Black Sands swimmers qualify for CARIFTA 2018
from October 19 to 22, 2017, the Titans Aquatic Invitational Swim Meet was held at the Barbados Aquatic Centre and was attended by 22 Black Sand Swim Squad swimmers from St Vincent and the Grenadines. The competition featured 15 clubs from Barbados, Grenada, Trinidad, Guatemala, the USA and other Caribbean islands.
A new name to swimming success, Eltonteâ Leonard led the way in the boys 9 to 10 age group, swimming himself to a total of two gold, three silver and three bronze medals. Whilst doing so, Leonard smashed seven SVG national records, achieved two AAAA standard times, putting him in the top five per cent of 9 to 10-year-old age group swimmers in the USA and he has qualified for CARIFTA 2018. By the end of the event, Leonard came home with the 3rd place overall champion trophy.
Swimming in the same age group, youngster Jayson Sandy also swam in record-breaking form, winning gold in both the 50 and 100 metre breaststroke. Sandyâs times also achieved AAAA standard, broke the SVG national record and qualified him for CARIFTA 2018.
In the girls 9 to 10 age group, the youngest of the Joachims, Jamie Joachim, swam herself to the medal podium, winning two silver and one bronze medal and broke three SVG national records.
Nikolas Sylvester included himself in the medal count by winning one gold and three bronze medals in the boys 15 years and over category. He was joined by Shane Cadogan with three silver and one bronze medal. Dillon Gooding wasnât to be left behind and captured one silver medal.
Twenty-two individual medals were proudly brought back to SVG, but the medal count and record-breaking didnât stop there. In the relays, Black Sands swimmers made their presence known by swimming both an A and B team in the boys 15 and over medley relay. Quartet Cruz Halbich, Alex Cyrus, Kyle John and Jeron Thompson made up the B team and they swam themselves to a silver medal and broke the meet record by just over half a second. Then came the A team of Dillon Gooding, Nikolas Sylvester, Shane Cadogan and Aaron Defreitas, who demonstrated the high swimming standard coming out of SVG right now. The four boys stormed into top spot, winning the gold medal and smashing the meet record by over four seconds, making it a Vincy one-two on the medal podium. The 10 and under boys relay team proved their point too. With the help of Seth Byron from St Vincentâs Blue Marlins Swim Club, Brandon George, Jason Sandy and Eltonteâ Leonard swam to the top spot, winning the gold in the 4 x 100 medley relay and girls Jamie Joachim, Abigail Deshong, Kevern Dasilva and Eltonique Leonard proudly swam themselves to a bronze medal.
Coach Kyle Dougan said he was overwhelmed with the success of his team and congratulated every swimmer who participated.
St Vincent and the Grenadines will next be competing in the 2017 OECS Swimming Championships, to be held in St Lucia November 10 to 12.