September 29, 2020

CIASA Announces 2015 CARIFTA National Junior Swim Team

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CARIFTA Team IIGrand Cayman, Cayman Islands, 25 February 2015: The Cayman Islands Amateur Swimming Association (CIASA) today announced the Junior Swimming Team which will travel to Barbados to compete in the XXX 2015 CARIFTA 50 Metre Pool and Open Water Swimming Championships, 4-7th April 2015.

In addition to rigorous training and meeting minimum qualification times, to be considered for selection, a swimmer must meet the following eligibility criteria:

1. Be a registered member of CIASA in good standing;
2. Have signed the 2014/2015 CIASA Representative Swim Team Agreement;
3. Have signed and agreed to Representative Team Protocols; and
4. Be between the ages of 11 – 17 as of 31 December 2014.

Swimmers have been training hard, as evidenced by the large number of CIASA, National and Club records which fell last weekend at the Cayma Islands National Swimming Championships.

Now, with the final qualifying events behind them the task before CARIFTA Head Coach Bailey Weathers and club coaches David Pursley and Caleb Miller was not an easy one.

Based on a review of qualifying times, athletes’ compliance with training and eligibility requirements, coaches made a recommendation to CIASA and the Team Roster was agreed and ratified by the CIASA Board of Directors on 24 February 2015. Bailey Weathers, CIASA’s Technical Director commented: “This has been already been an exciting season for so many Cayman Islands swimmers. We have seen an incredible amount of improvement and success; and we are expecting more great swims as well at CARIFTA.”

Swimmers who will represent the Cayman Islands at the XXX 2015 CARIFTA Swimming Championships are:
– Girls 11-12: Sabine Ellison (CBAC), Alison Jackson (SSC), Emily Link (CBAC), Zororo
Mutomba (SSC), Ria Plunkett (SSC) and Holly Stradling (CBAC).
– Boys 11-12: Jordan Crooks (SSC) and Zachary Moore (SSC)
– Girls 13-14: Samantha Bailey (SSC), Stefanie Boothe (SSC), Sarah Jackson (SSC) and
Ella Plunkett (SSC)

– Boys 13-14: John Bodden (SSC), Matthew Somerville (CBAC) and Eddie Weber
(CBAC)
– Girls 15-17: Lauren Hew (CBAC) and Catriona MacRae (SSC)
– Boys 15-17: Rory Barrett (CBAC), Jonathan Key (SSC), Iain McCallum (SSC) and Cole Morgan (SSC)

(Note: SSC – Stingray Swim Club and CBAC – Camana Bay Aquatic Club)

As is now the custom, the CARIFTA Squad will have a Training Camp which brings the athletes together as a team for pool training and team building. The Training Camp is in addition to the swimmers’ regular club training and focuses on common technical aspects of their swims such as starts, turns and relay changes.

Special thanks is extended to the Cayman Islands Government and Maples for their support every year which has helped make the position of Technical Director possible, a position which is largely credited with the recent upsurge in swimming in Cayman, including both learn-to-swim and competitive swimming.

CIASA is pleased to be able to provide much of the funding for this trip, from funds raised at the recent Dine and Splash with Olympians, raffle ticket sales and the upcoming First Annual CIASA golf tournament to be held on 27th February. However, travel to Barbados is quite an expensive proposition and with such a large team travelling, the team and parents will also be pulling together to raise additional funds for the trip. In addition to travel expenses, there will be additional costs for accommodations, meals and gear, so please – when you see a swimmer approaching with a raffle ticket book in hand – be generous.

Michael Lockwood, CIASA President; a competitive swimmer in his youth and now a masters swimmer, was delighted with the announcement of the team. “The CARIFTA 2015 qualification times were announced in September 2014, with the qualification process being tweaked just a little to acknowledge the increasing number of swimmers achieving the faster qualification times. This year swimmers were required to achieve a minimum of two (2) qualification times; previously, only one (1) time was required. This extra requirement notwithstanding, we have seen some outstanding results and this year CIASA is proud to announce a team of 21 swimmers will attend CARIFTA XXX.”

With a potential maximum team size of 32 swimmers the Cayman Islands team of 21 swimmers is a testament to the swimmers hard work and dedication; and with veteran CARIFTA swimmers such as Lauren Hew, Catriona MacRae, Cole Morgan and Iain McCallum on the team the three first time competitors (rookies) will have good mentors in their team mates.

“I would like to congratulate all of our swimmers,” commented the Hon. Minister of Sport, Osbourne Bodden. “Swimming requires incredible commitment, discipline and focus … and many early hours at the pool. I also want to thank our athletes’ parents for the support and often referenced ‘swim taxi service’ which they provide. On behalf of the Ministry of Sports and the Cayman Islands Government we wish you all success in Barbados.”

The CARIFTA Team travelling to Barbados will include Head Coach Bailey Weathers, and a, still to be confirmed, Assistant Team Manager.

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