By BRENT STUBBS
Senior Sports Reporter
THE Bahamas is well on its way to repeating as the champions of the CARIFTA Swimming Championships.
As the third day concluded in Bridgetown, Barbados, the Bahamas pushed its medal total to 55 with 28 gold, 13 silver and 14 bronze, ahead of Jamaica, who trail with 15 gold, 20 silver and 11 bronze for 46 medals.
But unlike CARIFTA track and field that is decided on medals, the swimming competition is determined by points. And the Bahamas leads in that category with 667.50, 100 points ahead of Jamaica, who follow with 565.
The swimming competition will wrap up tonight, followed by the open water swim. At the end of day two on Sunday, the Bahamas had accumulated a total of 39 medals, inclusive of 18 gold, 11 silver and 10 bronze and 457 points to control the leaderboard of the 22 participating countries.
After the first day of competition, Team Bahamas had already collected nine gold, five silver and seven bronze for a total of 21 medals and compiled 233 points to lead the field.
Individual medal winners from last night were not available up to press time, but here’s a look at what they did over the first two days of competition.
Team Bahamas got a pair of 1-2 finishes in the boys’ 11-12 and 15-17 divisions to help booster their performances as they head towards a repeat overall performance.
In the boys’ 15-17 division, Davante Carey touched the wall in 59.83 seconds for the gold, surpassing the Pan Am B qualifying time of 59.99, while Lamar Taylor got the silver in 1:00.17.
Carey joined Luke-Kennedy Thompson, Izaak Bastian and Ian Pinder, who all surpassed the B qualifying time for the Pan Am Games as well in their respective events on Saturday.
The Pan Am Games is scheduled for July 28 to August 11 in Lima, Peru.
Marvin Forbes, meanwhile, continued his dominant performance in the boys’ 11-12 division. He won the 200m freestyle in 2:07.92 with Tristin Ferguson trailing in 2:10.18 for second place. Johnson also won the gold in the 50m butterfly in 28.26 and the 100m backstroke in 1:00.44.
Another outstanding performance came in the boys’ 15-17 50m butterfly where Izaak Bastian took the gold in 25.10, followed by Davante Carey in 25.88 for the silver.
Also standing on top of the podium was Luke-Kennedy Thompson in the boys’ 15-17 400m IM in 4:44.68.
Out of the six 4 x 100m medley relays, Team Bahamas picked up more medals, including two gold.
The best showing came from the boys’ 15-17 division where the team of Davante Carey, Izaak Bastian, Ian Pinder and Kevon Lockhart prevailed in a CARIFTA record time of 3:54.32. Their feat came after the team of Marvin Johnson, Ethan Pinder, Asher Johnson and Tristin Ferguson clocked 4:46.54 for the other gold. Also, the team of Keianna Moss, Zaylie-Elizabeth Thompson, Rachel Lundy and Delaney Mizell got the silver in the girls’ 13-14 race in 4:39.15.
And the boys’ 13-14 team of Ishan Roy, Erald Thompson II, Nigel Forbes and Taye Fountain struck for another silver in 4:16.65.
Not only did they win, but Luke-Kennedy Thompson, Izaak Bastian and Ian Pinder all surpassed the B qualifying time for the Pan Am Games as well in their respective events.
Thompson, taking the boys’ 15-17 1,500m freestyle in 16:37.95, went under the Pan Am B qualifying time of 16:39.97. The A standard is 15:43.36. His brother Mark-Anthony Thompson got the bronze in 17:09.40.
In winning the boys’ 15-17 200m breastroke in 2:18.03, Izaak Bastian also did the Pan Am B cut of 2:25.79. The A standard is 2:17.52. Luke-Kennedy Thompson got the bronze in 2:28.91.
And in the boys’ 15-17 100m butterfly, Ian Pinder’s winning time of 56.80 was good enough for him to surpass the Pan Am B qualifying time of 56.95. The A standard is 53.73.
Davante Carey picked up the bronze in 57.24, but he also won the 50m backstroke in 26.66 with Lamar Taylor getting the silver in 27.41.
Keianna Moss got a gold as well in the girls’ 13-14 50m backstroke in 31.31 and Marvin Johnson came through with another in the boys’ 11-12 100m butterfly in 1:03.65, while Amauri Bonamy got the bronze in 32.11.
Other silver medallists were Zaylie-Elizabeth Thompson in the girls’ 13-14 200m breaststroke in 2:48.15; Erald Thompson II in the boys’ 12-14 200m breaststroke in 2:30.39 and Nigel Forbes in the boys 13-14 100m butterfly in 59.45.
Forbes also got a bronze in the boys’ 12-14 200m breaststroke in 2:32.55.
Team Bahamas would also shine in the relays, winning a medal in all but the girls’ 15-17 4 x 100m freestyle as they closed out Saturday’s competition on a high note.
The boys’ 15-17 4 x 100m freestyle relay of Lamar Taylor, Kevon Lockhart, Davante Carey and Izaak Bastian eclipsed the CARIFTA record of 3:33.73 set by Trinidad & Tobago last year by establishing a new mark of 3:33.68.
And the boys’ 11-12 4 x 100m freestyle with the team of Tristin Ferguson, Amauri Bonamy, Ethan Pinder and Marvin Johnson captured the other gold in 4:08.13.
The girls’ 11-12 4 x 100m freestyle relay team of Giana Sands, Seannia Norville-Smith, Leylah Knowles and Mia Patton stood out as they got a silver in 4:27.50.
There were two bronze medals from the girls’ 13-14 4 x 100m freestyle relay team of Zaylie-Elizabeth Thompson, Devin Cuffy-Bethel, Angelique Gittens and Delaney Mizell (4:08.37) and the boys’ 4 x 100m freestyle relay team of Nigel Forbes, Erald Thompson II, Taye Fountain and Ishan Roy in 3:51.18.