Zarek Wilson of Blue Dolphins Swim Club made his intentions clear in his first swim at the Annual ASATT Invitational Swim Meet, where he established a new 9 – 10 national record in the 50m and 100m backstroke yesterday at the National Aquatic Centre in Balmain Couva
Wilson, who has continued where he left off at the National Open Short Course Championships a month ago, erased his own 50m back long course record of 34.02, winning gold in 33.42 seconds. Nikoli Blackman of Marlins won silver in 34.34, while Josiah Changar of Sea Hawks won bronze (34.94).
He went on to swim a time trial at the end of the meet in the 100m backstroke to establish a new mark of 1:15.26 to erase the 1992 record of Matthew Houllier of 1:16.05.
Wilson set national records in the 50 free, 100 free and 200 IM at the short course meet.
The new 50m backstroke record also earns Wilson an 11-12 age group qualifying time for 2017 CARIFTA in Bahamas, and CCCAN in Trinidad and Tobago.
Graham Chatoor of Marlins became the first CARIFTA and CCCAN qualifier on the night when he won the 1500 free in 17:17.62.
The 50m backstroke event saw many qualifiers for 2017 CARIFTA and CCCAN. Tidal Wave’s Gabrielle Vickles (34.19) and Neishelah Caseman (34.49) won gold and silver respectively 11-12 CCCAN and CARIFTA qualifying marks. Naima Hazell of Lightning Aquatics St. Lucia was third (36.57). T & T national Regan Allen who is based in the US, won the 11-12 female in 33.09 seconds. Allen progresses to 13-14 next year and this swim qualifies her for CCCAN and CARIFTA. Malik Nelson of Atlantis won the 11-12 male race in a 13-14 CARIFTA qualifying time of 30.70. Jahmia Harley of Tidal Wave joined the list of qualifiers winning the 13-14 50 back female in 32.19. Atlantis team mates Jada Chai (33.10) and Deshor Edwards (33.99) placed 2nd and 3rd respectively in a 15-17 qualifying time.
Sea Hawks Aqeel Joseph won gold in the 13-14 male version of the 50m back in a CARIFTA and CCCAN qualifying time of 29.86. Kristin Julien (30.16) of Areios Aquatechs and Ariel Cape (30.82) of Blue Dolphins placed first and second in the 15 & over female race, surpassing the 18 & over qualifying time for CCCAN. Ornella Walker (31.35) of Tobago YMCA won bronze in a 15-17 CARIFTA and CCCAN time, while fourth and fifth place finishers Amira Pilgrim (UTT) and Marissa Dickson (Atlantis) also made 15-17 qualifying times.
The 15 & over race was an exciting race where 0.04 seconds separated 1st, 2nd and 3rd. In the end Justin Samlalsingh (27.92) of Areios Aquatechs won gold, with Jeron Thompson of Atlantis (27.94) winning silver. Both established CARIFTA and CCCAN times for the 15-17 age group. Christian Awah (27.96) of Blue Dolphins and Bradley Thomas (28.29) of Tobago YMCA both established 18 & Over CCCAN marks.
The 200m butterfly were no different with more qualifying times being achieved. 11-12 female Allen again scored gold again in a CARIFTA and CCCAN 13-14 qualifying time of 2:36.48. Vrisnelit Faure of Areios won the 13-14 race in a 15-17 qualifying time of 2:32.43. Silver and Bronze winners both remain in the 13-14 age group next year and both made qualifying times. Harley (2:35.11) of Tidal Wave and Jada Chatoor (2:35.31) of Marlins put in their 2017 national team bids.
Jenebi Benoit of Grenfins Grenada won the 11-12 male race in 2:37.30. Nelson (2:38.88) won silver, with Riquelio Joseph of Sea Hawks winning bronze in a 11-12 CARIFTA time of 2:45.47. Fourth placed Johann Matthew-Matamoro also made a 11-12 time. The 13-14 male race was won by Jordanne Payne of Y Speedos Jamaica (2:19.97). In his second placed finish, Joseph of Sea Hawks achieved a CARIFTA time (2:25.07).
Kael Yorke won the 15-17 200 fly in a CARIFTA and CCCAN time of 2:11.30. Yorke also achieved a time in his 5th place 50 back finish. Blue Dolphins Mark Anthony Beckles also achieved a qualifying time finishing 2nd in 2:14.85. Chatoor (J) returned to establish a CARIFTA and CCCAN qualifying time of 5:25.66 in the 400m individual medley.
Other winners on the night were Soraya Simmons of Dorado Speed Swim Club of Guyana (15 & over female 1500 free), Amy Grant (Unattached) and Gabriel Bynoe (Tidal Wave) in the 13-14 female and male 1500 free, Shauna Nelson (Tidal Wave) and Zachary Anthony ( Marlins) in 8 & under female and male 50m back, and Rebecca Lashley of Pirates Barbados in the 400 IM.
Competition resumes today at 6:00pm, preceded by an opening ceremony and parade of teams, with with two sessions each on Saturday and Sundaystarting at 9:00am and 5:00pm.