Pride in Caribbean athletes
Mon, August 13, 2012 - 2:01 PM
The Nation's Online Editor Carol Martindale looks back at the just concluded 2012 London Olympics with Caribbean pride and joy.
The 2012 London Olympics are now over and most of us, if not all, in the Caribbean are today feeling a tremendous sense of joy and accomplishment at what our athletes have been able to achieve.
In a sense, our athletes have made others who were once a force to reckon with, particularly on the track, stand up and take note.
Take Usain Bolt, for example, who has done a repeat of the 2008 Beijing Games.
He again took the gold in the 100m, the 200m and was part of the winning Jamaica team in the 4x100m. Add to that, the Jamaica men’s team also set a world record in that relay, clocking 36.84.
The Jamaican women were close behind also winning gold, as well as other medals for their country. The performance and priceless smile of Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce of Jamaica warmed the heart of many Caribbean people.
Not to be left out are the achievements of 19-year-old Kirani James of Grenada who won gold in the 400m as well as Keshorn Walcott of Trinidad and Tobago who also won gold in the javelin.
So what’s there not to be proud of?
I must confess that I was very disappointed to hear some Barbadians exclaim with disbelief that Bajans were cheering on athletes from other countries.
That view is very insular as far as I am concerned.
We are all Caribbean people – it’s the one strong thread that binds us all together.
I was one of the people who was cheering on all the Caribbean athletes.
And, while I am not a sports person by any means, I understand the importance of these Games and what it means for all of the Caribbean, especially for our regional athletes who will further inspire others to reach for gold.
If most of us were bias and shortsighted then we would have only been hailing for Ryan Brathwaite who came fifth in the men’s 110m hurdles.
Thankfully, the majority of us are not and therefore when we saw the Caribbean doing well, it was with pride that we cheered and shouted knowing the region as a whole had done well.
That meant something to us and we celebrated the victories.
Other Barbadians and Caribbean people felt this same way and shared their joy on the Nation’s Facebook page.
Stacey-ann Harewood: “Congrats, Jamaica. God bless all the Caribbean athletes. You did very well and made us proud.”
Susan Archer: “Congrats. I love it. I may not be Trini but I am a proud West Indian.”
Leanne Fisher: “Nothing else to say except ‘absolutely beautiful’. Way to make Jamaica and the rest of the Caribbean proud.”
Saskia Brown: “Great Job Trinidad and Tobago. Well done to our Caribbean athletes.”
Mas Man: “The Caribbean rising.”
Brigitte Adams: “Well done, Kirani and Grenada; all the Caribbean is so proud of you.”
• Carol Martindale is the Nation’s Online Editor; email firstname.lastname@example.org
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