Bahamian Anthonique Strachan wins
the Girls Under-20 2011 Carifta Games 200m. In second place is
Shericka jacson of Jamaica. Photo by Dean Greenaway
It has been sixteen years
of waiting. The last Bahamian athlete to capture the Austin Sealy Award
for the Most Valuable Athlete of the Carifta Games was Golden Girl Debbie
Ferguson-Mckenzie. She won the award at the 1995 Games in the Cayman
the president of the Barbados Amateur Athletic Association, is considered
the founder of the Carifta Games, which celebrated it’s 40th
Ferguson-McKenzie went on to become
one of the Golden Girls, anchoring both the Seville World Championships
and Sydney Olympic Games 4x100m relay.
She also won the Gold medal in the
200m at the Edmonton World Championships in 2001, the Bronze medal at
the 2004 Athens Olympics as well as the Bronze medal in the 2009 Berlin
On the final evening of competition
in the 2011 Lime Carifta Games, sprinter Anthonique Strachan ended the
sixteen year old drought. Our prayers were answered!
performance in the Scotiabank National High School Track and Field Championships
of 23.17sec, a world leading time, and her further improvement in the
BTC Carifta Trials to 23.06sec gave notice that she was capable of performing
well at the 40th Carifta Games in Montego Bay.
What solidified her choice, we believe,
was her performance in the semi-final of the Girls Under-20 200m.
As Strachan did in the final of
the BTC Carifta Trials, she ran as if she
was running against herself and the clock. The time was an amazing
22.93sec., an improvement of .13sec. The wind reading was +1.1mps.
tied Veronica Campbell- Brown’s record Carifta record. The record
was set in the 2001 Carifta Games in Barbados.
That caused great anticipation as
to her possibility in the final. Could she break Campbell-Brown’s
record? Campbell -Brown won the 2004 and 2008 Olympic Games 200m.
In the final on the final evening,
Strachan won in 23.17sec. The wind was still, with a reading of 0.0mps!
This was the identical time she did at the Scotiabank National High
School Track and Field Championships.
With a victory on the 100m in 11.38sec,
and the victory in the 200m, the tying of Campbell Brown’s ten year
old record would have been the deciding factor. The time is also the
best time for a junior athlete in the world so far this year.
Strachan attends St. Augustine’s
College and is a member of Club Monica. Dianne Woodside is her coach
at St. Augustine’s and Club Monica.
We felt that either Strachan or
Tynia Gaither, the Silver medalist in this event at the World Youth
Olympics last year would have won the award, based upon their performances
earlier in the season.
Anthonique competed in the World
Junior Championships last year in Moncton, Canada, where she finished
fourth in the semi-final of the 200m in 23.99sec. She ran 23.66sec in
Strachan was born on August 22nd,
1993 and has another year in Carifta. That gives her another opportunity
to break Campbell- Brown’s record.
Her time of 22.93sec is a qualifying
time for this year’s World Championships in Daegu, Korea.
This summer she is eligible for
the Pan American Junior Championships in
Miramar, Florida. Next year she will be eligible for the World Junior
Championships in Barcelona. All of these international meets are governed
by qualifying procedures set by the Bahamas Association of Athletic
The 2012 Olympic Games qualifying
standards will be released soon and there is a great chance that she
will make the “A” Standard in the 200m.
When Campbell-Brown set the 200m
record in 2001 she had already won
the 200m in the 2000 World Junior Championships.
When asked about what she would
do at the Games, a day before the BTC 2011 Carifta Team Bahamas departed
for Montego Bay, Strachan said 22.8sec. She is extremely confident,
which should bode well for her future in the sport.
Anthonique is the fifth Bahamian
athlete to win an Austin Sealy Award. The others are Ferguson-McKenzie
in 1995, Pauline Davis-Thompson in 1984, Lavern Eve in 1982 and 1983,
and MaryAnn Higgs in 1978.
This is just another example of
the title of this column, “Small Country, Great Athletes”.
This weekend Strachan leads the
St. Augustine’s College “Big Red Machine” team, which includes
World Junior Champion Shaunae Miller, who false started in the Games,
to the 117th edition of the prestigious Penn
are in order for Anthonique Strachan, 2011
Austin Sealy Award Winner.