It was at the age of 5 that his life changed. At such a young age, he was recommended to practice martial arts due to his hyperactivity. However, he would not find any hobby in him, but a passion with which he has managed to hang more than one medal around his neck. This is how, at the age of 29, Alonso struggles to continue adding victories for Peru, since he is currently one of the great promises of national judo.
Since you started to the present, how much has national judo grown?
Back then there was no support in sport, it was just football. I remember that we worked in a super small place with a wall in the middle, it was a little uncomfortable as more people came. When I started, I did it with a litter of 30 children, of which only I was left. Now there is much more economic support, although it is true, now we are going through a political crisis, the boom in sport was when the Lima 2019 Pan American Games took place. I cannot complain, although I am always looking for more.
The good news is that progress has been made…
Yes. We have come a long way, in ODESUR we have finished second, after Brazil, which is a world power. At the South American level we are in the top 2, but at the Pan American level we are still there. Perhaps four or eight years from now we can see better results.
You live in the United States, do you continue training there?
Until last year I lived there much longer, because I knew that the level of training here was bad, because we didn’t have good coaches. With the arrival of this new coach, Justo Noda, a Cuban, changed. I came here last year to do preseason and return to the United States, but he spoke to me and told me: I’m going to focus on you, I’m going to make you achieve your goals, your dreams, but I need you here.” So, that made me change a lot of things in my life. I have decided to stay here until Paris 2024.
Did you ensure your classification to Santiago 2023?
Now I am well positioned, I am leading the Pan American ranking. Let’s go 10, it’s very difficult for me to get out of that ranking, so, mathematically I’m qualified for the Olympic Games.
Last year the road to Paris 2024 started, how about this new beginning?
Last year due to logistical and political issues, we have not been able to go out to compete much. There were always excuses that there is no money, there is no time, we cannot travel, among others. So, that frustrated us a lot, because we were already prepared to compete. Last year I won three medals, one from another, another silver and another bronze that helped me accumulate scores, but that accumulated would have been more if I had competed. This year that there are Pan American Games, the support will increase, perhaps that can help us to achieve the goal of being in Paris in 2024.
How do you see Paris 2024?
Now with maturity, with determination, with the desire to achieve that long-awaited goal. In London 2012 I was there and I injured my knee training before the competition. In Rio I barely stayed, in Tokyo I qualified, the pandemic arrived and they changed the classification system, I got Covid, so I couldn’t prepare myself as I should, to be able to compete. Now I am determined to do it and I know I can do it, I am training like I have never trained before in my life.
The psychological factor is decisive…
Very important. We have a psychologist at IPD who has worked with us for years in the selection. It is very important because I had a very big problem last year with the federation, I went through a stress picture, it affected me, I even got vitiligo. He supported me a lot.
Will this be the last chance to see you at the Olympic Games?
It is true that judo is a short sports career, it is not like soccer that can be played professionally until the age of 40. I don’t see myself in high performance after Paris 2024, my mind is preparing for the Olympic Games.
Can we see you as a coach?
My post-Paris 2024 dream is to open my judo academy, but not just judo but mixed martial arts, self-defense. When I was a child, Judo was not known, they always confused me with karate, in my opinion, not for some, but for me karate is very easy, judo costs more, it hurts more, you really have to like it a lot to continue . One of my objectives is to massify judo at the national level and that is not seen today.
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