National sprinter Richard “Torpedo” Thompson put aside his rigorous training for the 2016 Rio Olympics yesterday to marry his sweetheart of ten years, Monique Cabral, and begin the new year with his biggest victory following a wedding ceremony at All Saints Anglican Church, Marli Street, Port-of-Spain.
Thompson, 30, and Cabral, 29, have a two-year-old son, Rhys, and their paths seemed destined to cross. Both sprinters attended the famed Louisiana State University (LSU) in 2005 and were track stars. “Torpedo” set the 60-metres (m) NCAA Indoor record in 2008 and was later named NCAA Men’s Outdoor Track Athlete of the Year Award and won the SE C Men’s Outdoor Track Athlete of the Year award.
His 2008 got even better, claiming 100m and 4x100m silver medals at the Olympics in Beijing behind Jamaican Usain Bolt. He won silver in the 4x100m at the London Olympics in 2012, again behind the Jamaicans.
“Torpedo” boasts three Olympic silver medals and a World Championship silver medal while Cabral was an excellent 100m, 200m and relay runner and most recently was on the 4x100m squad at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. She graduated in 2009 with a degree in elementary education.
Yesterday, national athletes and other sporting personalities came out in their numbers to extend best wishes to the duo on their new journey together.
Present yesterday were Thompson’s new coach and TT’s most decorated athlete Ato Boldon as well as national sprint champion Keston Bledman, young sprint sensation Khalifa St Fort and local sprint queen Kelly-Ann Baptiste to name a few.
Thompson and Cabral have gone through tough times together, surviving an accident on January 1, 2009 as they left for home after bringing in the New Year at a party in Club 51 Degrees.
The duo sustained minor injuries with Thompson going on to continue his stellar career for this country.