VI’s 1984 Olympians recognized, Paris 2024 Opening Wear revealed during Olympic Day celebrations

The BVI Olympic Committee, in collaboration with its member National Federations and in partnership with the H Lavity Stoutt Community College, hosted its 5th annual Sports Festival celebrating Olympic Day on Saturday, June 22 in the BVI.

The morning event, guided by BVIOC Athletes’ Commission Chair, Ashley Kelly OLY commenced with an Olympic Day message and remarks by BVIOC President Ephraim Penn on the 40th anniversary of BVI representation at the Olympic Games. Special recognition was given to the Los Angeles 1984 Olympians. They are track and field athletes Lindel “Chef” Hodge (200m, 4×400), Guy Hill (100m, 4x400m), Dean Greenaway (400m, 4 x 400m), Jerry Molyneux (800m, 4x400m) and the Soling Class team of sailors led by Dr. Robin Tattersall to include Keith Thomas and Elvet Meyers, with brothers Keith Barker and the late Peter Barker sailing in the 470 class. Tokens from the BVIOC were presented to the attending 1984 Olympians by His Excellency Governor Daniel Pruce and Honourable Sharie de Castro, Minster for Education, Youth Affairs and Sports.

Co-founder and Past President of the BVIOC, Rey O’Neal OBE gave an overview of the BVI’s participation in its first Summer Olympics, Los Angeles 1984.

Chef de Mission Tahesia Harrigan-Scott OLY followed up with an update on the Paris 2024 Games. The Paris 2024 Opening Ceremony wear for the BVI Team featuring a Paradise Blue fabric designed exclusively for the BVIOC by Kristin Frazer of Trefle Design was then displayed for the first time at the close of the ceremony.

“it is very fitting that, as we celebrate 40 years of attendance at the Olympic Games today, we are participating in the Paris 2024 Games with the same sports that we started off with at Los Angeles 1984 – track and field and sailing,” said BVIOC President Ephraim Penn. ”As we mark this special occasion as part of our Olympic Day celebrations, I encourage you all to take encouragement from our past Olympians and find a sport or some other physical activity that keeps you moving, keeps you active and keeps you fit at all stages of your life.”

Early morning runs hosted by the BVI Runners Club and in Virgin Gorda and Jost Van Dyke started the Olympic Day activities. The offerings included interactive stations hosted on the HLSCC campus grounds by the Virgin Islands Archery Association, BVI Cycling Federation, BVI Netball Club, the Virgin Islands Softball-Baseball Association and the Sea Cow’s Bay Basketball Club, and a maritime history display by the Department of Culture. Information on the marine and maritime courses at the college were offered by HLSCC representatives along with tours of the mangrove boardwalk.

On Brandywine Bay beach, the activities were offered by the Royal BVI Yacht Club, the Barracuda Swim Team and KATS, The BVI Football Association (BVIFA), BVI Rugby Football Union and Virgin Islands Volleyball Association. Over 200 participants of all ages who were registered across all activities in the territory were kept hydrated with complimentary Powerade and Dasani Water provided courtesy of Road Town Wholesale, distributors of Coca Cola products – an Olympic Games sponsor.

The BVI Athletics Association (BVIAA) also hosted its National Championships – Paris 2024 qualifier – as part of the Olympic Day celebrations on Friday June 21 and Saturday June 22.

The BVIOC thanks all National Federations and clubs, the HLSCC, coaches, volunteers and participants for hosting, supporting and joining in the activities designed to encourage people of all ages and abilities to learn, move and discover a sport that fits for a healthier life.

Click to see the gallery of photos of the day posted on the BVIOC Facebook page.

CTL, DLT Solutions, Conyers and Capriccio step in to support BVIOC roster of elite athletes on journey to Paris 2024 Olympic Games

With the Paris 2024 Summer Olympic Games just five months away, private sector businesses have stepped in to support the BVI Olympic Committee’s roster of elite athletes on their journey to the Games. The announcement of Clarence Thomas Ltd (CTL), DLT Solutions, Conyers and Capriccio as key sponsors of the renamed Tahesia Harrigan-Scott Elite Athlete Scholarship (THSEAS) fund was made at a media briefing held at the BVIOC office in Road Town on March 5.
 
For the past twelve years, starting in 2012, the BVIOC has provided a stipend framework that funds the development of the BVIOC’s elite athletes who are on track to compete for medals at major Games. 
 
The annual funding for the elite athlete scholarship initiative – renamed on March 5, 2024 to the Tahesia Harrigan-Scott Elite Athlete Scholarship – is currently $200,000 each year and comes in the form of athlete grants from the International Olympic Committee’s Olympic Solidarity (OS) and Panam Sports and is disbursed directly to the BVIOC’s quadrennial roster of elite athletes. The athletes are identified in collaboration with the National Federations, International Federations and OS.
 
The BVIOC’s current roster of elite athletes – all of whom are national and regional record holders with proven track records in major Games – include Kyron McMaster, silver medalist in World Championships and world ranked #4 in the men’s 400m hurdles, Chantel Malone (long jump), Eldred Henry (shot put), Rikkoi Brathwaite (100m) Adaejah Hodge (200m) and Thad Lettsome (ILCA 7 laser sailor).
 
“With medals in mind, the BVIOC is seeking to boost the monthly stipend for the 6  athletes on our roster identified as likely to make the team for Paris 2024 which takes place this summer July 26 – August 11,” said BVIOC and BVI Commonwealth Games Association President Ephraim Penn. “The annual sum for the programme has already been allocated and we are very grateful for the sponsors that have come on board this year to help with the additional funds required by the athletes to continue to cover the services of their respective coaches and therapists over the next five months.”
 
Explaining more about the scholarship programme, BVIOC/BVICGA Treasurer Mark Chapman said, “The THSEAS stipend contributes to training and coaching, athlete support including access to sports medicine, physical therapy, performance analysis, nutrition counselling, and mental resilience training. These resources are critical in helping athletes reach their full potential and achieve success at the international level. Our reporting system for the grants ensures accountability and transparency in the distribution of funds.”
 
President Penn also mentioned that going forward, the THSEAS programme will benefit from a committee comprising representatives of the BVIOC, beneficiary athletes’ National Federations and sponsors to review and discuss the ongoing needs and disbursement of funds to the roster of athletes.
 
CTL has committed to supporting the THSEAS programme for four years with an annual sponsorship of $10,000. Mr. David Thomas, Operations Manager speaking at the media briefing said, “Clarence Thomas Ltd has always been at the forefront in trying to help any development that happens in our country. We believe in supporting and assisting where we can in the development of our future stars. We are in a unique position right now with our current world class athletes with more coming up so it wasn’t difficult for us to come on board and help.”
 
Sharing comments remotely on behalf of Mr. Ronan Kuczaj, Founder and CEO of DLT Solutions, who have sponsored the THSEAS fund with a $10,000 donation for 2024, BVIOC Secretary General Lloyd Black said, “DLT Solutions is delighted to be an officer sponsor of the programme.  We acknowledge the immense dedication and sacrifice made by the athletes and their families in pursuing their dreams and also representing the Virgin Islands. Speaking personally, we felt compelled to donate to this project as a tribute to the late and great Dag Samuels, whose infectious spirit surrounded us when we were playing rugby on the field adjacent to his superlative track and field program.  Dag’s joyful smile lives long in the memory, much like his athletic legacy, evidenced by this latest crop of talented athletes.”
 
Conyers has contributed $10,000 to the programme for the road to Paris 2024 with an option to renew the commitment thereafter. Mark Forte, Managing Partner and Head of Litigation and Restructuring for Conyers said, “As a major employer within the community we believe strongly in supporting various initiatives in the community and are attracted to programmes that help develop, address the future and aspirations of talent. We identify with the notions of perseverance, commitment, achievement, dedication and no short cuts so we are proud to play a part and congratulate all those involved in the [THSEAS] programme. We wish all the best to our athletes and look forward to watching them strive in Paris – it’s not all about winning but it’s about development of the individual, the team, the community, and the country is the most important thing.”
 
Mark Forte, who also is a partner in the Capriccio di Mare Trattoria in Road Town, made a surprise commitment at the media briefing announcing a contribution of $5000 by the Italian restaurant to the THSEAS programme.
 
Attending the media briefing remotely, Chef de Mission for Paris 2024, Tahesia Harrigan-Scott OLY stressed the importance of the financial support provided by the fund that helps to remove the burden of stress from the athletes. Acknowledging the support from the BVIOC and the sponsors, Harrigan-Scott said “the progression and medals come with a level of responsibility and commitment, not only from the athletes but form the supporting members and everyone in the BVI. I commend the BVIOC and sponsors and encourage others to contribute what they can and be part of the journey and the mission.”
 
National Federation representatives, BVI Athletics Association President Steve Augustine and RBVIYC Sailing Association Administrator Ms. Tamsin Rand thanked the sponsors. Each provided an overview of the respective sports development and importance of the funding to support athletes’ progress. BVIOC Member at Large Gloria Fahie concluded the briefing with a vote of thanks and invitation for additional sponsors of the programme.

The announcement of the major sponsors included a brief virtual appearance and words of thanks from 400m hurdler Kyron McMaster OBE OLY, who said, “Everyone benefiting from this programme thanks you tremendously because the saying “it takes a village to raise one” is apt for the BVI. We are not as big as the nations of the world we are up against. We are a small fish trying to make big waves in an ocean and with the support we are getting from the BVIOC and the private sector, these funds help us to move mountains you can’t imagine!”
 
THSEAS sponsors have access to tickets to select events at Paris 2024. Entities who would like to support the THSEAS programme are invited to contact the BVIOC office by email at info@bviolympics.org or call (284) 346 8375 or visit the THSEAS web page for more information.

Kyron McMaster shares inspiration across the generations during home visit

400m hurdler Kyron McMaster – two-times Commonwealth Games Champion and NACAC Champion and Record Holder – had his audience basking in his positive energy as he was welcomed back in the International Departure Lounge at the Road Town Ferry Terminal by family members, Government officials and media for his brief visit to the Virgin Islands. PHOTO: BVICGA

Within moments of stepping back on to home soil on September 15, returning hero, 400m hurdler Kyron McMaster – two-times Commonwealth Games Champion and NACAC Champion and Record Holder – had his audience basking in his positive energy as he was welcomed back in the International Departure Lounge at the Road Town Ferry Terminal by family members, Government officials and media for his brief visit to the Virgin Islands.

The recurring theme in the welcome remarks shared by Acting Governor His Excellency David Archer, Acting Premier Honourable Kye Rymer and the Minister for Education, Culture, Youth Affairs and Sports, Honourable Sharie B. De Castro, was the selflessness of McMaster as he consistently steered the limelight away from his own achievements to focus on the needs of the aspiring athletes in the community and the necessity of directing resources to developing sports across the board.

His gold medal winning performance at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games was acknowledged by speakers for making history as the first time the Territorial Song was played at a major international Games – an emotional occasion generating tears of pride and joy. McMaster also was recognised for being a true ambassador for the Territory.

“Kyron is an athlete but he is more than that – he is an ambassador supreme for the British Virgin Islands,” said Ephraim Penn, President of the BVI Commonwealth Games Association. “He has done so much for his country. He carries himself in a special way and is always looking out for the next generation of athletes – directing any offer of assistance to those that are coming up. He has always shown that genuine concern for the other athletes and I take this opportunity to thank him for his genuine interest in sports development and to thank Kyron and the other senior athletes who, through their hard work, are paving the way for young athletes of the future.”

Receiving a reward cheque from the Government of the Virgin Islands in the amount of $38,000 presented to him by Honourable De Castro, McMaster voiced his appreciation of the funds acknowledging the payment as being a motivator for his gold medal wins at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, which earned him $30,000 and the NACAC Championships with a national reward of $8,000. Both competitions took place in August.

Kyron McMaster received a reward cheque from the Government of the Virgin Islands in the amount of $38,000 presented to him by Honourable De Castro for his gold medal wins at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, which earned him $30,000 and the NACAC Championships with a national reward of $8,000. Both competitions took place in August. PHOTO: BVICGA

“I’ve been around the block experiencing the highs and the lows and I know what’s in store for the future athletes,” said McMaster whose path to winning championship titles included consecutive 8th place finishes. “If you don’t have that push it’s easy to quit so I feel it’s imperative that we target the younger ones now because they are blinded by not seeing the success of working hard straight away, which therefore makes it easy for them to stray. It’s necessary for them to see the journey and hard work to get to this point of success.”

McMaster stated that his future goals include contesting the gold medal at the World Championships and the Olympics, which he plans to achieve by making some changes and working smarter. His ultimate goal is to break the world record and put the BVI in the sports history books around the world.

During his time at home, McMaster visited his two alma maters in Tortola – the Ebenezer Thomas Primary School (ETPS) in Sea Cow’s Bay and the Elmore Stoutt High School (ESHS) in Road Town.

On September 16, ETPS received McMaster with a line-up of students with placards bearing his name and chanting “welcome home”. Remarks were shared by Principal Sybil Hodge, District Representative Julian Fraser, President Penn, BVI Athletics Association President Steve Augustine and Hon. De Castro. An interactive Q & A session with the kindergartners through 6th graders was rounded off with McMaster signing scores of autographs before being challenged to a couple of races in the playground. McMaster secured his reputation with the school children by winning the impromptu events leaving one young student to wonder whether the two races were the fastest times the champion had ever run.

Junior students at ESHS listened intently to McMaster as he spoke at the 8:00am assembly on September 20. Reflecting on his own experiences, he advised his audience that if they wanted to succeed in life, they should pay attention to their teachers and to work hard as a failure to do so now will lead to a tougher journey in the future. He also admonished anyone listening to be true to themselves, set aside negative attitudes, find a passion, set a goal and execute in order to “earn their bread”. His words hit home not just with the youngsters, but also the adults in attendance who thanked him for the inspiration to stop procrastinating and reset their focus on achieving their dreams.

Kyron McMaster’s schedule of public engagements ended with a reception at Government House hosted on September 20 by the Acting Governor His Excellency David Archer

McMaster’s schedule of public engagements ended with a reception at Government House hosted on September 20 by the Acting Governor. The event brought full circle the receptions hosted by His Excellency the Governor for the Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay in May and the send-off in July for the athletes and delegation who participated in the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

The upcoming major Games McMaster plans to compete at include the San Salvador 2023 CAC Games in El Salvador (June 23 – July 8), the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary (August 19 – 27), the Santiago 2023 Pan American Games in Chile (October 20 – November 5) and the Paris 2024 Olympics in France (July 26 – August 11).

Team BVI wraps up Birmingham 2022 appearance with Gold medal and invaluable experience

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND – AUGUST 06: Kyron McMaster of Team British Virgin Islands celebrates after winning the gold medal in the Men’s 400m Hurdles Final on day nine of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games at Alexander Stadium on August 06, 2022 on the Birmingham, England. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games ended on August 8 with a spectacle of fireworks and artists as teams from 72 countries walked into the Alexander Stadium for the Closing ceremony. Joy Victor, a member of the 3×3 basketball team was the flagbearer for the BVI.

The territory was represented at the Games by 17 athletes competing in 4 sports – squash, 3×3 basketball, track and field and cycling. The crowning glory of the 9 days of competition for the team was the success of defending champion Kyron McMaster who, once again, delivered for the nation by winning the gold medal in the 400m hurdles with a time of 48.93.

“This was the largest team that we have taken to a Commonwealth Games and I can say that the athletes rallied in friendship and support ensuring a firm sense of team spirit,” said Chef de Mission Mark Chapman. “The athletes had solid assistance from their coaches both on and off the field and benefited from the treatment on tap provided by Chiropractor Thomas Jeppesen. It was good to see the athletes support each other’s competitions and the 3×3 players also had the opportunity to enjoy pickup games in the neighbourhood.

“The enthusiasm of those new to the Games and their appreciation of the opportunity to compete was encouraging and will be recorded as an eye opening and memorable occasion.”

In advance of the track and field events, the Chef de Mission and Ashley Kelly, the Caribbean Region Athlete Representative for the Commonwealth Games Federation, hosted the team and delegation at a “team family” dinner.

The Premier Dr. The Honourable Natalio Wheatley paid a visit to the athletes in the Village on July 27. A week later, the Minister for Education, Culture, youth Affairs and Sports, Honourable Sharie de Castro visited the Village and was in attendance at the track and field and cycling events and also hosted a gathering for the diaspora ahead of McMaster’s 400m hurdles final.

“Birmingham 2022 has been a great experience for all of the athletes making their first appearance at a major Games,” said President Penn, President of the BVI Commonwealth Games Association. “It has given them an idea of what it means to compete on the world stage and to be against the top athletes from the participating countries. The hope is that this will fuel their fire and serve to set their targets beyond the local and regional meets they have excelled at so far and be on a trajectory to join our body of elite athletes who have secured top 10 rankings in the world.

“On behalf of the BVI Commonwealth Games Association, I thank the athletes, coaches and volunteers for their relentless efforts, commitment and dedication to representing the territory with pride at Birmingham 2022.”

The team was led by Chef de Mission Mark Chapman. The delegation included BVI Commonwealth Games President Ephraim Penn, Team Manager Ralston Henry and Coaches Adam Murrills (squash), Eric Matthias (throwing, 3×3 basketball), Lennox Graham, Joey Scott (track), and Paul Cullimore (cycling).

Birmingham 2022 took place July 28 – August 8 and was the 22nd edition of the Commonwealth Games with 11 days of sports comprising 286 sessions, covering 19 sports in which athletes from 72 nations competed for podium finishes. The next Commonwealth Games will take place in 2026 in Victoria, Australia.

Summary of events

Squash

Veteran player Joe Chapman was joined by Luca Reich who celebrated his 19th birthday with a Commonwealth Games debut, playing in Round of 64 in the Men’s Singles. While neither player advanced through to Round of 32, Chapman won his Plate Round of 32 match against Jules Snagg (St Vincent and the Grenadines) but lost to Julian Morrison (Jamaica) in the Plate quarter finals. The duo then competed in the Men’s Doubles and lost their match against Velvan Selthinkumar and Abhay Singh of India.

Basketball

For the first time in sporting history, the BVI was represented at a Commonwealth Games by basketball when a team of 4 players participated in the 3×3 event facing 3 major countries: Canada (6-22), England (5-21) and New Zealand (5 – 19). The team, comprising Joy Victor, Shauliqua Fahie, Mahkayla Pickering and Keithrece Smith, faced a baptism by fire and quickly learned the standard, speed and style of play employed by the more experienced players. By their final match, played against New Zealand, team BVI stuck to their new game strategy and succeeded in outplaying the clock to prevent their opponents from scoring the full 21 points (3×3 basketball uses half a court with 1 hoop, 2 teams of 3 + 1 sub. It’s a fast 10-minute game with a 12-second shot-clock. There’s no break after scoring, no half-time and no quarters. The first to 21 points before the time runs out wins the game. If the clock runs out before 21 points, the team with the highest sore wins).

Cycling

Darel Christopher Jr and Sam Talbot both competed in their first Commonwealth Games when they raced in the Time Trial and Road Race. Christopher Jr completed the TT – an event which is a race against the clock – in a time of 58:06.36 with a ranking of 41/54 and Talbot finished in a time of 56:06.67 for a 37/54 ranking. The Road Race was the second of the cycling events. The two cycled in a group of participants from the Caribbean and Africa and after completing 48km of the 160km course, in 3 laps, the group of 51 cyclists were pulled from the race in accordance with the race rules and regulations established for the safety of all riders.

Track and Field

Nine athletes competed in track and field events, Rikkoi Brathwaite (100m), Adriano Gumbs (400m – non-advancing time of 48.87 in the heats), Djimon Gumbs (discus – non advancing distance of 32.32, shot put – 10th place with a distance of 17.18), Deya Erickson (100m hurdles – non-advancing time of 13.94 in the heats) and Beyonce Defreitas (200m) made their major Games debut as they joined veterans Kyron McMaster (400m hurdles), Eldred Henry (shot put), Tynelle Gumbs (hammer throw – non advancing distance of 46.90) and Trevia Gumbs (shot put – non advancing distance of 13.27)).

Brathwaite progressed to the semi-finals where he ran a non-advancing time of 10.31 placing 4th in his group. Defreitas also went through to the semi-finals and placed 15/24 with a time of 23.81.

Eldred Henry, competing in what is only his 3rd meet of the outdoor season placed 5th with a season’s best of 19.97.

Athletes settle in at Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games. Premier pays visit to the Village

Premier Dr. The Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley, accompanied by Mrs. Tracey Bradshaw, Director, BVI London Office, were welcomed to the Athlete’s Village in Birmingham by Chef de Mission, Mark Chapman and President of the BVI Commonwealth Games Association Ephraim Penn on Wednesday, July 27.

Thirteen of the expected 18 athletes, along with members of the BVI delegation to the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games have arrived in the UK ahead of the Opening Ceremony on Thursday, July 28. 

Settling into the Athlete’s Village in Birmingham are squash players in the Men’s singles and doubles, Joe Chapman and Luca Reich along with Coach Adam Murrills, the 3×3 basketball team comprising Joy Victor, Shauliqua Fahie, Keithrece Smith, Mahkayla Pickering and Coach Eric Matthias and contingents of the track and field team including Rikkoi Brathwaite (100m), Beyoncé Defreitas (200m), Adriano Gumbs (400m) the two sets of Gumbs twins, sisters Tynelle (hammer throw) and Trevia (shot put) and their brothers, Djimon (discus, shot put) and Diamanté (discus). Physiotherapist Thomas Jeppesen and Team Manager, Ralston Henry are also at the Village.

Arriving later this week will be the remaining track and field athletes including gold medalist and 400m hurdles defending champion, Kyron McMaster, Eldred Henry (shot put) and Deya Erickson (100m hurdles) along with Coaches Lennox Graham, Joey Scott. Time trial and road race cyclists Darel Christopher Jr and Sam Talbot and Coach Paul Cullimore will also arrive on Saturday.

Premier Dr. The Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley, accompanied by Mrs. Tracey Bradshaw, Director, BVI London Office, were welcomed to the Athlete’s Village in Birmingham by Chef de Mission, Mark Chapman and President of the BVI Commonwealth Games Association, Ephraim Penn on Wednesday, July 27. The Premier shared words of encouragement with the athletes before joining the team for dinner at the Village.

The squash Men’s singles Preliminary Round of 64, which takes place tomorrow, Friday, July 29 will be the first event for the BVI when Reich plays against Emyr Evans of Wales at 12:00pm local time (7:00am BVI time) and Chapman plays against Abhay Singh of India at 7.15pm UK time (2:15pm BVI time).  The 3×3 basketball team will then face Canada in the Group Match on Saturday, July 30. The competition schedule for the BVI will be shared following the technical meetings. 

Birmingham 2022 is the 22nd edition of the Commonwealth Games with 11 days of sports comprising 286 sessions, covering 19 sports in which athletes from 72 nations will compete for championship titles. 
Updates on the team will be posted on the BVIOC Facebook and Instagram accounts and you can watch the action on SportsMax

Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay brings unity through community in the BVI – Full Report

On May 3 and 4, the BVI Olympic Committee (BVIOC) in its capacity as the Commonwealth Games Association (BVICGA) hosted the Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay in the Virgin Islands (UK). The Queen’s Baton toured communities on Tortola and Virgin Gorda heralding the upcoming Commonwealth Games which will be held in Birmingham, UK from July 28 to August 8, 2022.

The Queen’s Baton arrived from Dominica into the Terrence B. Lettsome International Airport on Monday, May 2 and was presented by Ms. Korlita Hamilton of the Dominica CGA to Mr. Ephraim Penn, President of the BVICGA.

The Welcome and Opening Ceremony on Tuesday, May 3 at the A. O. Shirley Recreation Games officially marked the start of Queen’s Baton Relay in the BVI with remarks by His Excellency Governor John Rankin, the Honourable Premier Dr. Natalio Wheatley and Mr. Penn, and an explanation of the workings of the Queen’s Baton by Mr. Joe Chapman, Baton Manager and 4x Commonwealth Games squash player.

The ceremony started with the Althea Scatliffe Striders Drum Corps and the entrance of the Queen’s Baton brought in by past Commonwealth Games athletes to include Lindel “Chef” Hodge, Steve Augustine, Ralston “Grandfather” Henry, Tynelle Gumbs, Trevia Gumbs and Joe Chapman. It was followed by a programme of recitals and performances of cultural and heritage significance curated by Dr. Katherine Smith, Director of the Department of Culture and presented by Poet Laureate Dr. Richard Georges, President of the HLSCC; author and poet Miss. Anika Christopher, Birmingham 2022 QBR Creative Programme Awardee; Mr. Phil Aspinall, MBE, Operations Manager, Virgin Islands Search & Rescue; the Comfoo Dance Ensemble; Leonora Delville Primary School; and the Razor Blades.

The relay through Road Town was started by the BVI Athletics Association Carifta 2022 athletes and Honourable Kye Rymer, District 5 Representative. The route followed a heritage trail and Baton handover stops starting from the Sugarworks Museum (Batonbearer D’Nila Thomas, student Althea Scatliffe Primary School), to the J. R. O’Neal Botanic Gardens (Batonbearer Ms. Vanessa King, O’Neal Webster), to the Sunday Morning Well (Batonbearer Mr. David Thomas, Clarence Thomas Ltd), to the E. Walwyn Brewley Ball Park (Batonbearers V I Softball Baseball Association), to the Elmore Stoutt High School (Batonbearer Jelani Croal, Grade 12, ESHS) to H.M. Prison Museum (Batonbearer Mr. Matthew Cowman, Walkers (BVI) Limited), to Midtown Restaurant (Batonbearers Caribbean Insurance Ltd), to the Noel Lloyd Positive Action Movement Park (Batonbearers representatives of the BVI Bank Association), to the Waterfront Drive traffic lights (Batonbearers Coralisle Group), to Sir Olva Georges Plaza (Batonbearers Road Town Wholesale Trading Ltd) to the Adina Donovan Home for the Elderly (Batonbearer, Mrs. Vicki Francis, Governor’s Office) to the Old Government House Museum. Information was shared on the history of the location at each of the heritage and museum sites.

The Queen’s Baton was driven to the Ebenezer Thomas Primary School where it was met with vigorous enthusiasm by the students, staff and faculty. The relay to the Manuel Reef Marina was led by Batonbearers Honourable Julian Fraser, District 3 Representative, Mr. Milton McClean, Youth Sports leader, and Jehu Adams, Grade 6, ETPS. Adams handed the Baton over to Royal BVI Yacht Club sailing federation youth sailor, William Sanders and Mr. Jamel Davies, Chairman of the Tortola Sloop Foundation who sailed the Baton to the beach at Nanny Cay where it was handed over to Mr. Miles Sutherland-Pilch, General Manager, Nanny Cay Resort and Marina.

The afternoon visit included a stop at Carrot Bay to recognise the Stoutt family of fishermen – father Albert and sons Zacchari and Andrew – who continue to supply the local community and restaurants with fish and lobster caught in the traditional and sustainable way of seine and line fishing and free diving.

The Queen’s Baton was then welcomed at the Leonora Delville Primary School joined by student and teacher representation from the Jost Van Dyke Primary School and celebrated with dance and a symbolic relay around the school field with Batonbearers Frank Chinnery (JVDPS).

Day 1 of the relay concluded with a visit to the coal pit at Capoon’s Bay where the pit owner, Mr. Palett explained the process for preparing, generating and harvesting charcoal in the traditional way.

An evening reception hosted by the Governor was attended by the Carifta 2022 athletes, Commonwealth Games athletes and representatives of the National Federations.

The second and final day of the Queen’s Baton Relay saw the Queen’s Baton and accompanying delegation transported to Virgin Gorda courtesy of the Royal Virgin Islands Marine Police and H.M. Customs. The visit included a warm welcome reception organised by the Primary and Secondary schools of the Bregado Flax Education Center with remarks by Secondary Principal Hilroy George, Honourable Shereen Flax-Charles, Honourable Vincent Wheatley, District 9 Representative, and Mr. Penn. Presentations were performed by the Woodwind Ensemble, the BEFC Trio and the BFEC Lions and Arabians Cheerleaders.

A visit to the school’s Edible Garden of the Green Sprouts Eco Club managed by Green and Clean VI was followed by a relay led by Batonbearers, brothers Mekhi Water (Grade 12) and Audony Gangoo (Grade 5) from the school to the Green VI Eco Park where all guests were given a tour and overview of the work undertaken at the site by Green VI in association with Green VI Bug Out and which speak to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

The penultimate leg of the Queen’s Baton Relay took a route through East End and Long Look with heritage sites and handover stops starting at the Chapel Hill Methodist Church with a brief history shared by Dr. Lavon Chalwell-Brewely before Batonbearer Dean Greenaway led the relay to Penn’s Landing handing over to Honourable Marlon Penn, District 8 Representative.

From there the Queen’s Baton was run to the Willard Wheatley Primary School (Batonbearer Jacobi David) to the East End Police Station (Batonbearer Mrs. Sylvia Forbes) to the Francis Lettsome Primary School (Batonbearer Damir Dobson) to the Long Look Methodist Church and the Stickett where Batonbearer Mrs. Brenda Lettsome-Tye, Director Department of Youth Affairs and Sports led the relay to the Long Look Tennis and Education Center to hand over to the youth and senior Cycling Federation members who cycled the Queen’s Baton to the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College via YEP.

At the HLSCC, the Baton was handed over to Ms. Winnette Lawrence of the V I Archery Association who passed it on to Dr. Richard Georges, President of the HLSCC who handed over to the HLSCC Volleyball team. The Baton was then jogged across to the Maritime Museum by students of the Marine Studies before a handover to Phillipe Leroy, representing the BVI Triathlon Federation, who, followed by others, cycled the Queen’s Baton on the final leg of the relay which culminated at Brandywine Bay beach.

The Queen’s Baton Relay in the BVI was brought to a close when members of the BVI Rugby Federation received the Baton followed by handovers to the BVI Football Association and the VI Volleyball Association. Each of the three National Federations showcased their sports in demo games on the beach with a traditional-rules, tug-of-war refereed by Mr. Elmore Stoutt ending the sports before closing remarks by Mr. Penn, President of the BVICGA. The grand finale was a cultural presentation speaking to national heritage and the VI’s history and maritime connections. Attendees were entertained and educated by songs, dances and story-telling performed by the Zion Sounds, Ms. Bria Smith, the Comfoo Dance Ensemble, the Heritage Dancers, Mrs. Lettsome and Miss Rosie Smith.

The key stakeholders involved in the planning and hosting of events included the Governor’s Office, the Premier’s Office, the Ministry of Education, Culture Youth Affairs, Agriculture and Fisheries, the Departments of Culture, Education, and Youth Affairs and Sports, the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force and the BVI Tourist Board.

Event sponsors include the BVI Banking Association – Banco Popular, Bank of Asia, CIBC FirstCaribbean, FirstBank, National Bank of the Virgin Islands, Republic Bank, and VP Bank – Caribbean Insurance Ltd, Clarence Thomas Ltd, Coralisle Insurance (BVI) Ltd, O’Neal Webster, Road Town Wholesale Trading Ltd, Walkers, Harneys and JOMA Properties.

National Federations, schools, and community and social groups supported the event as volunteers and participants in the relays through the districts.

The BVICGA has hosted four Queen’s Baton Relays since 2005, the last one being in 2017 ahead of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia where Kyron McMaster made history by winning the territory’s first Commonwealth Games medal with a gold in the 400m hurdles.

The VI is expecting to take its largest contingent yet to the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games with 19 athletes representing the territory in 5 sports – a first for the nation. 3×3 Basketball (Women’s Team) and Cycling will make their debut at a Commonwealth Games as the teams join athletes from track and field, squash and swimming.

The 16th official Queen’s Baton Relay touring through 72 Commonwealth nations and Overseas Territories will cover a distance of 140,000 kilometres over 269 days, traveling to Europe, Africa, Asia, Oceania, the Caribbean and the Americas, before embarking on the final stretch of its journey across England for 25 days.

The Queen’s Baton Relay will complete its journey at the Opening Ceremony of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games on 28 July 2022. This is a traditional and fundamental part of the Games and the Opening Ceremony, as the final Batonbearer will pass the Baton back to The Queen. The Queen’s message to the Commonwealth will then be removed from the Baton and read aloud, marking the official start of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Photos of the Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay touring the BVI can be seen on the BVIOC’s Facebook page.

Student Batonbearers:

Althea Scatliffe School (ASPS), Road Town, Tortola
D’Niya Thomas (Handover at the Sugarworks Museum, Day 1)
D’Niya has represented for several years for Inter-Primary Spors. She has been the Victrix for Inter-House and Inter-Primary as well.

Elmore Stoutt High School, Road Town, Tortola (Day 1)
Jelani Croal
– Grade 12
Jelani was chosen because he is one of ESHS’ top athletes during the Inter-House competition and who went on to do very well at Carifta 2022

Ebenezer Thomas Primary School, Sea Cow’s Bay, Tortola (Day 1)
Jehu Adams
– Grade 6
Jehu is a hard-working, dedicated, disciplined and helpful young man who is the top Grade Six student for the Advent and Trinity terms of the 2021-2022 school year. Along with his classmates, he is actively involved in the process of planting and maintaining the crops in the school’s garden. He is also very much involved in anything that would enhance the lives of his classmate. Jehu is often involved in peer tutoring within the classroom. He has specifically been assigned to assist and mentor one of the ESL students. He assists him with in-class tasks, projects and homework whenever necessary.
Additionally, during the Lent term, Grade Six had started a recycling project. Jehu was actively involved in collecting, sorting and recording the data for the materials. He along with another student took the materials to the school’s recycling bins.
Jehu has proudly and effectively represented his school at various competitions and other extracurricular activities. Presently, he and another student are preparing to represent the school at the national spelling bee competition. Jehu’s self-less attitude and commitment to learning are admirable and examples to his peers.

Leonora Delville Primary School, Capoon’s Bay, Tortola (Day 1)
Mijael Jennings
(LDPS)
Kh’mahni Anthony (LDPS)
Frank Chinnery (Jost Van Dyke Primary School) – selected because he is an excellent athlete and the perfect representative for an event such as the Queen’s Baton Relay.

Bregado Flax Education Center, Virgin Gorda (Day 2)
BFEC Senior Division
Mekhi Water – Senior – Class of 2022
Mekhi is an all-round athlete excelling in Volleyball (BFEC) who also is the Football national U20 goalkeeper and of the VG United football club. He also is a Track and Field division winner. He is a diligent and committed student of the BFEC Senior School.

BFEC Primary Division
Audony Gangoo – Grade 5
Audony is one who we call a true Lion Ambassador. He puts his best foot forward in whatever he does. He is from a single parent home with 4 other siblings. This does not deter him from excelling in school, in sports and being one of our school ambassadors. Audony recently participated in the Inter-Primary Sports and ran in the 13+ category. Despite being pushed up to the older level, he persevered and came 2nd and 3rd in his races. He was determined to do his very best.

Currently, he is one of the top students in Grade 5, and he ensures that he continues is a positive influence for his peers.

Willard Wheatley Primary School, East End, Tortola (Day 2)
Jacobi David
– Grade 6
Jacobi has grown into a positive student. He is a good athlete and displays good sportsmanship. He continues to represent the school well in sports and never refuses when he is asked to do something. He is a team player and as this is his final year at WWPS, we feel he deserves the honour of carrying the Baton.

Francis Lettsome Primary School, Greenland, Tortola (Day 2)
Damir Dobson
– Grade 6
Damir is an enthusiastic 13-year-old, who excels in sports as one of his extracurricular endeavours. Damir is son to Earle Dobson and Glasmie Williamson. He represents his school at sporting events, and has been a top athlete, and proud Wildcat of FLPS, in Greenland, Tortola. Damir is the Francis Lettsome Primary School Wildcats’ 2022 Queen’s Relay Baton Bearer, because of his keen spirit, respectfulness, dedication to learning, willingness to help, community service, and pride in representing his school.

Athlete performances at Tokyo 2020 Olympics brings BVI in sight of podium – BVIOC seeks investment into elite athletes

The British Virgin Islands was represented by 3 athletes in 2 sports at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games which concluded on August 8 with a closing ceremony at the Olympic Stadium. The small team comprising Kyron McMaster (400m hurdles), Chantel Malone (long jump) and Elinah Phillip (50m freestyle) was the strongest set to represent the territory at any Olympic Games.

Eldred Henry (shot put) was the first athlete to have qualified for Tokyo 2020 but he was forced to pull out due to an injury in his throwing arm.

In a Game of firsts for the territory, McMaster and Malone became the BVI’s first 2 athletes to advance to the finals to compete amongst the world’s best athletes in their events. They each were the first athletes to compete in the hurdles and long jump respectively. McMaster was the first athlete to win his heats and the first to make the top 4 finalists to cross the line with his time of 47.08 – current 4th fastest time and the world’s 8th fastest time ever – in what has been classed as the event’s fastest Olympic race. McMaster and Phillip also set National Records with Phillip’s time of 25.74 marking her as the top Caribbean performer in the 50m Free.

Harrigan-Scott, a three-times Olympian and the first female to represent the BVI at the Olympics in 2008, led the organisation and management of the team at the Games.

Speaking at a wrap up virtual press conference on August 4 after the final competition for the BVI, Ephraim Penn, President of the BVI Olympic Committee congratulated and thanked the athletes, their coaches and National Federations and also acknowledged the efforts of the Chef de Mission and Lloyd Black, Secretary General for the BVIOC, who was the COVID Liaison Officer for the delegation.

Penn went on to explain that the impressive results of the team at the Games was many years in the making that required planning and funding to support the athletes in their training and preparations for the Games. He highlighted that the performances put the athletes as serious podium contenders in upcoming Games and that the opportunity was open to the private sector to support the pathway to get athletes to the finals and ultimately to the podium of the Olympics.

“The athletes have been preparing for these Games for 5 years and are recipients of an Olympic Scholarship which offers financial and technical support so they can train and compete at qualifying meets for the Olympics. In addition, the BVIOC set up an Elite Athlete scholarship which puts money into the hands of the athletes to ease their financial stress so that they can concentrate on preparing for competition. Their successes at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will make it easier for us to try and solicit more funding from the private sector and bolster the structure we have in place to support them so they can develop to the best of their ability.”

The Chef de Mission, who is responsible for the organisation and logistical management of the delegation as well as the technical aspects of the athletes’ competitions and daily schedules and activities while at the Games, reviewed the athletes’ performances and acknowledged the commitment of their coaches and support of the BVIOC and encouraged a forward movement to help the athletes reach their potential.

“While our athletes may come from a small nation where the resources are more limited than larger countries, they come to compete with the same heart, talent and dedication so if we can figure out a way to level the playing field and really invest in them, you will be surprised at where they can take us because they are at that level and they are exceptionally good.”

Harrigan-Scott wrapped up the experience with a reflection on the organisation of the Games. “It actually was an amazing Games and the organisers, volunteers and Government of Japan did an incredible job under the constraints and concerns of the COVID-19 pandemic. I am glad the Games were not cancelled as the athletes were ready to compete and we have seen some exceptional performances here.”

Dr. the Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley, MHA. Deputy Premier Minister for Education, Culture, Youth Affairs, Fisheries and Agriculture, who was in Japan to witness the finals, congratulated the athletes on their achievements and thanked them and the delegation for their roles in the success of the BVI’s appearance at Tokyo 2020 and to pledge more support for the athletes.

“We now understand what it takes to compete at this level and I will be focused on what we can do to assist more. We know that we have to invest more in sports and be more consistent in our support for our athletes and I will be working on this in consultation with the BVIOC,” said Dr. the Honourable Minister Wheatley.

In addition to the 3 athletes, the Chef de Mission, Ephraim Penn and Lloyd Black the BVI delegation included Team Coach Winston Potter, Coach Lennox Graham (McMaster), Coach Dwight Phillips (Malone), Coach Brien Moffitt (Elinah) and Sofia Fay, BVIOC PRO/Reporter.

The athletes, including Henry who is on the road to recovery, will continue with their training and preparations for upcoming competitions after a short rest and recovery break. A return date to the BVI is not yet confirmed based on their training and competition schedules. Malone and McMaster have sights on competing at the Diamond League events in Europe in August and September respectively.

Kyron McMaster delivers historic performance at Tokyo 2020 Olympic finals

Kyron McMaster of Team British Virgin Islands competes during round one of the Men’s 400m hurdles heats on day seven of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on July 30, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

Kyron McMaster wrapped up Team BVI’s performance at the Tokyo Olympic Games on August 3 with an historic 4th place finish in what is classed as the fastest 400m Hurdles race of all time. McMaster’s time of 47.08 sets a new National Record and Personal Best and is ranked as the 5th top fastest times at an Olympics and the 8th all time fastest in the world. He is the first BVI athlete to achieve a top 4 position in an Olympic final.

“Being in the race felt amazing. The plan was to come out and just execute the race as best as possible. I came into this race with a personal best of 47.50 and I chopped off 0.4 off my best and I literally gave it my all,” said McMaster.

4 years ago, 47.08 would have been a World Record or an Olympic Record but with the medal contenders consistently running 47 in their pre-Olympic competitions, the bar was raised for Tokyo 2020. The 3 top spots were won by Karsten Warholm (Norway) who set a new World Record and Olympic Record with a blistering time of 45.94 followed by Benjamin Rai (USA) 46.17 and Alison do Santos (Brazil) for the bronze with a time of 46.72.

“What you saw today was the epitome of greatness with the world’s top 3 hurdlers and I am grateful that my performance was enough to get me in the top four to cross the line,” said McMaster. “These guys are not the average runners anymore and I will be aiming to get to their level.”

McMaster, who was racing after 2 weeks of treatment on his right quad which he tweaked at the Diamond League race in Sweden, was the first male athlete of the territory and second national athlete to advance to an Olympic final. He is also the first athlete to win individual event heats at the Olympics. His time is an OECS, Caribbean and Central American record.

Chantel Malone of Team British Virgin Islands competes in the Women’s Long Jump Final on day eleven of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on August 03, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

Chantel Malone, who is the BVI’s first Olympic long jump competitor was the territory’s first athlete to advance to the finals when she jumped a distance of 6.82 in the Qualifier round. She closed out her first Olympic appearance with a mark of 6.50 in her third attempt falling short of her expectations and abilities.

“I am very disappointed with my result,” said Malone. “My intention was to go out there and at least execute and I didn’t. Nonetheless, I am grateful for the experience and being able to compete as a finalist at the Olympics. I am going to do what I need to do in order to stay on my A game and be able to compete and get on the podium.”

Elinah Phillip, the 50m freestyle swimmer, had concluded her second Olympic appearance on July 30 after she set a new National Record and PB with a non-advancing time of 25.74 to place 2nd in her heat of the qualifying round. The result positioned her 34/81 in the 50 Free and identified her as the top female Caribbean athlete in the event.

Kyron McMaster qualifies for the 400m Hurdles finals at Tokyo 2020

Embed from Getty Images

Adding to the exciting action of the day on August 1, Kyron McMaster joined teammate, long jumper Chantel Malone in making history when he won his heat in the 400m hurdles semifinals with a time of 48.26 to automatically qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic event finals.

“I got to the warm-up track ahead of the race and just zoned in and went through the normal routine. Coach Lennox and I had agreed that once I got to the race the plan was solely to run to get into the finals rather than to try and run hard, and we accomplished that goal. Now it’s just to rest and get the body tuned up and get ready for the finals,” said McMaster.

McMaster became the first male athlete of the territory and second national athlete to advance to an Olympic final after Malone’s performance earlier in the day. He is also the first athlete to win individual event heats at the Olympics.

“The goal is not finished just yet,” said McMaster. “We are on the homestretch and it’s just to complete the race by getting on the line and giving my best!”

The BVI delegation, which includes Ephraim Penn, President of the BVI Olympic Committee, Lloyd Black, Secretary General, Tahesia Harrigan-Scott, Chef de Mission, Team Coach Winston Potter and McMaster’s personal Coach Lennox Graham were in the stands to watch the semi-finals.

“While we were not surprised to see Kyron cross the line first, we were no less excited about the result. Kyron is a fighter and there is no way that he would not have done whatever he needed to do to make it into the finals. We are very proud of his success,” said Penn. “To have athletes competing in the finals at an Olympic Games is a plan that has been in the making since the BVIOC’s Quadrennial goals of 2012 and to witness it happening at Tokyo 2020 with 2 of our successful senior track and field athletes who are Olympic Scholarship recipients is very thrilling and we can’t wait to watch their closing performances.”

The 400m hurdles finals takes place on Tuesday, August 3 at 12:20pm JST (11:20pm, Monday, August 2 BVI time) when McMaster will race in lane 4 against the world’s top 3 hurdlers including world record holder Karsten Warholm (Norway), Rai Benjamin (USA) and Alison dos Santos (Brazil).

Dr. the Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley, MHA. Deputy Premier Minister for Education, Culture, Youth Affairs, Fisheries and Agriculture arrived into Japan a day before the finals to witness the historic occasion.

McMaster’s Olympic debut at Tokyo 2020 was preceded with a short but successful season where he set a new National Record and PB when he ran a time of 47.50 at the USA Track and Field Golden Games, Walnut, California in May 2021.

A two-times Diamond League Champion and ranked number 4 by World Athletics, McMaster made major history for the BVI when he won the Territory’s first Commonwealth Games medal when he was 21 years old with a 48.25 first-place finish at the Gold Coast 2018 Games in Australia. He is also set new event records for the Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games at Barranquilla 2018 and for the North American Central American and Caribbean (NACAC) Championships at Toronto 2018.

Malone, who secured her spot in the long jump finals with an automatic qualifying mark of 6.82m in the Qualifying round, will also compete on Tuesday, August 3 at 10:50am (9:50pm Monday, August 2 BVI time). Elinah Phillip, the 50m freestyle swimmer, wrapped up her 2nd Olympic appearance on July 30 after she set a new National Record and PB with a non-advancing time of 25.74 in her heat of the qualifying round. The result ranks her top female Caribbean athlete in the event.

Chantel Malone advances to long jump finals at Tokyo 2020

Chantel Malone after qualifying for the long jump finals on August 1 at the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games

Chantel Malone made history for the British Virgin Islands once more when she qualified for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games long jump finals with a distance of 6.82m achieved on her 3rd attempt at the Tokyo Olympic Stadium on Sunday, August 1.

“I’m excited and happy to be going into the finals with a 6.82- especially as I had to take some time off ahead of the Games to work on recovering from an injury that I sustained at a meet at the beginning of July,” said Malone. “Jumping an 82 was the reassurance I needed and is a testament to my growth as an athlete just because the old me would have folded after the first two bad jumps, but today, I reminded myself that it only takes one and to execute it.”

Malone became the first athlete of the territory to advance to an Olympic final.

“I may be the first athlete to make it to the finals but honestly, that’s always been the goal and to actually be on that podium. The goal is to execute and hopefully we will be good but it’s a tough field out there with a lot of automatic qualifiers, so I just have to bring my A-Game and stay focused.”

Ephraim Penn, President of the BVI Olympic Committee was watching the event from the Olympic Family tribune along with Secretary General Lloyd Black.

“We were so excited when Chantel not only qualified for the finals, but that she managed to hit a distance beyond the automatic qualifying mark of 6.75,” said Penn. “The BVIOC and family of National Federations congratulate Chantel and her coach, Dwight Phillips on this achievement and we are looking forward to Tuesday’s event and to cheering her on in support of the goal for a podium finish.”

Tokyo 2020 is Malone’s first Olympics which she qualified for when she leapt a distance of 7.08 at the Florida International “Pro Addition” International Track Meet, Miramar in March 2021. The mark was a new National Record and a Season and Personal Best for the athlete who is ranked number 8 by World Athletics.

Malone’s history-making flair was demonstrated when she won the BVI’s first PanAm Games medal when she took the gold at Lima 2019 with a leap of 6.68m.

The finals take place on Tuesday, August 3 at 10:50am (9:50pm, Monday, August 2 BVI time).

Kyron McMaster, will compete in the 400m hurdles semi-finals later today after he won his qualifying heat with a time of 48.79 on Friday, July 30. Elinah Phillip, the 50m freestyle swimmer, wrapped up her 2nd Olympic appearance on July 30 after she set a new National Record and PB with a non-advancing time of 25.74 in her heat of the qualifying round. The result ranks her top female Caribbean athlete in the event.