn University in 2004, will be competing in his fifth Olympic Games. He competed in the 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012 games, winning a gold medal in double trap shooting.

Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace attended Auburn University from 2009-2012, and will represent the Bahamas in the 50 and 100-meter freestyle races. This will be Arianna's third consecutive trip to the Summer Games after debuting in the Beijing Games in 2008. She was the first swimmer from the Bahamas to reach an Olympic Final when she made the 50-meter freestyle finals in the 2012 games.

Marcelo Chierighini will represent Brazil in the Rio Games by participating in the 100-meter freestyle and the 4x100-meter freestyle relay. He is making his second consecutive Summer Olympic appearance after competing in London in 2012. Chierighini attended Auburn from 2010-1014.

Stephanie Horner will represent Canada in the Open Water 10K event in Rio. This will be Horner's third consecutive appearance in the Summer Games. Horner attended Auburn from 2008-2010.

Fred Bousquet, who attended Auburn from 2003-2005, will represent France in the 50-meter freestyle event. The Rio games will be the fourth Olympic Games that Bousquet has represented France in. He won the silver medal in the 4x100-meter freestyle relay at the 2008 Beijing Games. Bousquet earned 21 All-American honors during his time at Auburn.

Alex Amankwah, who attended the University of Alabama, will represent Ghana in the 800-meter track event. Amankwah was the first Ghana athlete to qualify for the Rio Games.

Kirani James will represent Grenada in the 400-meter track event. The former Alabama student won Grenada's first ever Olympic gold medal in the men's 400-meter run in the 2012 London Games.

Luis Carlos Martinez is currently enrolled at Auburn University, and will represent Guatemala in the 100-meter butterfly. This will be Martinez's first Olympic appearance.

Current Auburn University student Peter Holoda will swim on Hungary's 4x100-meter freestyle relay team in the Rio Games. Holoda is making his first Olympic appearance.

Ziv Kalontarov, who is a current student at Auburn, will swim in the 50-meter freestyle for Israel. This is Kalontarov's first Olympic appearance.

Julie Meynen, who is an incoming freshman at Auburn, will represent Luxembourg in the 50 and 100-meter freestyles in her first Olympic appearance.

Ahmed Ali will represent Sudan in the 200-meter track event in Rio. Ali was a student at the University of Alabama.

George Bovell will represent Trinidad & Tobago in the 50-meter freestyle in the Rio Games. Bovell won a bronze medal in the 2004 games in Athens. He attended Auburn from 2003-2006, where he earned 25 All-American honors during his career.

Jareem Richards, a student at the University of Alabama, will represent Trinidad & Tobago in the 4x400-meter track event.

Kristy Coventry attended Auburn University from 2002-2005. She will represent Zimbabwe in the 100 and 200-meter backstroke in the Rio Games, which will mark her fifth consecutive Olympic appearance. Coventry is the most decorated Olympian in Auburn swimming history. She has won seven Olympic medals in her five appearances, three of them coming in the 2004 Games and four in the 2008 Games. Coventry has won two gold medals, four silver medals and one bronze medal.

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