AP PHOTOS: Sports selections from Latin America for 2015

AP News
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Posted: Dec 09, 2015 1:01 AM
AP PHOTOS: Sports selections from Latin America for 2015

The past year was filled with sports events in Latin America, both traditional and not so traditional.

In a region where soccer is undisputed king, Chile won the South American crown for the first time as it triumphed in the Copa America tournament on home ground while world favorites Brazil and Argentina managed to lose once again.

The Copa Libertadores and Copa Sudamericana tournaments saw spirited action as the region's best professional soccer teams competed — though not all the clashes were on the field. In Argentina, tempers flared in the stands and fans threw pepper spray at players for the River Plate club during its match with rival Argentine team Boca Juniors. The game had to be suspended.

The soccer craze even made an appearance at Argentina's Motorcycle Grand Prix at the Termas de Rio Hondo circuit. When Italy's Valentino Rossi won the MotoGP race, he celebrated by donning an Argentine national team jersey emblazoned with the name and No. 10 of former star and World Cup winner Diego Armando Maradona.

Drivers from around the world took part in the Dakar Rally, which was held again in South America, passing though Bolivia, Chile and Argentina.

The best track and field athletes from the Western Hemisphere competed at the Pan Am Games in Oshawa, Ontario, while in Palmas, Brazil, indigenous peoples from around the world took part in the World Indigenous Games, a nine-day event promoted as a sort of indigenous Olympics.