Machel Cedenio retained his Carifta Games boys’ Under-20 400 metres title with the easiest of victories at the Stade P. Aliker, in Fort de France, Martinique, late yesterday.
Involved in a tight finish in Nassau, Bahamas, last year, Cedenio ensured there would be no anxious moments for the Trinidad and Tobago supporters, romping to victory in 45.95 seconds, for a huge cushion on silver medallist Nathon Allen (46.97) of Jamaica.
It was another T&T quartermiler who made the early running. Out in lane seven, Asa Guevara gave his heart and was well-placed for precious metal coming into the home straight. Cedenio, though, was strongest in the last quarter of the race.
Guevara, however, had the satisfaction of bagging bronze in 47.35.
“I feel good,” Cedenio declared, after the final, “making my country proud. This is my last Carifta so I just came here to have fun. I probably would have gone harder if there was a little more competition, but I am satisfied with my run.”
Cedenio opened the defence of his title with victory in the second of two qualifying heats, earlier in the day. He got home in 47.26 seconds to finish well ahead of Jamaican Ivan Henry (47.93).
Guevara was faster than Cedenio, copping third spot in the opening heat in 47.12, earning his championship race lane as a “fastest loser”.
Competing for the first time in two years in T&T colours, England-based Nicholas Landeau returned to national duty in style, seizing silver in the boys’ Under-20 1500m.
Landeau carried the pace in the first half of the race, making a bold front-running bid for gold. But Jamaican Chadoye Dawson seized control in the latter stages of the race.
Determined to get the gold, Landeau battled to line, getting home in three minutes, 58.27 seconds. Dawson, though, was faster, stopping the clock at 3:56.93 to clinch the title. Bronze went to Bermuda’s Dage Minors in 3:58.39.
Though satisfied to celebrate his T&T comeback with a podium finish, Landeau told the Express he was disappointed with how the race unfolded in the last 200 metres. He said he was elbowed by the eventual winner, and also claimed that Dawson stepped off the track.
Ayoka Cummings (56.83) and Shirnell Ettienne (58.10) were fourth and seventh, respectively, in the girls’ under-20 400m final.
And in the boys’ Under-18 400m championship race, Kashief King was eighth in 50.38 seconds.
After press time, last night, T&T sprinter Jonathan Farinha faced the starter in the boys’ Under-20 100m final.
In the semi-final round, Farinha finished third in heat three in a wind-assisted 10.30 seconds to advance to the final as a “fastest loser”. Jamaica’s Jevaughn Minzie won the heat in 10.14 to qualify fastest.
A notable non-starter in the century was Anguillan Zharnel Hughes. The reigning champion is nursing an injury and did not defend his title.
Kayelle Clarke earned automatic qualification for the girls’ Under-20 100m final when she finished second in the second qualifying heat in a wind-aided 11.44 seconds. Aaliyah Telesford was third in the opening heat in a windy 11.86, progressing to the championship race as a “fastest loser”.
Both Adell Colthrust and Akanni Hislop advanced to the boys’ Under-18 100m final via the “fastest loser” route. Hislop finished second in heat four in a wind-assisted 10.62 seconds, while Colthrust clocked a windy 10.70 for second spot in heat two.
Chelsea James secured silver in the girls’ Under-18 discus during the morning session. The T&T field athlete threw 43.53 metres, forcing Jamaica’s Devia Brown (43.31m) to settle for bronze. Gold went to another Jamaican, Janet Fullerton (46.47m).
Shaiann Charles, the other T&T representative in the event, finished seventh with a 34.40m effort.
T&T also earned bronze in the opening session, Portious Warren producing a 12.70m throw for third spot in the girls’ under-20 shot put. Jamaican Rochelle Frazer (13.63) and Antiguan Jess St John (13.26m) claimed gold and silver, respectively.
Warren’s teammate, Marielle Pierre (11.64m) was seventh in the event.
Tyriq Horsford finished just outside the medals in the boys’ Under-18 javelin. He threw 59.96m. Bronze medallist Travis Ferguson, of Bahamas, produced a 60.40m effort. The top two spots went to Grenada, Anderson Peters throwing 67.67m to edge his teammate, Mickel Joseph (67.23m) into second spot.
T&T athletes, Khemani Roberts and Anya Akile were eighth and 15th, respectively, in the girls’ under-18 high jump, clearing 1.60m and 1.55m.