CARIFTA open water team named

Supplementing the swim team, the Bahamas Aquatics Federation (BAF) has ratified an 11-member team to represent The Bahamas at the 2020 CARIFTA Open Water Championships at Carlisle Bay, Barbados, set for Wednesday, April 15.

Swimming in the girls division will be Grace Farrington (14-15), Seannia Norville-Smith (14-15), Mia Sastre (14-15), Kaliyah Albury (16-18), Giovanna Eneas (16-18) and Salene Gibson (16-18).

The boys division will be represented by Tristin Ferguson (14-15), Marvin Johnson (14-15), Hodari Prince (14-15), Ocean Smith (16-18) and Mark-Anthony Thompson (16-18).

Andy Loveitt will be the head coach of the open water team for another year.

The team will feature six newcomers – Farrington, Norville-Smith, Gibson, Ferguson, Prince and Johnson.

However, this will not be the first time they will be representing The Bahamas in Barbados as they swam for The Bahamas in the pool portion of CARIFTA last year.

“It was not difficult picking the team,” Loveitt said. “There is a selection criteria in place and the swimmers who met that criteria were automatically selected. Nine swimmers met the criteria. Marvin Johnson and Tristin Ferguson swam one open water and were added to the team as there were spaces available and they were already on the swim team.”

Last year, the team had two fourth place, two sixth place, two seventh and two eighth place finishes across all age groups.

Loveitt said the team will be preparing by swimming alongside the pool team as they look to increase their endurance over the next few weeks.

He has no expectations but hopes to have all the swimmers perform at their best.

“There are no expectations apart from getting every swimmer swimming to their maximum potential and give 110 percent effort. You cannot ask for more than that and then let’s see how they compare with the other countries,” Loveitt said.

The team has a great chance of placing in the top three overall in open water this year after experiencing an improvement from last year’s competition.

In addition to this team being named, the BAF ratified a 36-member CARIFTA swimming team. They are the defending champions after winning three straight championships and five of the last six CARIFTA swimming titles.

Competition for the swim team will be held April 11 to 14 at the Barbados Aquatic Center in Wildey, Barbados.

Both teams are set to depart on April 9 and return to The Bahamas on April 15.

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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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