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Tuesday, January 02, 2024
Daley Carifta’s Best Ever 200M Butterfly Swimmer

The year 2023 was a record-breaking one for the CARIFTA Region Juniors. One of the top youngsters involved in this banner year for the Regional Junior Swimmers was Bermuda’s Elijah Daley, writes Tony Morrison.

By December Daley established himself as the best CARIFTA Junior 200m Butterfly swimmer of all in Short Course Meters in the event.

In early November, Daley was in action for the Etobicoke swim club in Canada at their home pool for the Age Group International. Daley was already the fastest swimmer from Bermuda with his 2022 performance. That year he placed second in 2:05.87. Last year in the Heats he threatened that mark with 2:06.07. In the final, he crushed that mark to swim to a new National Record of 2:01.19. The Silver was won by teammate Max Malakhovets, a University of Pennsylvania commit in 1:58.52. The Gold went to Canadian World Championship medallist Javier Acevedo in 1:55.11.

There would be more to come at the Ontario Junior International at the Toronto Pan Am Sports Center – Competition Pool. The competition would see him creating more history, competing in the 18 and under category he lowered that standard with a swim of 2:00.05. That made him the fastest CARIFTA junior swimmer of All-Time. He passed Martinique’s Matthias Bellance 2:00.86 (2010) and Trinidad and Tobago Emil Goin (2:00.15).

Goin had set the junior regional best in 2017 representing Pointe-Claire Swim Club at the Ontario Junior International placing fourth. Goin holds both the Junior and Senior National Records with that 2:00.15 swim. He also holds the Senior Long Course Meter National Record of 2:04.42.

Bellance who competed for the Longvilliers Club took the CARIFTA 15-17 200 Long Course Meter Butterfly title for all three years in the age group. He swam 2:06.82 in 2009 in Aruba. In 2010 he set a then CARIFTA record of 2:05.83. Matthias closed out his CARIFTA years with a 2:07.95 victory in Barbados.

In the final Daley set a new Personal Best, and a Bermuda 17-18, Bermuda Open, and CARIFTA Region Junior best and became the first junior sub 2 minutes swimmer with a swim of 1:59.14. That placed him fourth overall. The time would also place him as the top 15-17 swimmer in Canada.

This is a monumental achievement for Daley, Bermuda, and the CARIFTA region. He still has another year left as a Junior so there will be more opportunities for the standard to be lowered.
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