On Day 2 of the 2017 NCAA Division I Championships being held in Indiana the CARIFTA region sprint force was on show with top swimmers from Aruba, Jamaica, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago in action. It would be Dylan Carter of Trinidad and Tobago who would become the fastest ever swimmer CARIFTA Region to compete at the collegiate level in the 50 yard freestyle.
Heading to Indiana Carter who represents the University of Southern California Trojans was tied with legendary Olympian George Bovell III as the fastest sprinters from the twin island republic at the collegiate level with identical times of 19.32. Dylan recorded that time at the Texas Invite in Dec 2016.
On Thursday March 23 during the heats of the 200 yard freestyle relay Dylan led off the Trojans with a split of 19.08 (split time 9.31). The team was unfortunately disqualified.
In the heats of the individual 50 yard freestyle he would subsequently swim faster. Carter would clock a CARIFTA region best of 19.04 (split time 9.18).This would allow the 6’3 junior to make his first ever NCAA Championship final .It also bettered his best showing and time at the meet.His previous best was 19th in 2014 in a time of 19.41 (split time 9.39). He would maintain that position in the night posting a time of 19.08 (split 9.21). The previous best time from the region was 19.30 by Shaune Fraser of the Cayman Islands who recorded 19.30 while representing the University of Florida in 2009. Dylan’s swim also marked the first Championship finalist in the event for the Trojans since 2013 when Vlad Morozov won the event. Carter is now the 2nd fastest swimmer of all time at USC.
In the 400 yard medley relay Championship final the Trojan team of Ralf Tribuntsov backstroke 44.76, Carsten Vissering breaststroke 51.23, Carter butterfly 44.81 and Santo Condorelli freestyle placed 4th in a new school record of 3:02.20. That crushed the old mark of 3:04.51 set at the PAC -12 championships earlier this month. Carter’s butterfly split then was 45.23. It is the best placing for the Trojans at Championships since 2013 when they placed 4th in 3:04.98.
Jamaica’s Alia Atkinson, the standard bearer for regional swimming continued to enhance the reputation of Caribbean swimming by winning the Bronze medal tonight in the 100 individual medley. The 13th World Short Swimming Championships in Windsor Canada would prove to be the venue for her first medal in the event and her 6th overall.
The road to her medal success can be likened to Alia’s determination to excel in her sport as seen by the results from her first time of competition to this medal winning moment.
In the race itself it was Atkinson who had a fantastic last 50 metres of 30.44 to move from 7th to earn Bronze in a time of 58.04.She was not far off her national record time of 57.84 set in August this year. The Gold was won by Katinka Hozzsu in 57.24 and the Silver by Australian Emily Seebohm in 57.97.
Atkinson joins George Bovell III as the only medallist from the region in the event .George won Bronze at the 2012 Championships in a time of 51.66.
Jamaica’s Alia Atkinson and Trinidad and Tobago’s Dylan Carter had historic swims last night on Day 2 of the 13th World Short Course Swimming Championships in Windsor Canada in the 50 metre breaststroke and 200 metre freestyle respectively.
Alia Atkinson won Silver in the 50 metre breastroke in 29.11. The gold was won by Lilly King in a time of 28.92. World Record Holder Atkinson extends her record as the most decorated swimmer from Jamaica and the English Speaking Caribbean at the World Short Course Swimming Championships. Her overall medal count stands at One Gold and Four Silver medals. With her historic swim in the event she becomes the only swimmer ever to win THREE consecutive medals in the event. She, at this point is the only swimmer from Jamaica to medal at the World Short Course Swimming Championships.
Carter placed 4th in the Championship final of the 200 metre freestyle in a time of 1:42.48 (splits 49.97 and 52.51). That bettered his national record of 1:42.90 set in the morning heats. With that performance Dylan has become the best placed English speaking Caribbean swimmer ever at these World Championships in the event. Carter bettered the previous national best placing and time of 14th when George Bovell III clocked 1:47.62 at the 2002 Championships in Moscow. The previous best English speaking CARIFTA region placing in the event was the Cayman Islands Shaune Fraser’s 8th spot at the 2010 Championships .At those Championships Fraser clocked 1:43.91 in the final. In the heats he had set a mark of 1:42.8.
Through the efforts of these standard bearers the quality of swimming from the region is lifted and our reputation enhanced.
The CARIFTA region will have two representatives in Jamaica’s Alia Atkinson and Trinidad and Tobago’s Dylan Carter Championship finals on Day 2 of the 13th World Short Course Swimming Championships in Windsor Canada today Wednesday Dec 7, 2016. Alia will have the first chance to win Gold when she competes at approximately 7:11pm Jamaica time in the 50 metre breaststroke final. She will be followed immediately by Carter who will contest the final of the 200 metre freestyle at 7:23 Jamaica time.
For the 5 time World Championships veteran Atkinson this will be her 4th consecutive 50 metre breaststroke Championship Final .
50 metre breaststroke
50 metre breaststroke
50 metre breaststroke
After medalling in the last 2 Championships she will be looking to be atop the podium tonight. She entered the meet with # 1 ranking and World Record of 28.64. Throughout qualifying she has topped the field with heats and semi-finals times of 29.48 and 29.09 respectively. She will be in Lane 4 in the final. She will be flanked by Americans Lilly King and Molly Hannis who qualified with times 29.17 and 29.88.
Dylan Carter came to these World Championships from a very impressive Texas Invitational and in great form. The coaching decision to scratch from the 100 metre backstroke and focus on the 200 metre freestyle today proved a very wise one as he topped the qualifiers heading into the final with national record breaking performance of 1:42.90.
splits by 50
That broke the record of 1:44.81 that George Bovell III recorded when leading off the Auburn University to 4th place at the 2004 NCAA finals when meet was contested in short course metres. It is also the 5th fastest performance of the year. He was the only swimmer to break 1:43 seconds this morning. He will swim from Lane 4 tonight he will be flanked by South African Myles Brown and Russian Aleksandr Krasnykh. He has already made history for his nation by becoming the first Championship final qualifier in the event.
Tonight promises to be a very special night not only Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago but the wider Caribbean.
The 6th day of swimming saw Mehdy Metella (French Guiana/France) becoming the fastest swimmer from the CARIFTA region with his heats swim in the 100 metre butterfly .Going out in 24.10 he came home in 27.61 to record a time of 51.71. That bettered the Gold medal winning time of 53.00 by Suriname’s Anthony Nesty done in 1988 Seoul Games. He would be just off that time in the semi-finals when he clocked 51.73 split time 24.17 to qualify for the final. He became the first swimmer to qualify for the 100 metre butterfly since Nesty accomplished that feat at the 1992 Barcelona Games.
Renzo Tjon A Joe became the fastest swimmer from Suriname ever at the Olympics when he clocked a national record of 22.23. With his placing of 21st he also became the highest placed swimmer from his country in the event. Renzo was just 0 .13 of a second outside of qualification for the semi finals. The previous Olympic best was 23.74 by Enrico Linscheer who placed 33rd at the 199s Barcelona Games. Enrico was the youngest athlete for Suriname at the Games being 17 years 283 days.
George Bovell III of Trinidad and Tobago was 27th with a time of 22.30. George remains the fastest swimmer ever from the region in the race with times of 21.77 done at the London 2012 Games and the 2008 Beijing Games.
Jordan Augier became the fastest swimmer from St Lucia with his time of 23.28. His placing of 45th also makes him the highest placed male swimmer from that nation. The fastest time and ranking was held by Jamie Peterkin who was 59th in the 2000 Sydney Games with a time of 25.33.
In the 800 metre freestyle Joanna Evans became the 3rd fastest swimmer from the region at the Olympics. Evans stopped the clock in 8:42.93 (split time 4:15.93) to finish 23rd overall. The overall record is held by Coralie Balmy with her time of 8:27.15 done at the London 2012 Games. The fastest English speaking time is held by Jamaica’s Janelle Atkinson who clocked 8:34.51 at the Sydney Games.
Nikolas Sylvester became the fastest swimmer from St Vincent and the Grenadines when he clocked 25.64 for 61st in the 50 metre freestyle . He bettered the time of 26.27 done by Tolga Akcayli at the 2012 Games.
Guyana’s Hannibal Gaskin clocked 58.57 in the 100 metre butterfly for 42nd place. That tied the best placing at the Olympics by a Guyanese swimmer at the Games. In 2012 Britney Van Lange placed 42nd in the 100 metre freestyle.
The 4th day of swimming action saw Trinidad and Tobago’s Dylan Carter set a new national record in the 100 metre freestyle of 48.80. Swimming in heat 4 Carter had a reaction time of 0.64. He covered the first 50 metres in 23.49 before finishing with a second 50 of 25.31 to take the heat win. That performance placed at 23rd overall and bettered the national record of George Bovell III who had set the national standard of 48.83 at the 2008 Beijing Games. Dylan is also now the 2nd fastest swimmer from the English speaking CARIFTA region at the Olympic Games. The fastest time registered at the Games is 48.54 by the Cayman Islands Brett Fraser at the 2012 London Games. The fastest performance from the CARIFTA region was recorded by Mehdy Metella (French Guiana/France) with his opening leg split of 48.08 of the 400 metre freestyle relay final.
Lorys Bourelly (Martinique/France) had a 3rd leg split of 1:48.62 to help France to 14th overall. The team’s final overall time was 7:13.71.
Day 3 of the 2016 Rio Olympics saw the CARIFTA region represented in another final. It was the turn of Jamaica’s Alia Atkinson in the 100 metre breaststroke. The final would be Atkinson’s second consecutive final after making the top 8 at the London 2012 Games. Atkinson finished 8th in the final with a time of 1:08.10.With her qualification for the final she joins a select group of swimmers to make two or more individual Olympic finals. Malia Metella (French Guiana/France) 50 and 100 metre freestyle 2004 Games in Athens, Coralie Balmy (Martinique/France) 400 metre freestyle Beijing 2008, London 2012 and Rio 2016, Anthony Nesty (Suriname) 100 metre butterfly 1 Seoul 1988, Barcelona 1992 and 200 metre butterfly Seoul 1988, George Bovell III Trinidad and Tobago 200 metre individual medley Athens 2004 and 50 metre freestyle London 2012. Atkinson is the first swimmer from Jamaica to make two Olympic finals for Jamaica.
In the 200 metre freestyle Balmy and Joanna Evans of The Bahamas raced to the top of the standings for the best ever female Olympic performances from the CARIFTA region. Balmy had splits of 58.37 and 1:00.46 for a total time of 1:58.83. She would place 23rd overall. That is the best ever Olympic performance ever by a woman from the CARIFTA region.
Evans had splits of 59.23 and 1:02.04 for a total time 2:01.27 for a final place of 36th .That performance bettered her national record of 2:01.62. That swim moved to her to the 2nd fastest of all time in the CARIFTA region and the fastest English speaking woman. She beat the English speaking CARIFTA region best of 2:04.06 set Jamaica’s Janelle Atkinson at the Sydney 2000 Games.