2023 CAC Games: Mexico Leads Overall Medal Table Through Day 2


The 2023 Central American & Caribbean (CAC) Games kicked off over the weekend with the action taking place in San Salvador, El Salvador.

Over 5000 athletes competing across 36 sports have descended upon the country for the quadrennial event, with nations across Central America, the Caribbean, South America and beyond being represented.

The last edition of this multi-sport extravaganza took place in Colombia in 2018. The 2022 edition was slated for Panama but the country declined from being host during the 2020 pandemic, and it got postponed one year.

Saturday’s Events

Two Games Records bit the dust on the very first day of the swimming competition, one individually and one in a relay race.

Trinidad & Tobago Olympian Dylan Carter wasted no time putting his sprinting prowess on display, successfully defending his 100m freestyle CAC Games title.

The 27-year-0ld former USC Trojan posted a winning effort of 48.49, a time which represented the sole sub-49 second result of the field.

Mikel Schreuders of Aruba snagged silver in 49.17 while Mexico’s Jorge Iga bagged bronze in 49.38. Remarkably, the podium remained exactly the same as the 2018 CAC Games.

Splitting 23.11/25.38, Carter’s outing overtook his own meet record of 48.95 produced en route to victory 5 years ago in Colombia.

Carter has already been as quick as 48.28 this season, a time he posted in March at the Pro Swim to currently rank 21st in the world.

The relay Games Record was taken down by Mexico in the men’s 4x200m free relay.

The combination of Jose Cano (1:51.08), Hector Ruvalcaba (1:51.61), Andres Dupont (1:50.68) and Iga (1:49.57) collectively clocked a winning time of 7:22.94. That knocked over a second off of the previous Games record of 7:24.18 the winning squad from Venezuela put on the board at the last Games.

In this year’s race, Colombia captured the runner-up slot in a time of 7:58.52 while Venezuela also landed on the podium in a mark of 7:45.64.

On the women’s side from day 1, Tayde Sansores got it done for gold in the women’s 50m backstroke. The Mexican swimmer logged a podium-topping result of 28.59 as the only racer to get under the 29-second threshold.

Behind her was Bermuda’s Emma Harvey who touched in 29.01 while Dominican Republic’s Elizabeth Jimenez rounded out the top 3 in 29.44.

Colombia’s Stefania Gomez got to the wall first in the women’s 100m breast in 1:08.97, a new national record, to beat out Mexico’s Byanca Rodriguez. Rodriguez hit a time of 1:09.24 while Venezuela’s Mercedes Toledo brought home the bronze in 1:10.77.

Additional Day 1 Winners:

  • Centro Caribe Sports swimmer Erick Gordillo put up a solid effort of 1:58.41 to lead a trio of sub-2:00 swimmers in the men’s 200m fly. Puerto Rico’s Yeziel Morales picked up the silver in 1:59.05 while Hector Ruvalcaba of Mexico clinched bronze in 1:59.59.
  • Karen Durango of Colombia punched a result of 4:15.56 in the women’s 400m free, holding a comfortable advantage over runner-up Elisbet Gamez of Cuba. Gamez touched in 4:16.34 while Maria Yegres of Venezuela collected bronze in 4:18.19.

Sunday’s Events

Two additional Games Records went down on day two of the CAC Games, both on the men’s side.

It was Mexico’s Miguel De Lara who scored the 100m breast victory in a new meet mark of 1:00.23. Splitting 28.80/31.43, De Lara beat out Jorge Murillo’s (COL) previous CAC standard of 1:00.37 logged in 2018.

Teammate Andres Puente snagged the 1breast silver in 1:01.62 while Julie Horrego of Honduras got on the board in 1:02.14. Horrego is Honduras’ reigning record holder, owning a lifetime best of 1:01.18 from the 2021 Bahamian Championships.

Erick Gordillo doubled up on his 200m fly victory from night one with another win in the 200m IM. The CCS swimmer punched a time of 2:00.97 to scorch the previous Games Record just put up in the morning heats.

Colombia’s Omar Pinzon took the top seed in a new record of 2:03.58, a time which easily overtook his own previous CAC standard 2:07.07 from the 2014 edition of the Games.

Come the final, however, Gordillo’s 2:00.07 topped the podium, followed by Arubian Patrick Groters who touched in 2:01.29. Mexico’s Jose Martinez rounded out the top 3 in 2:01.76 while Pinzon settled for silver in 2:02.80.

The women’s 200m free saw Cuban swimmer Elisbet Gamez get it done for gold, clocking 1:59.52. Although her time was slower than the 1:58.55 she logged 5 years ago, her performance upgraded her result from silver to gold this time around.

Mexico’s Maria Mata secured 2free silver in 1:59.98, a new national record, while Cuba’s Andrea Becali also landed on the podium in a bronze medal-worthy 2:00.70.

The Mexican men’s 4x100m free relay concluded day 2’s events, with the combination of Jorge Iga (48.83) Diego Camacho (51.33), Jose Martinez (50.55) and Andrews Dupont (49.49) successfully defending their 2018 Games gold.

Their collective time of 3:20.20 was enough to hold off Venezuela who checked in at 3:21.87 for silver while Trinidad & Tobago earned bronze in 3:22.33, fueled by Carter’s 48.65 lead-off. TTO produced a new national record in the process.

Additional Day 2 Winners:

  • Mexico’s Miranda Grana took home the 100m back gold for the women, producing a time of 1:02.18. Teammate Athena Meneses made it a 1-2 punch, logging 1:02.62 for silver while Puerto Rico’s Kristen Romano bagged bronze in 1:02.68.
  • The women’s 1500m free saw Maria Yegres of Venezuela post a time of 16:58.21 for gold. Colombia’s Tifanny Murillo touched in 17:08.06 while Venezuela’s Paola Pere registered 17:23.11 for respective silver and bronze.
  • Colombia’s Juan Morales nabbed the men’s 1500m victory ahead of Jose Cano of Mexico who was right behind in 15:51.64. Puerto Rico’s Christian Bayo also landed on the podium in 15:51.64 for bronze in the contest.

Through two days of competition, Mexico leads the overall swimming medal table with a total of 14 pieces of hardware, including 6 golds, 5 silvers and 3 bronze medals.

Colombia is next with a total of 6 while the Centro Caribe Sports organization sits 3rd with 2 medals, both golds by Gordillo.

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About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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