Following her record breaking performance at the Barbados Amateur Swimming Association (BASA) Short Course National Championship the weekend of (Friday 4th- Sunday 6th December), national youth swimmer Fayth Jeffrey was again in scintillating form this past weekend when she reset two age group records for girls 9-10 years old.
Jeffrey was competing at the 2nd annual Open Invitational Swimming Competition dubbed “Bridging the Gap 2020”; the championship was organized by Dolphins Swim Club in collaboration with the Barbados Amateur Swimming Association (BASA).
Representing the Pirate Swim Club, the ten year old, captured silver in the 50 metre fly in a time of 33.84 seconds, breaking the previous record of 34. 24 seconds held by Katelin Samuel set at the ASATT Invitational in 2012; she picked up another silver medal stopping the clock in a time of 1 minute 29.25 seconds in the 100 breaststroke, thus breaking her pervious record of 1 minute 30. 45 second set at the BASA Long Course National Championship earlier this year. There was enough fuel in the tank as she went on to clock 2 minutes 57.47 seconds in the 200 metres fly.
Following the championship this reporter spoke to Fayth’s mother, Donna Kaidou about her daughter’s performance to date, she said, “I am extremely happy she was able to achieve her goals; for me she worked hard, she is motivated and continues to work towards her goals”.
“That’s the end of competition for 2020 as we now look forward to the new age group and what 2021 brings,” she noted.
Donna continued, “During the national shutdown Pirates Swim Club conducted virtual land training via Zoom. When protocols started to ease and beach was allowed, they did beach training. She also used a private pool as the Aquatic Centre was still shut. When the all clear was given for the Aquatic centre to open they remained closed, due to renovations. The aquatic centre opened in the summer, around August and that’s when they returned to full time practice”.
Competition wise, Fayth did a triathlon (including a duathlon) , a sprint relay in the National Triathlon; she also incorporated running, a 5 kilometre slingshot road relay and two cross country relays during the latter part of this year”.
According to Donna, “There is absolutely no rest for Fayth as she participated in a Kids Multisport five-day pre- Christmas Camp. The event was organized jointly by British Triathlon Level 2 coach Darren Treasure and Barbados and the Caribbean’s No. 1 ranked professional Tri-athlete Matthew Wright. Over the five days, Fayth participated in swimming, cycling and running. The event was spread across three venues – The Barbados Aquatic Centre, Pebbles Beach and the Garrison Savannah”.
Donna was straight to the point when she said, “Now you see why I need sponsorship, all these sporting events/ championships cost money in order to get those types of results”.
Safety skills: “This was never the path we had envisioned; it was always for her to have the skill for safety”. Her mother noted.
According to Donna, we moved to Barbados in 2010 when Fayth was 6 weeks old while I was doing my post graduate studies and then moved back to Saint Lucia at the end of 2011.
“In Saint Lucia Fayth attended the Tapion Private School and then the Laborie Girls Primary School”.
“We moved back to Barbados in 2016, and then she was enrolled at St. Angela’s and joined the Pirates Swim Club”.
She is in Common Entrance year and expected to sit the 11 plus in 2021, her favourite subjects are Mathematics and Science.
Apart from swimming, she plays the Violin; she is a Grade 5 Violin student with the Joy Knight Music School.
Fayth has represented St.Angela’s at Cross Country, NAPSAC and Inter School Swimming.
Fayth who commenced her swimming career at the age of four years with the Southern Flying Fish Swim Club Learn to Swim Programme (LTSP) has since grown from strength to strength to be a force to be reckoned with in the 9-10 girls category.
In 2015 she made her competitive swimming debut at the Rodney Height Aquatic Centre (RHAC) at the age of five years and five years later she continue to be a major attraction in the pool as all eyes are on her.
There is no catching this young aspiring swimmer: on the sub and regional level she first represented Saint Lucia at the Organization of Eastern Caribbean (OECS) Swimming Champions in 2017, 2018 and 2019; likewise the Goodwill Championship 2017, 2018 and 2019; the latter, she was Saint Lucia’s lone representative in Suriname.
At the OCES championship in 2018, she captured five gold and two silver medals; in 2019 she captured two silver and two bronze medals and went on to set one record in the 400 metre freestyle. At the Goodwill Championship in 2018 she collected one gold in the 50 metre breaststroke and in 2019, one silver medal.
Following her breaking performance earlier this month, Fayth has qualified for next year’s Carifta Swim Championship in Barbados.
As any young and competitive athlete, Fayth has her eyes set on the Commonwealth Youth Games (CYG), the Youth Olympic and the summer Olympic Games going forward.
In 2018 she took home the prestigious award in the Saint Lucia Aquatic Federation (SLAF) 8 and Under Female Swimmer of the Year title.