9 athletes to represent Virgin Islands in 3 sports at San Salvador 2023 CAC Games

The British Virgin Islands Olympic Committee (BVIOC) has confirmed that 9 athletes from 3 sports will represent the Virgin Islands at the 24th Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games in San Salvador, El Salvador from June 23 – July 8, 2023.
The team comprising 4 track and 3 field athletes, 1 sailor and 1 archer will arrive in El Salvador between June 22 and July 1 ahead of their events. Chef de Mission, Gloria Fahie arrives in San Salvador on June 21 ahead of the athletes in preparation for their arrival. BVIOC President Ephraim Penn is in San Salvador to attend the Centro Caribe Sport AGM before the Opening Ceremony.
“This year’s CAC Games are seen as an important qualifying and ranking opportunity for athletes from all sports we can expect to see some tough competition,” said President Penn. “It will be the first time that archery will be represented at these Games and the second time for sailing since 1993 in Ponce, Puerto Rico. Athletics has seen representation since the VI’s first participation in the CACs in 1982 and has included softball, squash, triathlon and cycling. This historic achievement for archery is a promising trajectory for the development of different sports in the Territory and brings to fruition one of the BVIOC’s missions for this quadrennial to have more sports compete at major Games.”
Laser sailor Thad Lettsome, competing in the ILCA 7 men’s single person dinghy event, is the first of the VI’s team to compete when the sailing events start on Saturday, June 24 at Lake Ilpongo. Lettsome is also selected to be the flag bearer at the Opening Ceremony on Friday, June 23.
Archer Ritseeniyah Georges will compete in the Women’s Compound Individual starting Sunday, July 2 at 9:00am at the Polígono de Tiro con Arco Ciudad Merliot.
Track athletes include Rikkoi Brathwaite in the 100m semi-finals starting at 5:00pm and Beyonce Defreitas in the 100m semi-finals starting at 5:30pm on Monday, July 3; Deya Erickson in the 100m hurdles semi-finals starting at 5:45pm, Tuesday, July 4; Jaleel Croal in the 200m semi-finals starting at 5:00pm and Beyonce Defreitas in the 200m semi-finals starting at 5:30pm on Wednesday, July 5.
The all-men field athletes comprise Olympian Eldred Henry and twins Djimon and Diamante Gumbs. Henry and Djimon Gumbs will compete in the shot put final on Monday, July 3 starting at 5:25pm. Djimon and Diamante Gumbs will compete in the discus final on Wednesday, July 5 starting at 6:55pm.
While San Salvador 2023 will be the first CAC Games for 7 of the athletes, it will be the second appearance for Henry, who won the territory’s first shot put medal in a CAC games when he placed 3rd with a distance of 20.18m at Barranquilla 2018 and for Erickson who made her debut at the same games in the 100m hurdles.
In addition to the Chef de Mission Gloria Fahie and President Penn, the VI delegation to San Salvador 2023 includes Erwin “Redz” Telemaque (athletics coach), Winnette Lawrence (archery coach), Xavier Buxo (archery technician), Chris Watters (sailing coach) and Chester James (Physiotherapist).
The VI will be one of 37 countries represented at the CAC Games. The games, under the auspices of Centro Caribe Sports, will feature 57 disciplines in 37 sports taking place over 16 days. The Games, under the theme “It’s time to transcend”, will be broadcast live on the Centro Caribe Sports Channel on YouTube.
The CAC Games are the oldest continuous running regional games dating back to 1926. Held every four years, the Games typically host competitors from countries in Central America, the Caribbean, Mexico, Bermuda and the South American countries of Suriname, Guyana, Colombia and Venezuela. The San Salvador 2023 Games were originally slated to be held in Panama in 2022. 30 sports will take place in El Salvador and 7 will take place in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.
The CAC Games are considered the starting point of international competition for athletes from the region who are seeking to represent their countries at the Olympic level. They are designed to provide a step between sub-CAC region Games held the first year following a Summer Olympics and the Pan American Games, which are held before the Summer Olympic. The next Pan American Games are slated to take place in Santiago, Chile October 20 – November 5, 2023.

More information on the San Salvador 2023 Games can be found on their website.

Follow the BVIOC page on FaceBook for regular updates and results.

Virgin Islands Archery Association’s World Record Holder and Olympian Archers visit – Sunday, August 21, 2022

The Virgin Islands benefited from a visit by World Record holder in Compound Archery, Recurve and Compound, Coach Raymond Michael Gerard (better known as Mike) of St. Thomas, USVI, and Olympian and Archery Coach Tatyana Muntyan of St. Thomas, USVI.

The coaches came through the initial invitation of Virgin Islands Archery Federation (VIAF) in St. Thomas, USVI, who graciously extended the invitation to us in the Virgin Islands.

Mike has over 44 years of experience in the sport – shooting competitively since he was 14 years old – and now shares his love for the sport through coaching. He has won every major US Championship in Indoor, Field and Target Archery, except for 3D Archery. Currently he has the World Record for the youngest Archer that shot indoors and which he accomplished when he was 14 years old with a score of 598 out of 600. The closest anyone has gotten was a score of 596. He has trained several Junior Olympic Archery Olympians and Junior World team members. He serves on the National Coaches’ Development Committee and the Board of Justice of USA Archery. He has written articles for several magazines and has given numerous seminars on archery.

Tatyana came with a wealth of 35 years of experience in various disciplines in Archery and has shot at national tournaments in the US since 2015 and was part of the squad’s Olympic trials for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. World Archery Championships Silver Medalist, 2-times Individual Gold Medalist in Indoor Archery, Bronze Medalist in individual and teams in Indoor Archery and Silver Medalist in Field Archery. She has worked with National teams in the Ukraine, Romania, and France along with individual archers around the world.

Mike shared with the Compound Archers the information required for their discipline whilst Tatyana shared with the Recurve Archers the knowledge needed for their discipline, as both have different mechanisms that rely on completely different aspects of the sport.

VIAA President and Archery Coach Patrick Smith re-iterated a few key messages imparted by the two visiting Coaches including “Know your equipment”.

Coach Dwayne Donovan mentioned that he liked hearing about “magnetic resonance” and that to “tune into your body and not the people around you” were key lessons to be learned.

When the team of younger Archers were asked about their greatest take away, Shile David mentioned that “Coach Tatyana’s approach methods, specifically for warm up before, during and after along with the Archer’s form and shot process” really stood out.

Both visiting coaches were asked about their experience of working with the Archers in the BVI.

Tatyana responded by saying “It was amazing to practice for all of us. All of the people that I met, talked to, and practiced with, they are positive, they are coachable and teachable. That is very, very important! Coach Patrick and all of you did a great job to have that level of Archery in the BVI. I respect that very much.

Mike mentioned that “coming to the BVI was a fantastic experience. It took no time to see that the archers are “all in” with regards to enjoyment and growth in their abilities. Sky is the limit as a result!”

When asked, “What did you see as the greatest challenges and Strengths?”
Mike stated “the greatest strength is the commitment from both coaches and athletes and the respect shared throughout the team and the patience I witnessed. Everyone seems to enjoy each other. Low friction is huge and allows for unrestricted progress.”

“The biggest challenge is access to the equipment and information you need. Because you work harder for that, than many, the value is higher and appreciated. I believe you are doing well so far and on the right track.

Tatyana mentioned that “As you can see in the videos and pictures that I took during our 1-day practice, all the archers made a great form transformation in a short time. All the archers’ form transformation is possible because of my systematic training method that was developed by me from the decades of experience in archery as an Olympian, pro archer, and National level coach.”

They were asked “What goal would you like to see achieved by the team?”
Mike said that it “would be great to set up a monthly video conference with the team to discuss needs, challenges, and triumphs. The next move is to get the ability to compete remotely with other teams. This will inspire your inner greatness! It will add value to your hard work.”

The Archery team has its largest delegation to date gearing up to compete in the Caribbean Developmental Championships from September 6 through 8 and the CAC Games Qualifier from September 5 through 12, both in Santo Domingo, so this training was timely.

Over $12k in scholarships awarded at 2022 National Archery in the Schools Programme (NASP) Tournament

The Virgin Islands Archery Association (VIAA) hosted the National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) Nationals on May 20, 2022 at the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College. 22 students took part representing 2 schools – the Ciboney Center for Excellence in Virgin Gorda and Cedar International on Tortola. 

The VIAA was able give $12,200.00 in scholarship proceeds, trophies, plaques and medallions. Two prize bows were awarded to the Top Boy and the Top Girl. To date, the program has awarded $52,200.00 in scholarship monies.


PlacementNameSchoolAmount won
1st Place & Top GirlEva FoxCiboney Center$ 2,160.00
2nd PlaceEva Carey Cedar International$ 1,620.00
3rd PlaceAva GhiorseCedar International$ 730.00
4th PlaceEmily TupperCedar International$ 525.00
5th PlaceKhalia SergeantCedar International$ 465.00


PlacementNameSchoolAmount won
1st Place & Top BoyValentin ZahrebelnyjCiboney Center$ 2,160.00
2nd PlaceBenjamin MooreCiboney Center$ 1,620.00
3rd PlaceSheylon BrownCiboney Center$ 730.00
4th PlaceNicholas MooreCiboney Center$ 525.00
5th PlaceNoah CottreauCedar International$ 465.00

Eva Fox, an archer of two years who won Top Girl, was interviewed by Dean the Sportsman Greenaway. She stated that she “was surprised to win because these other girls are really good and I think they are awesome. I didn’t expect to be walking away with $2,160!” Eva attributed her success to the support from her mother, coach and friends and summed up her experience as “fun and I got to meet new people.”

When Eva Carey, who secured 2nd place, was interviewed, she also expressed her surprise “because everyone here is really amazing that I thought I would not do this well.” When asked what helped her to get second place, she said, “I think my coaches, my friends to support me but also my mentality. I just kept thinking, I can do this, I can do this and I think that really helped.” Eva plans to compete again next year.

Ava Ghiorse, a Cedar School student who took up the sport a year ago secured 3rd place and observed that “everyone had really good ability with the bow, so I was just not expecting to win a prize.”

This year’s Top Boy, Valentin Zahrebelnyj from Ciboney, defended his 2021 title although it was an unexpected win as he thought that teammate Benjamin Moore would get it. “I think he deserves it a lot because he worked hard for it also,” said Valentin who has been an archer for 3 years. “It was a pretty difficult win as there were some pretty good people on the field and putting up some pretty good numbers out there.”

Benjamin Moore was interviewed next and noted that his 2nd spot finish was an improvement on the last NASP tournament. He commented that the $1,620 prize was unexpected and that “it is a lot of money for my age at least.” 

Sheylon Brown finished in 3rd place and said that “for me it is a shock, because I did not do so well last time. I finished 5th place and I am happy I got the chance to win scholarship money.”

This year had an additional bonus element to it, with a lucky scholarship dip for four students in the amount of $300 each. The recipients were Emily Tupper of Cedar, Noah Fox from Ciboney, Ava Ghiorse from Cedar and Valentin Zahrebelnyj from Ciboney.

The NASP National Coordinator, Ritseeniyah Georges, was interviewed by Dean the Sportsman Greenaway who inquired why the public schools did not participate and why only two schools competed in this year’s event. Ms. Georges explained that the VIAA can only only work with the schools which are utilizing the program as part of their in-school PE curriculum.

“Once Archery is taught within a school system, that school becomes eligible to compete in the NASP National Tournament,” said Ms. Georges. “This program is geared toward encouraging the archers to continue education after their high school graduation.” 

In addition to Ciboney Educational Center in Virgin Gorda and Cedar International School the other schools which have previously participated in the programme are the Elmore Stoutt High School, VI School of Technical Studies and the Bregado Flax Secondary School in Virgin Gorda. 

The VIAA thanks its annual sponsors of NASP – Kobre & Kim (BVI) LP and Caribbean Security – whose continued support provides funding for the scholarships. 

The VIAA invites community support of its multi-talented youths in pursuit of a tertiary education by contacting the association through its website www.archeryvi.org

VI Athletes to represent the territory at the 2019 Caribbean Developmental Championships (CDC)

A team of 11 persons from the Virgin Islands Archery Association will be departing the territory on June 27, 2019 to compete in the III Annual Caribbean Developmental Championships (CDC), which will take place from June 28 through June 30, 2019 in Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic.

This is the largest delegation to compete in these championships to date, as the sport continues to recover from the events of 2017. The delegation includes national coaches Patrick Smith, Ritseeniyah Georges, and Winnette Lawrence and competitors, Jaydian Fahie (Recurve) and Kasadiyah Baird (Recurve) Pre-cub women, Creightlee Brewley (Recurve) and K’Maury Pickering (Compound) Cub Men, Kendise Brewley (Compound) Cadet Women, Jahmeel Jones (Compound) Men, Javlyn Frett (Recurve) Women, and K’Mouy Pickering (Compound) Junior Men.

The CDC, which had its début in Puerto Rico in February 2017, was created by World Archery to be used as a stepping stone to springboard athletes from beginner and intermediate level into the world ranking events. It inspires and prepares athletes to take part in the sport and get a feel for international competition. The championships will bring together athletes from countries including the Bahamas, the Virgin Islands (UK), Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, St. Kitts & Nevis, and Trinidad & Tobago

Patrick Smith, National Head Coach and President on his expectations of the team in Santo Domingo, stated that he wants “all gold medals and records and for the kids to meet some friends that they will love and cherish forever.”

Miss Javlyn Frett, who will be competing for the first time regionally, hopes “to accomplish an 8.0 average at the competition” while the youngest junior athletes, Kasadiyah Baird and Jaydian Fahie both stated that they are “very nervous”

The board of Governors of the VIAA expressed special thanks to the BVI Olympic Committee for their financial contribution to the tournament, and to all parents and sponsors who dug deep into their purses to support the athletes and make participation of this event possible.

VI teams bring home medals from 1st Caribbean Cup Archery Tournament

By Virgin Islands Archery Association

The first Virgin Islands JOAD (Junior Olympic Archery Development) Archery Team opens season with the 1st Caribbean Cup Archery Tournament in Manati, Puerto Rico. Photo: CM Farrington/VIAA

The first Virgin Islands JOAD (Junior Olympic Archery Development) Archery Team along with two of the VI Women’s Compound Archery Team opens season with the 1st Caribbean Cup Archery Tournament in Manati, Puerto Rico. With high spirits after the Official Practice on Sunday 30th of April, 2015. The team took part in qualifications with much anticipation. This World Archery International Event included competitors from 8 countries and the World ranking event included top archers from 10 countries including Korea, Great Britain and the US.

“This competition was a very good experience full of fun and frustration”. Says Winnette Lawrence competing in the Compounds Women Division. “I am not used to the weather conditions we shot in. There was wind, rain and slush from the mud caused by the rain. It was a bit tiring but overall it was a great experience shooting on the line with so many different people from so many countries. We are competing on the same field with Olympic Athletes like, Sara Lopez of Columbia and Para Athlete Andre Shelby, the first black Olympic archer to ever win a gold medal. This was the first outdoor and international tournament of the year and we came here for training before the tournament.”

At the end of qualifications our VI team are in the following positions:

Recurve Junior Men
Jahmaine Liburd – 2nd place –Total Points 436
Adriel Singh – 3rd place – Total Points 382

Recurve Junior Women
Khristie Latchman – 1st Place – Total Points 436

Compound Men
D’Moi Martin – 2nd Place – Total Points 491

Compound Cadet Women
Shania Daigneault – 1st Place – Total Points 588

Womens Team
Compound Women Ritseeniyah Georges – 1st Place – Total Points 639
Winnette Lawrence – 2nd Place – Total Points 542

The Eliminations (Medal Rounds) will be televised and will be held on Thursday for the Caribbean Championships.

There are very few sports in the world that allow the world’s best to compete on the target with someone fairly new. Tournaments in archery are often without barriers and enable friendships between individuals from all walks of life and our VI youth are experiencing this great opportunity.

Duff & Daigeault are National Archery in the School Programme Nationals Champions

Source: VINO

Elmore Stoutt High School was named team champion of the first National Archery in Schools Nationals, on Saturday April 15, 2017. Photo: Charlie E. Jackson/VINO

Elmore Stoutt High School was named team champion of the first National Archery in Schools Nationals, on Saturday April 15, 2017. Photo: Charlie E. Jackson/VINO

After a day of intense action and focus among almost 50 young boys and girls, both Rayne Duff and Shania Daigneault were crowned champions of the first National Archery in the School Programme (NASP) Nationals on Saturday April 15, 2017.

The pair from Cedar School and Elmore Stoutt High School respectively also took home a $3,000 scholarship and both had earlier claimed a new Bow as a prize for being top Middle School Boy and Top High School Girl.

Winning $350 as top school was the Elmore Stoutt High School team, the majority of whom train and practice at Y.E.P.

Top Elementary Female, winning a Bow, was Tyara Winter, while top boy in the same category was Sebbie Santos.

Top Middle School Female was Hailey Chomiak, whilst Top High School Boy was D’Moi Martin.

Ritseeniyah Georges, who is Vice President of the National Archery Association and the In Schools Archery Programme Coordinator, was impressed with the way the day had gone. “Everyone is improving a lot, they were out practicing all week for this and even though some were nervous they managed to stay focused and all did very well. The two overall winners are very talented and deserved to come out on top.”

Some of the archers showed a lot of natural talent, but in the end, it was those who dedicated themselves to practice that rose to be champions.

In terms of the overall development programme, everything is on track, according to Georges. “Currently we are on target, because all the schools that are in the programme took part today. The other schools are keen and just waiting for the Association to get the funding and equipment to expand further. We have annual sponsors such as the Department of Youth Affairs, Kobre and Kim, Caribbean Securities, Morrell, Rep BVI and Aaron Rentals.”

Next up for the young archers is a trip for the Junior National team to compete against five other countries, with the host country yet to be announced.