Action gets underway for Team Bahamas

Team Bahamas got its competition underway at the inaugural Junior Pan American Games on Friday, with athletes competing in triathlon and swimming in Cali, Colombia.

There were four Bahamian swimmers in the pool last night, swimming in the ‘B’ finals of the 100 meters (m) freestyle, 100m backstroke and the 200m breaststroke at the Hernando Botero O’byrne Swimming Pools in Cali.

Up first on the night for The Bahamas was Lamar Taylor in the 100m free ‘B’ final. The 18-year-old swam his way to fourth place after he touched the wall in 51.64 seconds. He swam 51.67 seconds in the preliminaries.

William Russell won the ‘B’ final in the 200m breast when he swam a personal best of 2:24.80. He erased his previous personal best of 2:25.04, and finished ninth overall.

Russell won the ‘B’ final of the 100m breast on Friday night with a personal best time of 1:04.02. His splits were 30.49 seconds and 33.53 seconds. He swam 1:05.63 in the preliminaries.

Taylor and DaVante Carey were both in the pool for the ‘B’ final of the 100m back. Taylor finished second in that race when he recorded a time of 58.05 seconds after posting 58.97 seconds in the preliminaries. Carey placed fifth with a time of 58.66 seconds to improve his preliminaries time of 59.44 seconds. Overall, Taylor placed 10th while Carey placed 13th.

Earlier in the day, The Bahamas swam in the 4x100m medley relay. The team placed sixth with a time of 4:14.11.

Carey placed eighth in the 200m back ‘B’ final and 16th overall when he touched the wall in 2:14.03 on Saturday.

Rhanishka Gibbs was in action on Friday and placed 19th overall in the 100m breast with a time of 1:16.20. It was a personal best for her after her previous personal best of 1:18.09.

Rachel Lundy swam the 100m free yesterday morning and was able to clock a personal best of 1:00.86. She placed 29th overall. In the 200m free on Saturday, she posted a time of 2:13.55 to finish in 23rd.

Nigel Forbes made the ‘B’ final on Friday in the 200m butterfly where he posted a time of 2:17.67 to place 15th overall. In the 100m fly on Saturday, he swam 1:00.63 to place 27th overall.

Ralph Woods III competed in the triathlon on Friday at Lake Calima, just north of the city of Cali. He finished 28th overall, completing the swimming, cycling and running portions of the race. His overall time was 1:14.14. His time in the swimming portion was 11:21 in the 750m course. In the cycling portion of the race, which was 12.4 miles long, Woods pedaled his way to 37:14. He then got rid of the bicycle and clocked 22:43 on the 3.1 miles run.

Winning that event was Brazil’s Miguel Hidalgo with a time of 56:40.

Coaching Woods in Colombia was Cameron Roach. He and Woods are already back in The Bahamas.

“Our bags didn’t show up for the first two days,” Roach said. “We couldn’t properly train the first two days when we were up there, so we had a little bit of a disadvantage starting off, but he did perform well. It wasn’t his best, but it wasn’t his worst. In his swim, he got caught up in the beginning in a crowd and didn’t get out to the best start, but still had a decent swim.

“He had a very long transition from the swim to the bike and was uphill. He got on the bike with just one person and not the big group so those guys worked together a little bit. You have an advantage for the bigger group working together, so he wasn’t able to catch up to the pack. His bike was decent considering it was a very hilly terrain. It was a very, very hilly course. His run was a decent run, not his best, but he was able to finish the race in a decent time,” Roach said.

Roach said he was happy that Woods was able to meet and network with his peers so that they can share their training procedures and monitor each other’s progress.

Athletics and wrestling will get underway tomorrow and rowing will commence on Wednesday. The games end on December 5.

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Simba French

Simba joined The Nassau Guardian in 2012 as a technical producer for Guardian Radio 96.9 FM. He joined the Editorial Department as a sports reporter in 2018. Simba has covered a wide range of sports stories, including the 2018 CARIFTA in Nassau, Bahamas. Education: College of the Bahamas, BA Media Journalism

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