Final countdown to CARIFTA for local swimmers

| 19/03/2013

Ella Back Start (229x300).jpg(CIASA): Final preparations are in full swing for CARIFTA 2013 which starts in less than two weeks, on March 29th. Eighteen swimmers will be representing Cayman this year – with five athletes: Alex Dakers, Eddie Weber, Ella Plunkett, Kyle Fraser and Sarah Jackson making their CARIFTA debut; and two athletes: Geoffrey Butler and Kyle Fraser, making their final CARIFTA appearance. And for those reading carefully yes, Kyle will be competing at CARIFTA for both the first and last times this year. The CARIFTA Management and Coaching team, led by CIASA’s Technical Director Coach Ian Armiger is made up on Coach Katie Lambert and Coach Andy Copley and Team Managers Sandy Hew and Jeffrey Wight.

Two weeks ago the team received a presentation from Mr. James Myles, the Lead Doping Control Officer for the Cayman Islands in the Medical and Anti-doping Commission of the Cayman Islands Olympic Committee. With experience testing locally or in the Region, Mr. Myles uses his experience to present to local athletes as well so that they know what to expect when they are competing … he talked the athletes through the process, showed them a kit and stressed how important it is that if they are selected for random dope testing that they comply, but that they do so with a Team Manager with them and that they check the testing equipment to ensure that it is new and has not been tampered with.

Mr. Myles said this: “We at the Medical and Anti-Doping Commission of the Cayman Islands Olympic Committee are committed to keeping Cayman Islands National athletes dope free, we are dedicated to ensuring that all athletes, especially Caymanian athletes PLAY TRUE in all sports at all time. We feel that the earlier our aspiring elite athletes are exposed to the process the more comfortable their sporting careers will be and the doping control process will provide for them the confidence that they are competing on a level playing field and that their place in the world is TRUE.”

The athletes have also had a team building session where they got to know each other better – outside of the usual environment of swim training or school – and have had one of two CARIFTA Squad Training Sessions as well.

“These athletes all know each other and compete against each other routinely. The CARIFTA Squad Training sessions gives the athletes and coaches a chance to work together, and to focus on skills and techniques such as relay exchanges where timing is critical. Fast, efficient and accurate relay exchanges can win the race. Swimmers training together; getting better and better at judging exactly when the swimmer in the water will touch the wall is something which practice and familiarity makes better,” said Coach Ian Armiger, Cayman Swimming’s Technical Director.

“This is my first CARIFTA,” he continued. “I am looking forward to it, to really seeing what FastSwimming in the Caribbean Region at this level looks like so that we can work more strategically with our competitive swimmers in the future. We could not do this without our sponsors the Cayman Islands Government, Maples, Subway, Cayman Airways and CIASA and we are committed to representing the Cayman Islands with pride and honour while we are in Jamaica,” he finished.

The CARIFTA Swimming Squad trained at the Lions Aquatic Center last weekend and will be training at the Camana Bay Aquatic Center next weekend. They leave for Jamaica on Tuesday March 26th, will be training in the National Stadium Pool and continuing Team Building activities in the days leading up to the start of the competition on the 30th.

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