I would first like to congratulate the Antigua & Barbuda Carifta swim team for making its mark at this year’s Carifta Games held in The Bahamas.
It warms my heart to see that after all these years Antigua & Barbuda athletes, regardless of the club that they represent, are once again able to participate in competitions against other athletes within their age group and region.
Congratulations to the coaches and officials who made it possible for these athletes to qualify and compete at this event.
I would also like to extend heartfelt congratulations to Noah Mascoll-Gomes for making it to the finals of such a challenging event, being his first Carifta Games at such a young age.
Considering his age, I am sure that we can expect to see even more progress and feats from him along with his other young team-mates.
However, I feel that I should point out that although he may be the youngest athlete from Antigua & Barbuda to qualify for the finals at the Carifta Games, he is certainly not the first.
In the 1987 Trinidad Carifta Games, I, Narda Williams, competed in the 50m and 100m freestyle events and qualified for the finals in both events.
As it was Antigua & Barbuda’s first-time competing in the Carifta Games ever, my coach, team manager and even I didn’t look to see if I had qualified in the 100m, which was my first event.
I only found out that I qualified the day after the finals took place and someone told me that they had been calling my name on the loudspeaker to line up for the event.
However, we did pay better attention after the 50m and I did qualify and compete. I was 16 years old at the time and competed in the Senior Division, which is why I can say that Noah may be the youngest from Antigua & Barbuda to have qualified for the finals at any Carifta Games in swimming for which I congratulate him.