THE Seajays Swim Club did it again when they emerged champions of the 2019 National Short Course/ Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Capri Sun Trials held at the Rodney Heights Aquatic Centre. Winning with a total of 1202 points, they were 157 points clear of the second place team Sharks.
Close to 175 swimmers representing seven clubs took part in the two day meet which was organised by the Seajays Swim Club in collaboration with the Saint Lucia Aquatic Federation and sanctioned by world governing body, FINA.
Among highlights of the meet were the two age group and one national record set by two of the island’s leading swimmers and a number of swimmers in the Under 6 age group showcasing their skills in the pool, some for the first time at the RHAC.
Tristan Dorville clipped the 11 – 12 boys 100 metres fly in a time of 1 minute 05. 09 seconds. The record was previously secured by D’ Andre Blanchard (1 minute 05.90 seconds) at the 28th edition of the OECS Swimming Championship held in Saint Lucia in 2018.
Jayhan Odlum – Smith competiting in the 15 -17 boys category broke his own record by setting a national/age group record in the 100 metres fly in a time of 57.03 seconds. The old record was 57.22 seconds set at the 20th edition of the RHAC Invitational Swim Meet held in Saint Lucia in August 2019.
Defending champions (2018) Sharks had to settle for second place with 1045 points (girls 565/ boys 480), Lightning Aquatics Swim Club third with 707 points (girls 382/ boys 325), Southern Flying Fish fourth with 257 points (girls 202/ boys 55), RR Aquatic Swim Club fifth with 192 points (girls 133/ boys 59), RHAC Swim Club sixth with 79 points (boys 79), Sail Fin Swim Club seventh with 61 points (girls 61) and Unattached (eight swimmers) with 50 points (boys 50).
Making a return to competitive swimming at the RHAC after eight years was former national swimmer Siona Huxley, not in her explosive style like previous years, but good enough to win the 18 and over individual award. She won the 50 metre free style in a time of 31.76 seconds, 200 metres Individual Medley (IM) in a time of 3 minutes 00.26 seconds, 400 metres free style in 5 minutes 43.40 seconds.
Meanwhile, the following awards were presented to age group individual winners: 8 and under girls (1st) Helen Kabiye, Sharks 54 pts, (2) Zaina Brathwaite, Sharks 52 pts, (3rd) Marise Kayla-Inglis, RR Aquatic 36 pts. Boys 8 and under (1st) James Sylvester, Seajays 54 pts, Aaron Charles, Lightning Aquatic 45 pts, Noah Dorville, Seajays 41 pts.
Girls 9-10, (1st) Damari Maxwell, Seajays 60 pts, (2nd) Alexandra Bristol, Lightning Aquatics 57 pts, (3rd) Jaida Henry, Seajays 48 pts. Boys 9-10, (1st) Leo Gilmore, Sharks 79 pts, (2nd) Thaeden Antoine, Sharks 55 pts, (3rd) Omar Gabriel, Seajays 42 pts.
Girls 11-12, (1st) Jasmine Steide, Sharks 71 pts, (2nd) Caitlin Polius, Seajays 69 pts, (3rd) Maliyah Henry, Southern Flying Fish 49 pts. Boys 11-12, (1st) Tristan Dorville, Seajays 79 pts, (2nd) Karic Charles, Lightning Aquatics 62 pts, Ethan Hazell, Lightning Aquatics 55 pts.
Girls 13-14, tie for 1st place, Niama Hazell/ Naekeisha Louis, Lightning Aquatics 73 pts, (2nd) Courtney Paul, Lightning Aquatics 57 pts, (3rd) Tammy Pultie, Sharks. It was a clean sweep for Seajays in the Boys 13-14, (1st) D’Andre Blanchard, 72 pts, (2nd) Shaquil Flavius, 61 pts, Nathan Vigier, 44 pts.
Girls 15-17, (1st) Shalini Joseph, Sail Fin 61 pts, (2nd) Sade Joseph, Seajays 57 pts, (3rd) Joesha Daniel, Lightning Aquatics 31 pts. Boys 15-17, (1st) JayhanOdlum – Smith, Seajays 72 pts, (2nd) Allandre Cross, Sharks 65 pts, (3rd) Jeannot Walters, Unattached 49 pts.
Girls 18 and over, (1st) Siona Huxley, Sharks 72 pts, (2nd) Evelyn Day, Sharks 42 pts. Boys 18 and over, (1st) Nicholas McLennon, Seajays 72 pts, (2nd) Shamar Weeks, Sharks 23 pts.
Meanwhile, special mention must be made the following swimmers who made it hard for fans from various swim clubs to contain themselves: Zane Williams age 4, Gia Arthurs, Sapphire Parks age 5, JeshawnYarde age 6, Jamari Joseph age 8 (RR Aquatic), KhiaraHippolyte age 5, Aniyah George, Justin James age 6, Maxime Larrier age 7, Zoe Daley age 10 (Seajays), Tre Thresine age 6, (RHAC), EqraNajmah-Melchoir age 5, IsableAnius age 6, Kaitlyn Holder, David Jn Pierre age 9 (Southern Flying Fish), Amara Reece age 7, Jahson Felix, Sebastien Ambler age 9,Yannys Christophe age 10 (Lightning Aquatics), Daniel Du Boulay age 4, Alex Alfred, Adam Du Boulay age 7, Maravilla John age 8 (Sharks).
Robert Blanchard, President of Seajays Swim Club, said: “This Meet could not be possible without the sterling financial contribution of Capri-Sun. Capri-Sun demonstrates good corporate responsibility by the investment it has made and continues to make to ensure that young swimmers convert their daily hard work and commitment to their sport, into successes during competition. Seajays is grateful for this healthy collaboration and looks forward to celebrating 10 years with Capri-Sun in 2020”.
Blanchard took some time to thank the following sponsors – CIBC/FCIB, NLA, Earle Companies, Crystal Clear, JJ’s Paradise and Bel Jou for the investment they have made in the Club and towards the success of the 2019 edition of the swim championship.
He also thanked the many volunteers who contributed to ensure that the swimmers remained happy and focused on their events. The meet manager/ referee, the announcer, starters, timers, marshals, computer room managers, the medical team, the Red Cross, the DJ who kept the patrons well entertained, the fundraising committee, the clubs, the coaches, parents and guardians, and the management and staff of the RHAC for all they do on a daily basis to facilitate swimmers and the growth of swimming in Saint Lucia.