Spencer among world’s best
It was gold and silver for St Lucia’s leading female high jumpers, following a recent competition at the Spec Towns Invitational in Athens, Georgia, USA. St Lucia’s world ranked high jumper and reigning Sports Woman of the Year Levern Donaline Spencer, continued from where she left off in the 2016 indoor season. The prolific high jumper began her outdoor season last Saturday, opening with a gold medal winning performance in the United States. Competing at the Spec Towns Invitational in Athens, Georgia, the Caribbean’s premiere female high jumper had a very impressive start to her outdoor season by clearing 1.92 metres (m) to clinch the gold medal.
Spencer, who opened her account at 1.83 m, required only four jumps on the day, to achieve her winning clearance of 1.92 m, a height which placed her in fifth position on the world’s 2016 outdoor list.
The soft spoken high jumper who last month placed fifth at the World Indoor Championships in Portland, Oregon and ended the 2016 indoor season with the sixth best jump in the world, had first time clearances at 1.83 m, and 1.89 m before clearing 1.92m on her second attempt. She then had one very good attempt at 1.96 m, before a nagging hamstring problem forced her to close shop for the day. At that stage she had already won the competition.
It was a good outing for St Lucians as compatriot Jeannelle Scheper who won the NCAA Championships last year, placed second on the day after first time clearances at 1.80 m and 1.83m and third time clearances at 1.75 m, 1.86 m and 1.89 m.
Both young ladies have already qualified for the 2016 Olympics in Rio.
Moto X Club in high gear
The St Lucia Moto X Club, recently held its second race of the 2016 motocross season at the Cul de Sac Track. Twenty riders participated in this exciting event. Races took place in the following five classes: Pewee Class, Junior Class, Class C, Class B and Class A. The riders came out and gave their very best, despite experiencing a few challenges with their bikes on race day.
The riders and their supporters anxiously awaited the end results after the various motos, in order to determine whether their position had improved, or whether there was a new leader at the head of the class.
In the Pewee Class, Kareem Louis became the new points leader. Rossi McLean held on to first place in the Junior Class. Tairyk Girard in Class C and Antonio Maynard in Class B, also maintained their first place standing.
In Class A deemed to be the biggest battle on race day, Daran Rosemond emerged victorious and as a result passed the previous first place points holder by one point.
The St Lucia Moto X Club thanked their sponsors of the 2016 motocross season for their support and for “Riding with the Movement.”
There is more moto x action this weekend, with the staging of the club’s third race Sunday afternoon from 1:00 pm on the Cul de Sac track.
French Capoeirista for Workshop
Pierre hails from our neighbour to the north, Martinique, where he practices with the Centro Cultural Capoeira Baiana under contre mestre Careca. Known in capoeira circles as ‘BBoy Ninja’, Pierre provides both youth and adult classes in his native land.
The schedule for the weekend is as follows:
Saturday November 29th, 2014
Rodney Heights Aquatic Center –
2:30 – 4:00 PM
Sunday November 30th, 2014
Fitness Freaks, Corinth -11:00 AM -1:00 PM
Fee: One session – $45
Both sessions – $60
For more information call 723-5059, email capoeira758@gmail or find us on Facebook.
Historic football – Title for Windjammer
Windjammer didn’t quite blow their opponents away, but nevertheless came away with a victory over Monchy to capture the Gros Islet District Representative Football Finals Sunday evening on the Gros Islet Playing Field.
After a scoreless first half, Monchy opened the scoring in the 77th minute with a goal from Miradad Soudine. Windjammer kept pressing for the tying goal and were rewarded in the 89th minute courtesy of Rannick Dubois.
The score remained 1-1 after regulation time had elapsed. In this case there was no extra time and the teams would know their fate by way of penalty kicks. It was close but in the end Windjammer prevailed 5-4 and emerged the new champions of the Gros Islet District Representative Football Competition.
For Windjammer manager Martinus Alexander, the victory was a momentous and historic occasion. In an interview following the game he said: “We feel good, we feel so supreme today knowing that we are a hotel team competing in the Gros Islet League and we created history today. Right now there are lots of other teams who would love to be in the finals today. We made it through and we are victorious.”
Trailing 1-0 in the second half, Alexander was confident his team would score. Just to be sure he told me “I was on my knees all the time praising the Almighty, asking the Almighty for one goal. I knew if we got it we would be victorious.”
Preceding the final was the third place playoff between Northern B and Police. Again goals were hard to come by and the score remained 0-0 after the first half of play.
Northern B got on the scoreboard early in the second half with a goal from Nicholas Lawrence. It turned out to be the game winner as Police were unable to get the equalizer.
The awards presentation took place following the finals. Taking part in the proceedings was district representative, Emma Hippolyte; president of the Gros Islet Football League, Shane Paul; a representative from Du Boulay’s Bottling Company Limited who received a special award and Gros Islet Football League public relations officer, Jennifer Gaston.
Following her brief remarks, the parliamentary representative had the distinct pleasure of presenting medals and the first place trophy to Windjammer.
Individual awards were also presented. Paul, in addition to being president of the league, also played for the Police Team and received the award for the most goals. The MVP of the tournament was Pessius Pollius of Windjammer.
The Gros Islet Football League thank all 16 teams which took part in the competition, sponsors and the massive crowd which turned out for the Finals. The League is working towards putting plans in place for the year 2015.
Like everybody else in particularly the Caribbean, I spent Sunday morning not in church (forgive me Dear Lord), but glued to my television set watching the World Twenty20 Cricket tournament. First it was the women’s final, where the West Indies Women defeated Australia in an entertaining match. Thought about going to a late morning mass to thank the Almighty for their victory. Instead, prayed at home for the men’s side who were up next against England in the final. Got the feeling my prayers would never be answered and was simply paying for my sins, especially when early in the match West Indies were something like 13 for three. That’s when Anthony DeBeauville from the Voice Publishing Company, happened to call me on a separate matter. By then I had already given up on the Windies. To his credit, Anthony kept insisting the West Indies would mount a serious comeback and win the match. They did just that, scoring 19 runs in the final over and the rest as they say is history. The remainder of my afternoon was spent at the Rodney Heights Aquatic Centre covering their annual swim meet, where our swimmers competed against other talented swimmers from the region. All in all it was a good weekend and can hardly wait to see what’s on the horizon for the coming week.
Digicel St Lucia Triathlon truly international in Every way
From an international perspective, the Second Annual Digicel Tri St Lucia International Triathlon held Saturday in and around picturesque Landings Resort, Pigeon Island and Rodney Bay was a success, attracting competitors from 15 different countries. However from a local standpoint, a lot more needs to be done to get St Lucians competing in this grueling event consisting of swimming, cycling and road running.
Race Director and Olympian Jamie Peterkin who played an active role in the event along with his dad David who is President of the St Lucia Triathlon Association, hit the nail on the head when he said during an interview: “One thing for sure, if we want to rival our neighbours Martinique we need to get more people involved in the sport. Neighbouring Martinique brought numbers 30 deep and we are still in the teens. Hopefully we can flip flop that, not for the sake of just having numbers but having interested people in those numbers.”
He went to say: “That will take a concerted effort not just from associations but from people taking the initiative to get out there and do something. I think it is important that you never say I can’t do something and just give it a try. No pun intended but that tri in triathlon goes a long way.”
Like Peterkin alluded to the Martiniquians dominated the event. Following are the results in the Ladies Dagger (200 m swim, 6.6km bike ride, 2.5km run). (3) Leopoldie Guylene, Martinique; (2) Aretha Cooper, Puerto Rico (1) Keely Brooks, England.
Mens division: (3) Peter Irvine, England; (2) Richard Gallimore (St Lucia); (1) David Marshall, England.
Ladies Results in the Pistol (750 metre swim, 13.2 km bike ride, 5km run)). (3) Jodie Albrow, England; (2) Tania Toussaint, Martinique; (1) Chloe Mazaloubeaud, Martinique.
Mens Division: (3) Jack Albrow, England; (2) Joncart Max, Martinique; (1) Zozime Krystan, Martinique.
There was also a relay prize in The Pistol consisting of two ladies and a man. Among them were St Lucians Lily Bergasse and Richard Monplaisir.
Ladies results in The Cutlass (1500m swim, 26.4km bike ride, 10km run. (3) Emma Payne, England; (2) Phoebe Sanders, England; (1) Mathilde Batailler, Martinique.
Mens division: (3) Franck Sylvestre, Martinique; (2) Stephane Marliere, Martinique; (1) Clement Briere, Martinique.
The Cutlass relay was won my Team Lipstick.
The adult races were followed by a children’s triathlon (five to nine years), aquathlon (eight to 15 years) and a junior paratri for pupils from a local special needs school involving a wheelchair push.
The invited guests at the prize giving which followed the event included permanent secretary and president of the St Lucia Olympic Committee, Fortuna Belrose; director of tourism, Louis Lewis; Digicel public relations and communications executive, Sergin Joseph-John Baptiste; marketing manager of First National Bank St Lucia Limitesd, Robert Fevriere and of course the two well-known celebrity ambassadors-Olympians from the United Kingdom Daley Thompson and Steve Cram.
During the prize giving ceremony, there was a special award, The Ollie Gobat Memorial, for the most impressive St Lucian performance of the day. It was presented by his parents Helen and Theo.
Before making the presentation Theo Gobat said: “This year we have introduced a little award in the name of our son Ollie, who probably many of you would know was murdered in April. Ollie was a great sportsman and I know he would have been very enthusiastic about the donation of this award. Ollie was schedule to go to the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in July. He got himself very fit for it and of course it was not to be. So from a great sportsman to another up and coming very good sportsman Niall Bergasse.
Niall was not present at the prize giving but a family member received the award on his behalf.
Commenting on this year’s Triathlon, event director of the Digicel St Lucia Triathlon, John Lunt said: “It was excellent. This is building on last year’s success and is probably even more successful. We had a greater number of athletes competing and a range of nationalities taking part. Everyone from Puerto Rico to Guadeloupe to Switzerland, Canada, USA, and Great Britain. The range of nations is far wider this year so the word is definitely getting out.”
When asked are you pleased with the local participation and organization Lunt replied: “There is still work to do as there always will be. I think we need to get more St Lucians engaged in it. It is their water, their beach, their roads they need to really embrace the event and have lots of fun with it.”
Easier said than done!
This Week's Issue
Athletes of the Week
Name: Darren Sammy and Johnson Charles
Never before has Sports and Health Inc named two individuals in the as the Athlete of the Week. We could not name one without the other as they are both St Lucian teammates on the victorious West Indies team that recently won the World Twenty20 in dramatic fashion over England. You must agree that Darren and Johnson and the rest of their teammates faced adversity before and even after their historic victory and defied the odds to be the first team to win the prestigious championship trophy not once but twice. As we congratulate the West Indies side especially Darren and Johnson let us not forget the West Indies Women team that won their version of the tournament after beating highly favored Australia in another thriller.