The second leg of the 13th annual Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee's Olympic Youth Camp kicked off today at Olympic House, 121 Abercromby street, Port of Spain. The inclement weather did not put a damper on the popular camp which will be running from the 20th - 25th July, 2015.

The theme this year ‘10Golds24', intends to encourage youngsters in the 11 to 14 age group to Strive for Excellence in their sporting discipline, but aims to encourage participants to remember that 'the most important thing is not to win but to take part'. Each day the athletes will be exposed to the Olympic Principles of Fair Play, Respect for Others, Joy of Effort, Pursuit of Excellence and Balance between Body, Will and Mind.

Guest Facilitators will present on Doping in Sports,  Critical Thinking, Media and Sports Psychology. Athletes from various sporting disciplines will also be given the opportunity to be leaders as they will be demonstrating and teaching key elements of their respective sport to their fellow campers in Hockey, Badminton, Football , Taekwando, Cycling, Triathlon, Archery and Volleyball.

The closing of the TTOC Youth Camp will be fashioned after the opening ceremony of an Olympic Games with the next Olympics to be held in the city of Rio De janeiro, Brazil from the 5th - 25th August, 2016.

Saturday 18thh, Toronto, Canada– Men’s sprint cyclist, three-time Pan American Junior Games Gold Medallist; and reigning Pan Am record holder Njisane Phillip, won Trinidad & Tobago it’s second medal of this year’s PanAm Games.  He claimed the silver medal in the finals of the Men’s Sprint losing to his training partner, Canadian Hugo Barrett.


Following the race Phillip said, “I think this was a great performance. I didn’t get the gold and I’m a bit disappointed but I think I executed my rides perfectly today. All that I had in my body I left it out there so I’m happy about that, and was able to better my bronze from 2011, so maybe in 4 years I can better the medal colour and break my record.”


As medallists Phillip will join George Bovell in receiving monetary bonuses from the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee for their performances. The medal bonus programme is an essential component of “TenGolds24,” the ten or more Olympic Gold medals by 2024 Athlete Welfare and Preparation Fund launched by the TTOC last year.  Phillip will receive US$2000.


Of the fund Phillip said, “It’s good because now it’s not just the medal on the line, or pride on the line. You have something else to go for and a lot of athletes will step up to the game.”


Phillip will compete in the Keirin tomorrow and hopes to add to Trinidad and Tobago’s medal count. He was 7th in that event in the London 2012 Olympics, where he captured the world’s attention finishing 4th in the Men’s Sprint. Following the games, he will turn his attention to Olympic qualification. Phillip said, “I have five races to get the points done. Pan Am Championships will also be points so I have a month and a half to get ready but I’ve been training with a new team and they’ve helped me tremendously so I think I’ll be ready. I’m just really happy my PanAm record holds and I can keep it for another four years.”


On the water sailor Kelly Ann Arrindell placed 5th in the Women’s Laser Radial Event. This is an impressive showing from a mostly self-trained young lady who just completed her A-levels, and has been taking part in events for practice and training.  The International Sailing Federation currently ranks Arrindell 206 in the world, and coming into the Pan Am Games her highest placing was 9th at the Cork OCR (Olympic Classes Regatta) in Kingston, Canada.


Her compatriot, national Laser Class champion Andrew Lewis finished 7th overall and has qualified for the Rio 2016 Olympic games. Lewis is the sixth “seaman” to represent Trinidad and Tobago in yachting/sailing in Olympic history, and was the only English speaking laser sailor from the Caribbean at the London 2012 Olympics.  Lewis eventually place 37th out of 40 competitors in London, and gained recognition following the games for a daring solo, wind-aid-only dinghy sail from Pigeon Point, Tobago, to Maracas Beach, Trinidad. He completed that journey in 11hours and 52 minutes.


Over in Beach Volleyball, the men’s duo of Williams and Whitfield won their 9th -12th round matchup against Nicaragua 2 sets to 1. The women’s duo of Davidson and Dyette will next play Guatemala on Sunday.


In field hockey, the men’s team lost their game against the United States 2-1. In football action, the men’s team suffered a disappointing loss to Paraguay 5-1, while the women warriors lost today’s must win match against Mexico 3-1.


Out on the golf course Monifa Sealy, ended the third round ranked 19th while Christina Ferreira was ranked 22nd. On the men’s side, Talin Rajendranath is currently ranked 27th after the third round of play, while Sachin Kumar is ranked 19th. In the mixed team event featuring all four golfers, Trinidad and Tobago is currently ranked 14th.  Golf continues tomorrow.

National junior track and field athlete Antonia Sealy currently sits in third position overall in the girls heptathlon 13-14 event after day one of the Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Age Group Championships at the Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port-of-Spain, yesterday.

In the seven-event category, Sealy has earned 1920 points after the 80-metre dash, the long jump and the shot put. In the 80m dash Sealy finished 11th overall with a time of 10.46 seconds (712 points), but then had some strong performances in the field events to jump to third overall at the end of day one.

In the girl’s long jump, Sealy had a top leap of 5.31m to finish second in the event behind Barbadian Charissa Moore who disturbed the sand at the 5.33m mark. Sealy was second again in the shot put event with a top throw of 10.09m. On this occasion she finished behind St Lucian Julien Alfred (10.13m). Alfred leads the standings after three events with 2053 points, ahead of Barbadian Akayla Morris (1921 points) and Sealy (1920 points). Another T&T athlete Safiya John is 11th overall after three events among the 28 competitors.

Today the girl’s heptathlon will conclude with the 60m hurdles, high jump, ball throw and the 1000m race. In the boy’s 13-14 heptathlon, T&T’s Avindale Smith is third overall after the first event—the 80m dash. Other T&T athletes Jordan Pope and Daniel Qiu also made strong starts in the boys 11-12 pentathlon, finishing fourth and fifth respectively in the boys 60m dash.

Jamaican Terrique Stennett is ahead after two events in the boys 11-12 Pentathlon with 1548 points with the Bahamian duo of Davon Johnson (1536) and Izaiah Farrington (1486) behind. Stennett blazed to the fastest 60m clocking of 7.59 to take the second of four races with Johnson recording the third best time of 7.71 in winning section four. Farrington was ninth quickest (8.13) but made up ground in the high jump take second with a clearance of 1.54 with Stennett in joint sixth (1.45).

Johnson was fifth (1.48). Stennett’s compatriot Mekale Gordon was the best in the high jumper of the day with a leap of 1.59m. Jordan Pope (14th-1435) and Daniel Qiu (9th-1385) were in the top ten.

The boys 11-12 Pentathlon competitors also contested the ball throw on the first day while the boys and girls 13-14 entrants battled in the shot put.


Today’s Day two schedule
Morning session
9:30am: 60m hurdles (G 13-14)/long jump (B 11-12); 10:00am: 80m hurdles (B 13-14); 10:15am: high jump (G 13-14); 10:45am: long jump (G 11-12); 10:45am: high jump (B 13-14); 12:15pm: Awards ceremony

Afternoon session
3:30pm: ball throw (G 13-14); 4:00pm: 800m (G 11-12); 4:30pm: ball throw (B 13-14); 4:45pm: 1000m (G 13-14); 5:00pm: 1000m (G 13-14); 5:30pm: 1200m(M 13-14); 6:00pm: Awards & Closing ceremony.


Sprint cyclist Njisane Phillip landed Trinidad and Tobago’s second medal of the Pan American Games last evening when he copped silver in the match sprint final in Toronto, Canada.

Phillip’s silver improved on ace swimmer George Bovell’s bronze in the men’s 50 metre freestyle final on Friday night.

Yesterday at the cycling velodrome, Olympian Phillip went down in straight rides to Canadian Hugo Barrette in the final, but had progressed there by beating Brazil’s Flavio Cipriano in straight rides in their semi-final match-up earlier yesterday. Phillip won the first ride in 10.711 seconds before returning to take the second ride-off in 10.761. He also registered a straight-rides success over Canada’s Joseph Veloce in their quarter-final duel on Friday night.

Taking third was Venezuela’s Hersony Canelon who beat Cipriano also in straight rides.

On Friday, Bovell clocked 22.17 seconds, but the USA’s Josh Schneider won gold in 21.86, with Bruno Fratus of Brazil taking silver in 21.91.

T&T’s other swimmer, Dylan Carter, won the B final in 22. 39 seconds after losing a swim-off against Puerto Rico’s Erik Risolvato for the final spot in the men’s A final after both men were tied for eighth position going into the final.

It was also a productive day at the beach for T&T’s women volleyballers Ayana Dyette and Malika Davidson. They defeated the Cayman Islands’ Chante Smith-Johnson and Lleann Powery 21-18, 21-18, for a 2-0 straight set victory in a playoff to decide positions 13 through 16. They now face Guatemala to decide 13th position at 10 a.m. today.

And the men’s pair of Fabien Whitfield and Daneil Williams missed out on a medal spot when they were defeated 21-16, 21-9 by Mexico’s Juan Virgen and Rodolfo Ontiveros in their quarter-final contest on Friday. Whitfield and Williams rebounded to beat Nicaragua’s Dany Lopez Alvarado and Reuben Mora Romero, 23-21, 17-21, 15-13, for a 2-1 win in a playoff match for positions 9th-12th. They face Venezuela tomorrow for ninth place.

In field hockey action, T&T’s men team suffered a narrow 2-1 loss at the hands of the USA in a Pool MA preliminary round match. William Holt gave the Americans the lead in the sixth minute and Alex Grassi made it 2-0 in the 13th before Ishmael Campbell pulled a goal back for T&T a minute later.

T&T’s Under-22 male footballers were beaten 5-1 by Paraguay late on Friday after midfielder Nathaniel Garcia gave them the lead in the 53rd minute of the match. The South Americans responded with goals from striker Carlos Ferreira (63rd & 71st), who came on as a substitute in the 56th minute, Ivan Ramirez (65th), Derlis Alegre (76th) and Arturo Aranda in the 79th.

T&T’s women footballers also went down 3-1 to Mexico and thus were denied a place in the semi-finals.

Stephany Mayor got a double in the first half for the Central Americans, But Mariah Shade replied six minutes into the second half before Monica Ocampo restored Mexico’s two-goal advantage in the 70th minute.

And in action on the water, T&T’s sailors Kelly-Ann Arrindell and Andrew Lewis had mixed fortunes. Arrindell captured top spot in the Women’s laser radial class medal race to pick up two race points but it was not enough to get her on the podium as her combined total of 72 points saw her finish joint fifth with Lucia Falasca of Argentina.

USA’s Paige Riley won gold with a total of 50 points, with silver going to Dolores Moreira of Uruguay while Brazil’s Fernanda Demetrio took bronze.

In the medal race of the Men’s laser, Lewis finished eighth and picked up 16 race points in the process to finish with a combined total of 90 which was good enough for seventh position overall.

Guatemala’s Juan Maegli won gold with a combined low score of 39 points with Robert Scheidt of Brazil capturing silver and Canada’s Lee Parkhill collecting bronze.


Saturday 18th, Toronto, Canada– Veteran swimmer, Olympic medallist, newly minted Pan Am bronze medallist and World Economic Forum Global Shaper George Bovell got to celebrate his birthday a little early yesterday. Not only did he win the bronze medal in the men’s 50m freestyle event, but also in so doing he became the first athlete to benefit from the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee’s medal bonus programme.

The medal bonus programme is an essential component of “TenGolds24,” the ten or more Olympic Gold medals by 2024 Athlete Welfare and Preparation Fund launched by the TTOC last year. As a bronze medallist Bovell will receive US$1000. It is fitting that he became the first athlete to benefit from the fund launched by TTOC President Brian Lewis last year. As a four time Olympian, Bovell is the Caribbean’s most successful swimmer, the holder of multiple world championship medals, a former world record holder and Sportsman of the year 2014. He embodies sporting excellence and the Olympic values of respect, excellence and friendship.


Few athletes has worked as hard as he has and given so much inside and outside of the pool. Most recently Bovell has partnered with Atlantic and other local organizations, to host successful several swim clinics in Trinidad and Tobago. The clinics, which were designed to enhance the technical abilities of young athletes, while providing them with strategies for use daily in training, have been hugely successful.


Bovell has already qualified for the Rio 2016 Olympics, and thus has another opportunity to add precious metal to his extensive medal collection. He represents the best of us. Happy Birthday.

Seventeen-year-old Khalifa St Fort set a new national Under 18 record to win silver in the Girls 100m sprint at the IAAF World Youth Championships in Cali, Colombia on Thursday night.

St Fort, who is coached by local sprint legend Ato Boldon, stopped the clock at 11.19 to finish behind American Candace Hill (11.08) while fellow US athlete Jayla Kirkland was third in 11.41. It went down as the eighth fastest Girls Under 18 100m time in history and marked St Fort's third personal best run in nine hours, following her 11.39 and 11.24 in her heat and semifinal respectively.

“A star is born,” tweeted a proud Boldon following the result. “Broadcasting doesn't feel this good.”

St Fort, who was born in the USA to a Trinidadian mother, began training under Boldon in 2014 after, according to Boldon, being “ignored by her high school coach for two and a half years” at the prestigious St. Thomas Aquinas sprint programme.

In an interview earlier this year, he had stated she was a special talent with a bright future.

“Understand this is not what I do—go seeking high school athletes,” Boldon said. “I am busy traveling the world and broadcasting in my jobs as broadcaster and ambassador for the sport, but when I see a young talent being wasted, I am compelled to get involved.”

President of the National Association of Athletic Administration Ephraim Serrette was full of praise for the young athlete.

“We have been getting updates from her coach and to have those performances means her preparation has been very good,” he said. “It augers well for the future of our female sprint team.”

In other events, Akanni Hislop withdrew from his 200m heat yesterday, having picked up a hamstring injury in the 100m semi-finals the day before. With a personal best of 20.91, Hislop was the fourth fastest sprinter entered in the event. His heat was won by Australian Jack Hale in 21.31.

Meanwhile, World 400m Hurdles champion Jehue Gordon has withdrawn from the ongoing Pan American Games in Toronto Canada on medical grounds following a request from his doctor and management team. Gordon was not among the T&T athletics team which departed from Piarco at 1:05 am yesterday morning.

According to a press release by the National Association of Athletic Administration, the 23-year-old is  “nursing a minor injury and it was felt best to allow him time to recuperate rather than be subject to intense competition ahead of the upcoming IAAF World Championships in Beijing.”

The release stated that the team's mood remained upbeat as the remaining athletes looked to build on their success this year.

“It's disappointing,” said Serrette. “You would want your best athletes to be in top shape in time for international meets.”