Brazil will be hoping to enjoy success in front of their home crowd ©Rio 2016

Brazil’s Parapan American Games champions Maria Rizonaide and Evânio da Silva are among the headline competitors at the 2016 International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Powerlifting World Cup in the Carioca Arena 1.

The competition, which is scheduled to take start tomorrow and last until Saturday (January 23), acts as a test event for the Paralympic Games due to take place in Rio de Janeiro later this year.

Hosts Brazil will be hoping to secure a large haul of medals at the event, with several of their medallists from the Toronto 2015 Parapan American Games due to be competing in front of their home crowd.

Rizonaide, 33, was a member of that successful team, lifting a total of 73 kilograms to win the women’s up to 50kg competition in the Canadian city, while Da Silva produced a Parapan American Games record of 190kg to win the men’s up to 80kg event.

The country’s third gold medallist, Felipe Joseano, is also due to compete in the World Cup event, with the under 107kg lifter expected to be joined by team-mates Márcia Menezes and Bruno Carra, winner of silver medals at Toronto 2015.

The Powerlifting World Cup will be held in Carioca Arena 1
The Powerlifting World Cup will be held in Carioca Arena 1 ©Getty Images

Competition in the Barra Olympic Park venue, which recently hosted the Olympic basketball test event, will provide Rio 2016 with the opportunity to assess their venue operations as they build towards the Games.

Tests on their anti-doping procedures, sporting equipment and evaluating the standard of their national referees are also due to be carried out.

“It will be a great test for the whole team while also providing the athletes with a chance to get an understanding of the venue and facilities,” said Pedro Meloni, the Rio 2016 weightlifting and powerlifting manager.

The World Cup is expected to feature around 60 athletes from a total of 20 countries, with competitors offered the opportunity to record qualification standard lifts to move into contention for berths at the Paralympic Games.

Among the headline lifters outside the host country, Colombia's Jainer Cantillo is anticipated to be one of the competitors to watch, with the Parapan American Games champion due to participate in the under 72kg men’s event.

Following the event, athletes will have two further chances to put themselves into contention for Rio 2016, with World Cups due to be held in Dubai and Kuala Lumpur next month. 

The top eight men and highest six ranked women in each weight category on February 29, according to the IPC Powerlifting rankings, will be granted berths at the Games.