St Fort entertained at the multi-purpose Ergilio Hato Stadium in the capital city of Willemstad, where the regional championships is being held, retaining her sprint title and in the process gave T&T its fifth medal of the day—three gold and two bronze.
The World junior bronze medallist jumped with happiness after getting confirmation on the scoreboard that she had indeed crossed ahead of Jamaican Aneka Brissett, who had picked up pace coming to the finish, but was just edged at the line and had to settle for silver in 11.57. Third was Grenadian Halle Hazzard in 11.67.
En route to the thrilling finale, St Fort blazed the track to win the first heat in 11.74, running in a negative 2.9 wind. Her time was the second fastest of the eight qualifiers with second heat winner Brissett, entering with the quickest time of 11.63.
In the preliminary round, Shikyla Walcott, T&T’s other runner in the event, did not advance after placing sixth in 12.21, to have the 11th fastest time overall.
Minutes earlier in the Boys’ U-18 final, Adel Colthrust running in a negative 2.9 wind, raced to the gold in a time of 10.63 beating Adrian Curry of Bahamas (10.63) and Tyreke Wilson of Jamaica (10.69) in to second and third, respectively.
In the girls’ equivalent, Akilah Lewis just missed out on reaching the podium, placing fourth in 11.85 while Ayla Stanisclaus was sixth in 12.24.
T&T also two finalists in the Boys’ U-20 event in Jalen Purcell and Jerrod Elcock but neither had any success in a race that had three false starts. Purcell was fourth in 10.64 and Elcock sixth in 10.74.
In the morning session, Ianna Roach secured T&T’s first medal of the Games, throwing her way to gold in the Girls U-18 shot put event. Her furthest attempt was her fifth throw, measuring 14.43m. Any of her first three throws could have won her the gold, reaching 14.13m in her opening effort, 14.36m in her second and 14.40m in the third as Danielle Sloley of Jamaica took second with 14.12m and Tamera Manette (Martinique) was third with 13.86m.
T&T second medal came from Konnel Jacob, a bronze, in the Boys’ U-20 discus throw. His heave of 57.28m pushed him into third behind Jamaicans Roje Stona (66.41m) and Kevin Nedrick (60.38), who won gold and silver, respectively. Clarence Hannibal of T&T also competed in the event and his best throw of 47.85m placed him fifth.
Jacob St Clair gave T&T its third medal, bagging bronze in the Boys U-20 400m final. He clocked 47.02 to follow gold medallist Christopher Taylor of Jamaica and silver medallist Cayman Islands’ Jamal Walton (46.46), to the line.
In the girls’ version of the race, local quartermilers Joanna Rogers was fifth in 56.22 and Rae-Anne Serville was behind her in sixth in 56.25.
Also Tyshawn Grey and Akil Boisson did not advance out of the semifinals round in the Boys U-18 400m. Grey had the 15th fastest time of 50.19 and Boisson was 17th overall in 50.66 of the 27 participants. Only the quickest eight times progressed to the final.
US-based athlete Tyra Gittens is sitting comfortable at the top of the Heptathlon with 3,478 points, winning all four events on day one—the 100m hurdles in 14.22 for 947 points, the high jump, leaping 1.83m for 1,016 points, shot put 12.00m (661) and the 200m (854).
Her team-mate Anya Akili, last year’s bronze medallist in the event, is holding steady in third with 2,740 points. Akili followed Gittens to the line in the 100m, crossing in the same time as Jamaica Peter-Gay Mckenzie, 14.91 to both earn 854.
Akili placed third in the high jump in 1.61m (747), seventh in the shot put in 7.57m (372) and third in the 200m in 26.35 (767). Sitting second is Thelia Ruster of French Guiana with 2,854.
In the Octathlon, after four disciplines, Kerlon Ashby is in third place with a tally of 2,821 points behind Barbadian Aaron Worrell, who leads with 2,921 and second-place Wikenson Fenelon of Turks and Caicos with 2,914.
T&T’s other competitor in the event Aaron Caesar made an early exit from the competition. He was active in both events in the morning session but did not continue.
In the opening event, the 100m, Caesar was third overall in time of 11.23 (810) and Ashby’s 11.25 (806) placed him fourth. In the second discipline, the long jump, Ashby leaped a distance of 6.64m (729) to finish third, while Ceasar placed eighth with a 6.13m (615) attempt.
Following the opening ceremony, Ashby returned and produced a 11.24m-throw in the shot put event for 560 points and in the 400m he won the opening of two heats in 51.98 (726) to place fourth overall.