Elinah Phillip of the British Virgin Islands at her last competitive outing at the 2021 Michael Lohberg Invitational showed that she is in exquisite sprint form. This was verified by her national record showing in the 50 metre freestyle which saw her winning Gold.
Heading to the competition which was held from June 11-13 in Coral Springs Florida she boasted a personal record of 26.08.She had set that mark in 2020 winning the event at the Hawkeye Time trial in Iowa City. In the Sunshine State she broke the 26 barrier in the heats to clock a time of 25.98. The magical mark of 26 seconds has been beaten by very few CARIFTA region Ladies . Phillip changed gears in the final to hit another level of speed when she won in 25.82. How fast is that time in the context of the CARIFTA region? She becomes the 11th woman to break that barrier and is the 9th fastest performer of all time.
CARIFTA REGION ALL TIME BEST PERFORMERS IN THE 50 METRE FREESTYLE UNDER 26 SECONDS
|Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace||The Bahamas||24.31||2014||1|
|Malia Metella||French Guiana/ France||24.58||2009||2|
|Cherelle Thompson||Trinidad and Tobago||25.32||2020||3|
|Ariel Weech||The Bahamas||25.72||2014||7|
|Elinah Phillip||British Virgin Islands||25.82||2021||9|
|Siobhan Cropper||Trinidad and Tobago||25.89||1997||10|
|Sharntelle McLean||Trinidad and Tobago||25.92||2009||11|
There would be more national record success at the meet . She lowered her 2013 200 metre freestyle record from 2:20.54 to 2:15.27 (split time 1:04.50). That placed her 12th overall in the 15 and over age group. The 100 metre freestyle saw her finishing fourth in a time of 59.13 (split time 28.07). In less than a month she has lowered the 50, 100 and 200 metre freestyle records. She had set the 100 metre record at 58.63 at the SOFLO Last Chance Olympic qualifier in late May.
Draftingthecaribbean spoke to Elinah and got her analysis of her 50 metre freestyle performance
” I am overjoyed with my performance in the 50m freestyle! Breaking 26 seconds has been a goal of mine for a long time and something I’ve come close to several times over the years so to finally do it and feel great doing it is something special to me. It requires a high level of fitness and I’m so happy to be in a place where I can consistently build that, this was actually the goal for the end of the summer and doing it this early means I can only go faster”.
Elinah, who now represents Florida International University and won the Silver at their Conference meet in the 50 yard freestyle also spoke about the 200 metre freestyle record and what [phase of training she is now in
“The 200m freestyle isn’t one of my main event but it’s a good one for me to explore and potentially get back into since I have a strong freestyle foundation. I enjoyed it and the national record is a bonus but I know I have a lot of room for growth when it comes to this event :). Overall, I am thrilled with how this weekend went as we are in a training block so I wasn’t rested or tapered for this competition so swimming best times at this point feels amazing. onwards and upwards from here”.
Phillip also spoke about her current training regimen and and international meets she will be targeting from now until December 2022
“Currently during the summer I swim Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday mornings (5:45-7:45am). Monday, Thursday and Friday afternoons. Then I lift on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday afternoons.In terms of competition, I have the Olympic Games on the horizon. After that, In the fall I will have the Pan Am Jr Game, the FINA SC Worlds, Commonwealth Games in the summer then the FINA LC Worlds and the CAC Games”.
The 21 year old Olympian who competed at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the 50 metre freestyle is trailblazer for aquatics as she became the first swimmer to compete at the highest level for her nation. She will be aiming to an even higher position especially with this increased sprint speed.