Photo: Meet Leryn Franco: From Paraguayan Model to Olympic Athlete
While many may recognize Leryn Franco as one of the models in Sports Illustrated‘s swimsuit edition, other know her as a Paraguayan Olympian.
She is currently in London for the 2012 Olympic games and was one of the most searched for Olympians on the internet during the 2008 games in Beijing, second only to U.S. swimmer Michael Phelps.
While she is competing in track and field as a javelin thrower she admits that she is not just an athlete. In 2006, Franco finished second in the her country’s beauty pageant, Miss Universo Paraguay. Though she finished second, her career skyrocketed and in 2011 she appeared in the coveted SI: Swimsuit Edition
“My situation is different from most of the other javelin throwers. I am not just an athlete. I have to be honest, my career is really in the media,” she told Yahoo! Sports just a few days ago. “
While she has trained for her Olympic event, Franco has said she doesn’t expect to medal, but does said, “For me the best reward is just to be here. Getting to the Olympics is like a medal for me.”
The women’s qualifying round in javelin takes place on August 7.