Cayman Islands swimming technical director Bailey Weathers is set to leave the post next week.
Weathers, who served in the position for nearly seven years, said he plans to move back to the US.
“My wife and I really planned to go back, be around our grandkids, our children and be there for family,” Weathers told the Cayman Compass. “We own a home in Michigan. We’ve been planning to go back there. We delayed it a few months [due to COVID-19] but we don’t really want to put our lives on hold.”
The plan all along, he said, was to step down following the 2020 Olympics, in Tokyo. The Games were cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, however, throwing those plans into flux.
Cayman Islands Aquatic Sports Association leaders advertised the post earlier this year but recruitment for Weathers’ replacement was slowed by the pandemic as well, CIASA president Stephen Broadbelt said.
While Weathers will be leaving island next week, he will continue to assist CIASA until a full-time replacement is found.
“In a perfect world, we’ll have someone in place around the first of the year but I’m not sure it’s realistic,” Weathers said, adding that he will focus on helping CIASA with organisation and planning for international competitions.
It’s unclear at this point when international competition will resume for Cayman’s athletes. The Islands Games, scheduled for 2021 in Guernsey, were recently postponed.
It’s also not certain whether the CARIFTA Swimming Championships will take place next year.
Weathers said he’s proud of Cayman’s swimming accomplishments during his time at the helm.
“Everything we’ve done since I’ve been here is not necessarily because of me. I’ve been involved in a lot of stuff but a lot of people put in a lot of work,” Weathers said.
“I do think we’ve done well competitively. We haven’t produced another Brett Fraser but we’ve got a lot of kids that are right at that level and I think we’ve got a few kids right now that will surpass Brett and Shaune (Fraser) internationally.”
CIASA also launched artistic swimming and a water polo team during Weathers’ tenure.
Weathers by the numbers
Accomplishments since 2013
- 2 Olympic swimmers
- 4 World championships swimmers
- Record 56 medals at 2019 CARIFTA championships
- 176 total CARIFTA medals won