Cleopatra Borel claimed T&T’s first gold medal of the 2015 Pan American Games when she threw 18.67m to win the Women’s Shot Put title at the CIBC Athletics Stadium in Toronto last night.
Borel managed the distance on her second of six attempts to narrowly outperform American Jillian Camarena Williams, who threw 18.65m on her final throw. Chile’s Natalia Duco nabbed the bronze with 18.01m.
Her performance bumped T&T up to 14th of 25 countries on the medal list with one gold, one silver (Njisane Phillip) and one bronze (George Bovell) while it marked her first gold and third medal at the Pan Ams following a bronze in Brazil in 2007 and silver in Mexico in 2011.
Borel, 36, has been in excellent touch in recent times, having also won the gold during the Istvan Gyulai Memorial in Hungary on July 7.
Meanwhile, sprinters Keston Bledman and Kelly Ann Baptiste were unable to add to T&T’s medal count after narrowly failing to reach the podium in the Men’s and Women’s 100m respectively.
Bledman clocked 10.12 to place fourth in his final, finishing behind local hero Andre De Grasse, who won the gold in 10.05, Bajan Ramon Gittens (10.07) and St Kitts and Nevis’ Antoine Adams (10.09). Baptiste had to settle for fifth after stopping the clock in 11.05 as Jamaican Sherone Simpson won the gold in 10.95. Ecuador’s Angela Tenorio won silver in 10.99 and American Barbara Pierre grabbed bronze in 11.01. T&T’s Semoy Hackett (11.16) managed eighth.
Bledman and Baptiste had earlier won their semifinals with Bledman timing 10.10 to edge American Remontay McClain (10.11) and Gittens (10.15) and Baptiste (11.05) finishing ahead of Ecuador’s Angela Tenorio (11.10) and Brazil’s Ana Claudia Silva (11.13). Hackett’s fifth place finish in the other semifinal in 11.16 was just enough for her to advance.
Also in action for T&T last night was Sparkle McKnight, who managed fifth place in the Women’s 400m Hurdles final in 57.30. American Shamier Little took the gold in 55.50 while Canadian Sarah Wells (56.17) and Uruguay’s Deborah Rodriguez (56.41) won silver and bronze respectively.
Earlier in the day, both Jarrin Solomon and Machel Cedeno qualified for tonight’s Men’s 400m final with solid runs. Solomon placed third in his semi in 46.16, finishing behind Luguelin Santos of Dominican Republic (45.72) and American Kyle Clemons (45.75), while Cedenio (46.06) was runner up in the other semifinal, beaten by Nery Brenes of Costa Rica (45.85).
Emmanuel Mayers missed out on the Men’s 400m Hurdles final when he came third in his semi. His 50.81 put him behind Jamaican Leford Green and Puerto Rican Javier Culson while the round’s slowest qualifier was Bahamas’s Jeffrey Gibson in 50.74.
Deandra Daniel placed 15th in the Women’s High Jump final, with 1.75m. Her event was won by St Lucian Levern Spencer in 1.94m.
Janeil Bellille was eliminated from the Women’s 400m when she finished seventh in her semifinal, clocking 54.41. American Shakima Williams nabbed first in 52.28.
In cycling Emile Abraham did not start in the Men’s Individual Time trials, which he had been carded to enter.