10/11/2013 07:15 EDT | Updated 12/11/2013 05:12 EST

Lima, Peru named host of 2019 Pan American Games; will host Games for first time

TORONTO - Lima, Peru, will host the 2019 Pan American Games, winning the honour with an emotional bid presentation featuring a teenaged taekwondo athlete.

Renza Cardenas was just 10 when Lima lost to Toronto four years ago to host the 2015 Pan Am Games.

Cardenas was part of Lima's bid video back then, the tiny boy talking on camera about what the Games would mean to his country.

Four years later, he part of Lima's slick presentation once again, taking the podium in a Peru national track suit, a gold medal hanging around his neck that he won it two weeks ago at the Pan American taekwondo championships.

"Today I'm 14, in 2019, I'll be 20," he told delegates at the 51st Pan American Sport Organization (PASO) General Assembly. "At that time, I would be a Pan American champion. I firmly believe in my dream. So today millions of young Peruvians share the same dream and we want your support.

"Believe in us, we won't let you down."

The Peruvian capital won with 31 votes, easily beating out what was considered its stiffest competition in Santiago, Chile. Santiago and La Punta, Argentina, received nine votes each. Ciudad Bolivar, Venezuela, received eight.

"It was sadness (four years ago)," Cardenas said. "But Lima in those years learned a lot and was able to bid again, and it ended up being victorious.

"The Games mean a great deal for children and youth," he added. "Sports give them something to believe in, they can work really hard and also stay away from drugs."

Delegates from 41 national sport organizations voted Friday, as part of the general assembly.

Lima, which is expected to be home to 12 million people by 2019, will host the Games for the first time.

Lima's bid presenters talked about running a compact Games, featuring two clusters of sport venues. At one point in the presentation Jose Quinones, the president of the Peruvian National Olympic Committee, had to choke back tears.

"The Games will do great things for our country and in turn we will do great things for the Pan American family," Quinones told delegates.

PASO president Don Mario Vazquez Rana said he was pleased to see the improvement Lima had made in the four years between bid presentations.

"Four years ago, we saw when they cried after they lost," Vazquez Rana said. "That stays in the feelings of the people a little bit. Today they laughed and smiled."

Lima supporters erupted in cheers when Vazquez Rana announced the winner. Some pumped fists and chanted "Li-ma! Li-ma!"

Lima Mayor Susana Villaran wrapped Cardenas in a long hug.

Peru's Prime Minister Juan Jimenez addressed delegates, saying "When I took office in 2012, I knew that the Pan American Games in Peru would be a priority for our government."

Santiago previously won the right to host the Games in 1975 and '87, but withdrew both years, the first because of economic problems, and the second, after an earthquake in 1985 left about a million people homeless.

The 2010 Chilean mining accident featured prominently in their bid presentation Friday, with miner Luis Urzua — the shift commander at the time of the disaster — telling delegates that Chile would run the Games with the same determination they showed in rescuing all 33 miners.

La Punta's presentation stressed environmentalism and sustainability. Argentina has twice before hosted the Pan Ams, in Buenos Aires in 1951 and Mar del Plata in 1995.

Bolivar stressed its location at the top of the South American continent, as an advantage, calling it "The Gateway to South America."

Caracas, Venezuela, hosted the Games in 1983.

Toronto 2015 officials made a lengthy presentation a day earlier, and their progress was met with praise, leaving potentially a tough act to follow for Lima.

But Vazquez Rana said he hopes the Peruvian capital to top Toronto.

"This is a star that escalates upwards," he said. "Rio (Pan Am hosts in 2007) was great. Guadalajara (in 2011) was fantastic. We see it in Toronto. We hope that Lima's Games will be even better than Toronto's."