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Sun, Aug

Trinidad and Tobago cycling team members, composed of Keron Bramble, Paul Nicholas and Njisane Phillip, celebrate winning the gold medal in the cycling track men's team sprint at the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru, Thursday, Aug. 1, 2019. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

2019 Pan Amer­i­can Games
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Pan Am champ Paul lauds Hartwell’s input

National cyclist Nicholas Paul has made it clear he and his teammates have Olympic gold in mind following an impressive showing at the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru. The cycling team was warmly welcomed home around 11 pm last night by family and well-wishers as the celebrations continued.

Paul brought home two medals, becoming TT's first Pan Am sprint champion in 48 years, while also winning gold alongside Njisane Phillip and Keron Bramble in the team sprint. He broke Phillip's Pan Am sprint record (9.977 seconds) in the individual race, gunning it in 9.808 seconds.

In an interview at the Piarco International Airport, Paul said they were focused on getting the job done for the country on the grandest stage in Tokyo, Japan next year.

Paul acknowledged the tremendous impact national coach Erin Hartwell has on him and his teammates.

Hartwell is a US bronze medallist at the '92 Olympics, silver medallist at the '96 Olympics and a former world record holder.

"It's always a pleasure working with Erin, because he's very professional. He's always showing us the way to the top and we just have to keep following that path and hopefully we'll make it to the Olympics and win a gold for TT."
On his experience in Peru, Paul said, "Firstly, I would like to thank God, because without him none of this would be possible. Secondly, I would like to thank my teammates for making it a memorable trip and I just wish we could do it all over again."

Regarding the individual sprint, he beamed about creating history with Phillip with this country's first all-TT Pan Am sprint final.
"It's always a pleasure to have two Trinidadians in the finals. Going up against Njisane, it's always a pleasure knowing he's my teammate and that the red, white and black had gold no matter what." As for shattering his record, Paul said that was never on his mind. "Ah, well, I never think about breaking records. I just think about going out there and doing my best, and whatever I come out with, I'm happy."

Which gold meant more to Paul? The 20-year-old unhesitatingly said the team sprint got him more excited.

"It was a huge accomplishment winning the team sprint...We're just happy we're progressing each day and we just have to keep working hard to go into our next meet in Bolivia and to remain fit and ready to race again. We're already resuming training tomorrow."

Although he left Peru a perfect two gold medals from two events, Paul said it was not all smooth on the track. He had to contend with relegation for an infringement in the semis of the individual sprint, forcing the match-up into a third ride, which he won to prevail 2-1. "That's all part of racing. You just have to reset and refocus and go again."

As for the 48-year wait for sprint gold, Paul didn't know about the feat but was very much excited to learn of it at the airport. "That's exciting! Once the red, white and black is on top I'm happy, so to do that and bring glory to TT is a great thing for me."


2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru

Dates: Fri, Jul 26, 2019 – Sun, Aug 11, 2019
Host city: Lima, Peru
Athletes: 6,690


2019 TT Pan Am team

AQUATICS: Dylan Carter, Kael Yorke, Graham Chatoor, Jade Chatoor, Gabriela Donahue, Giselle Gursoy; Tracy De Montrichard-Carter, Chase Bloch, Joseph Mc Leod (officials).

ARCHERY: Daniel Catariz; Colvin Chin (official).

ATHLETICS: Michelle-Lee Ahye, Kelly-Ann Baptiste, Semoy Hackett, Alena Brooks, Kamaria Durant, Sparkle McKnight, Cleopatra Borel, Portious Warren, Tyra Gittens,Keston Bledman, Kyle Greaux, Jereem Richards, Dwight St Hillaire, Machel Cedenio, Reubin Walters, Akanni Hislop, Jerod Elcock, Asa Guevara, Andwuelle Wright, Wimani Stewart, Keshorn Walcott, Shakeil Waithe, Deon Lendore, Mauricia Prieto, Ayla Stansclaus, Tonya Nero; George Comissiong, Ian Carter, Nic Connor Alexander, Charles Joseph, Arlon Morrisson, Mastrapa Lopez, Wendell Williams (officials).

BADMINTON: Nekeisha Blake; Melvin Thomas (official).

BEACH VOLLEYBALL: Malika Davidson, Rheeza Grant, Daynte Stewart, Marlon Phillip; Nancy Joseph, Stephen Enile (officials).

BOXING: Nigel Paul, Aaron Prince, Tyron Thomas, Micheal Alexander; Reynold Cox, Rawlson Dopwell (officials).

CANOE SPRINT: Matthew Robinson, Nicholas Robinson; Merryl See Tai (official).

CYCLING: Nicholas Paul, Njisane Phillip, Kwesi Browne, Keron Bramble, Quincy Alexander, Jabari Whiteman, Kemp Orosco, Tyler Cole, Jovian Gomez, Akil Campbell, Teniel Campbell, Alexi Costa; David Francis, Erin Hartwell, Gene Samuel, Elisha Greene, Gabriel Thomas (officials).

GOLF: Isabella Lawrence; Wayne Baptiste (official).

GYMNASTICS: Joseph Fox; Charlie St Leger (official).

HOCKEY: Karlos Stephen, Akim Toussiant, Jordan Reynos, Kristien Emmanuel, Teague Marcano, Sheldon De Lisle, Marcus James, Mickell Pierre, Tarik Marcano, Daniel Byer, Micheael O’Connor, Shaquille Daniel, Lyndell Byer, Kwandwane Browne, Caleb Guiseppi, Dylan Francis, Joel Daniel, Malcolm Baptiste; Glenn Francis, Kirth Davis, Huw Stevens, Nicholas Baldeosingh (officials).

JUDO: Gabriella Wood; Mark Littrean (official).

ROWING: Felice Aisha Chow; Monica Hilcu (official).

RUGBY: Apphia Glasgow, Leah Kintiba, Nicolette Pantor, Blossom Stewart, Fayola Jack, Marika Mendez, Carlina Phillip, Maria Thomas, Kwanieze John, Aqiyla O’Brien, Kathleen Stephen, Kanisha Vincent; Jenilee Limada, Carlton Felix, Kelson Figaro (officials).

SAILING: Andrew Ivan David Lewis, Kelley-Ann Mary Arrindell; Official: Kairon Serrette (official).

SHOOTING: Anthony D Maraj, Marsha Bullen-Jones, Robert Auerbach, Roger Daniel; Ian Cockburn (official).

TABLE TENNIS: Rheann Chung; Anthony Corbin (official).

TAEKWONDO: Megan Lawrence; Cheryl Ann Sankar (official).

Team TTO in PAN AM 2019