LIMA, Peru — Northern Iowa track and field athlete Jessica Heims broke her own world record and defeated the field by over 4.5 meters to capture gold in the discus at the 2019 Parapan America Games in Lima Peru, Wednesday.
After a scratch on the first throw, Heims, a junior from Swisher, hit 29.89 meters (98-feet) on her second heave. The mark would have been good enough to pick up the gold, but she wasn’t satisfied with just the win.
On her third throw, She launched a toss of 34.4 meters (112-feet-10) which surpassed her world record throw of 34.15 from the University of Wisconsin Alumni Meet in May.
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Silver medal winner Noriaivis De Las Heras of Cuba threw the discus 29.80. The bronze was picked up by Team USA teammate Sydney Barta with a throw of 26.71.
It’s the second international event of the year for Heims, who captured gold in the 100, 200 and discus at the Para Athletics Grand Prix in Italy in June.
Heims is not done this season, she is set to compete at the 2019 World Para Athletics Championship in Dubai in mid-November. The competition in November serves as the qualifier for all track and field events for the 2020 Summer Paralympics in Tokyo.