British Virgin Islands athletes wrote their names in history after tallying a total of seven medals at the recently-concluded CARIFTA Games in the Cayman Islands during the Easter weekend.
Topping the list of those BVI athletes was Jaleel Croal who won the only gold medal for the territory in the Under 17 Boys 200-metre final.
The sprinter is now first ever male local athlete to win gold for the territory at the CARIFTA Games in that event.
Croal ran out of the unfavoured Lane 8 to clock a personal best of 21.43 seconds ahead of Jamaican favourites Christopher Scott and Richard Nelson who finished second and third, respectively.
The BVI athlete had created history earlier in the Games when he finished third in the Under 17 Boys 100-metre sprint with a time of 10.80 seconds. This made Croal the first local male athlete to win a medal in the event in more than 43 years.
Excellent performances overall
President of the BVI Athletics Association (BVIAA) Steve Augustine expressed pride not only with Croal’s performance but with the BVI’s overall performance at this year’s staging of the Games.
“The athletes all came out with a wall of confidence walking on to the field … We have a very knowledgeable coaching staff based back home in the BVI who are doing a wonderful job with kids and I think the results [were shown] here at the CARIFTA Games,” Augustine said.
“This is not just another track meet, this is the prestigious CARIFTA Games where everyone comes here looking to strike gold and we came here and we did it in many events … We’re quite happy with the results we have at this year’s CARIFTA Games,” the BVIAA president added.
The BVI Carifta team ended the Games with one gold, three silvers and three bronze medals.
The other local medallists include strongman Djimon Gumbs who made a throw of 54.76 metres in the finals of the Under 20 men’s Discuss to place third.
Female sprinter Beyonce Defreitas finished third in the Under 20 women’s 200 metre event in 23.79 seconds, Khybah Dawson leapt to a distance of 6.83 metres to claim silver in the men’s Under 17 Long Jump, quarter-miler Akriss Eristee claimed silver in the Under-17 women’s 400 metre race with a time of 54.10 seconds, and the quartet of Eristee, Kaelyaah Liburd, Ariyah Smith and Jahtivya Williams claimed silver in the women’s 4×400 metre relay in a time of 3:44.89 seconds.
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