T&T’s George Bovell III resumed his competitive preparations for this year’s Rio Olympic Games with bronze and fourth-place finish at the Sixth Trofeo Citta di Milan Swimming Championship, in Milan, Italy, yesterday.

Competing in the tenth and final Time Trial heat, the 32-year-old Bovell, an Olympic, World Short Course and Long Course Championship bronze medal winner, touched the wall in 22.74 seconds from lane four to trail Italians Luca Dotto (22.18), who was in lane three, and Federico Bocchia (22.71)m who swam from lane six.

Host swimmers Marco Orsi (22.87) and Lucio Spadaro (23.05) were fourth and fifth, respectively, while Russain Aleksandr Kliukin (23.07) ended sixth, and Italy’s Giuseppe Guttuso (23.14) seventh, all from heat ten, while Andrea Vergani (23.23), the winner of heat nine, completed the top eight.
In the 100m freestyle, Dotto won gold in 48.77 ahead of countrymen Filipo Magnini (49.37) and Orsi (49.75).

Also yesterday, Bovell III, a four-time Olympian, was fourth in the men’s 50m breaststroke with a time of 28.50, which was the third fastest in the tenth and final heat from lane five.

Italian duo, Fabio Scozzoli (27.82) and Andrea Toniato (27.94) were first and second in the tenth heat from lanes two and four, respectively, and also took gold and silver overall, while heat nine winner, Ioannis Karpouzlis, who lined up in lane four, was third in 28.26.

The other top eight finishers were Italians, Flavio Bizzari (28.53), Lorenzo Antonelli and Marco Orsi, both with a time of 28.54, and Luca Pizzini, in 28.75

Scozzoli also won the 100m breaststroke in one minute, 01.48 seconds ahead of Karpouzlis (1:02.10) and Toniato (1:02.56).

Thompson leads Carifta swimmers to Martinique
Jeron Thompson will lead this country’s quest for team honours at the 31st Carifta Swimming Championship in Martinique when a 33-member team and officials depart today from Piarco International Airport.

Thompson, the reigning T&T Olympic Committee and First Citizens Junior ‘Male Athlete of the Year’, the most experienced member of the swimming team and most decorated swimmer in the absence of USA-based Amira Pilgrim and Vrisnelit Faure, who have both opted out of the squad due to separate reasons.

Last year, T&T ended third overall with 494.5 points, and 38 medals, 12 gold, 13 silver, and 13 bronze and led by Thompson who six medals last year (one gold, four silver and one bronze) in the 13-14 boys, the local squad is hoping to claim its first team title since 2010 when they won 94 medals (46 gold, 31 silver, 17 bronze) in Kingston, Jamaica.

T&T will also be represented by an 11-member Open Water swim team led by Christian Marsden. However, three of those members are also on the swim team which departs today, while the rest will travel to Martinique on Thursday.

Earlier this week, the Amateur Swimming Association of T&T (ASATT) met this week with officials of the Sports Company of T&T (SporTT) and discussed matters pertaining to the management of state funds allocated for this country’s participation at the Carifta Swimming Championships in Martinique from March 22-26, 2016.

Last week, following the announcement of the Carifta Swimming team, most of the parents expressed their displeasure when ASATT requested a TT$3,000 contribution from athletes selected for the Carifta team, citing a need to supplement its funding for future tournaments.

However, as one of the National Governing Bodies (NGBs) under SporTT’s purview, the state company raised a concern regarding ASATT’s request, given that all the costs associated with the team’s participation were being met by SporTT.

Following the meeting it was agreed that the $3,000 contribution requirement be withdrawn and that athletes who had already made the payment would be fully reimbursed.

Looking ahead to the next tournament—CISC Swimming Championships—in Bahamas from 16-19 June, it was agreed that SporTT would cover the cost of athletes who have achieved the ‘A’ qualifying standard (podium/final time) in light of ASATT’s limited remaining state allocation for the financial year.

Swimmers who have attained the “B” qualifying standard (minimum qualification time) could choose to attend at their own expense.

However, should the “B” standard athletes medal in their events, their expenses would be reimbursed. It was also agreed that ASATT would review and determine the optimal use of their subvention balance in relation to contingent sizes for the rest of the financial year.

Further, to mitigate against future shortfalls, SporTT’s Business Development Unit intends to work alongside the swimming body to attract private sector funding and sponsorship deals to supplement the annual subvention.

T&T Carifta swim team

Girls: 11-12: Adriana Gooding, Regan Allen, Terri Yates, Naomi Patterson, Sierra Reis, Victoria Gillette, De Nicha Lewis
13-14: Danielle Williams, Deshor Edwards, Jada Chai, Jada Chatoor, Jahmia Harley, Sabrina David, Chisara Santana
15-17: Ornella Walker, Ariel Cape, Racine Ross, Aliyah Noel, Shania David, Teresa Otero
Boys: 11-12: Malik Nelson, Riquelio Joseph, Johan-Matthew Matamoro, Marquise Nelson.
13-14: Luke Gillette
15-17: Justin Samlalsingh, Aidan Goin, Emil Goin, Kael Yorke, Christian Marsden, Graham Chatoor, Jeron Thompson, Dario Omiss.
T&T Carifta Open Water team:
Girls: 14-15: Chisara Santana, Shahlaa Marchand, Raven Renee-Toney.
16-18: Teresa Otero, Mia Otero.
Boys: 14-15: Gabriel Bynoe, Sebastian Marchand, William Reyes
16-18: Christian Marsden, Josiah Parag, Aaron Acres.