Guyana and Barbados, each armed with a reigning champion, are confident going into the 48th annual CARIFTA Games, scheduled for Easter weekend, April 20-22, at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex. This will be the third time for the Cayman Islands to host the event, which will attract more than 500 athletes from 27 countries.
In 2018, Guyana won one gold, one silver and seven bronze medals. This year the team is depending heavily on its overseas athletes to bring them glory, specifically Claudrice McKoy and Joanna Archer, both attending Munro College, and long jumper Chantoba Bright, who is studying at University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP).
Bright, who is the defending U20 long jump champion, will be among the favourites to win long and triple jump medals. This will be her final year participating in the Games and the seven-time CARIFTA medallist said she is excited because she’s in great shape and is ready to defend her long jump title.
“My training is also preparing me to take the triple crown this year. I expect to go out there and execute and bring home the double gold in the long and triple jump girls U20,” said Bright, who also won bronze in the triple jump in 2018. “CARIFTA is a big deal for me as well as my country. We take pride and joy in participating, and look forward to competing annually, so our athletes and coaches work hard to prepare for the Games. For me, CARIFTA this year is all about executing and achieving the goals I’ve been working on for the last two years which is winning the long and triple jump event, having fun and ending my final year with a bang.”
South American youth gold medallist Deshana Skeete and sprinter Loneil Marks are also expected to add to Guyana’s medal tally. Meanwhile, 17 Guyana-based athletes have secured qualifying marks and are expected to accompany McKoy, Archer and Bright to Cayman.
CARIFTA tickets are now on sale for as low as $10. For more information about CARIFTA Cayman 2019 and to purchase tickets visit www.caymancarifta2019.ky.