There were all winners today at the Carlton Sports Club with the staging of the 39th annual Special Olympics Barbados National Games.
More than 600 athletes drawn from various special units, schools and independent institutions took part in the games that involved both track and field events. The games are the biggest event in the Special Olympics Barbados annual sports calendar.
Special Olympics Barbados chairman Donna King-Brathwaite told Barbados TODAY during a break in proceedings that the athletes were very excited to be participating in the games which would involved most of the disciplines undertaken in the Barbados Secondary Schools Athletics Championships and the National Primary Schools Athletics Championships.
King-Brathwaite said the athletes competed in divisions rather than age groups and included individuals from as young as eight to age 60. She expressed gratitude to those persons and organisations who assisted in the annual staging of the games.
On the track, Majenta Odle had a delightful time in winning the Division 5 25m, much to the pleasure of her supporters from the Caribbean Mind Institute. Ziesha Hinds was also in good form as she won the Division 2 200m and brought much joy to her school, Barbados Learning Centre.
Children did not have to finish at the head of the pack, though, to appreciate their own sterling efforts. Adorable Ramon Lovell of the Learning Centre was pleased as punch with his fifth place in the 25m run. Sheena Jordan was all focus, strength and skill as she took first place in the wheelchair race.
Christian Manning of the Caribbean Mind Institute was another athlete who performed well in the short sprint. His was a close race but he showed good acceleration down the stretch to win the Division 12 25m sprint.
Kevin Alkins was ecstatic to win the Division 3 softball throw and just to demonstrate just how much it meant he struck a Usain Bolt lightning bolt pose for good measure. The spectators loved it.
Also in winners row was Charles F Broome’s Deshaun Carter who captured the Division 5 400m. Rashado Greene also excelled over that same distance, winning the Division 7 400m for his school, Ann Hill.
Thea Cheltenham demonstrated great stamina in winning the 800m for the Derrick Smith School.
And as if to demonstrate that the games were not just about competition, but about having great fun, the athletes of St Matthews competed in an event against each other and of course, St Matthews won.