Pan-Am Games 2023: Guyanese swimmers happy with improved performances

National swimmers Aleka Persaud and Raekwon Noel are leaving the Pan American Games in Santiago, Chile, with their heads held high after achieving their personal goals.

Noel, a predominantly distance swimmer based in the United States of America, feels that though he entered the meet underprepared, the times produced at the start of the new season call for enthusiasm.  He progressed to a ‘B’ final in his 400m Freestyle.

Persaud, now residing in England, is pleased after lowering her national record in the 100m Butterfly and is confident her future races will see significant improvement.

Both athletes swam their final race at the Games on Tuesday morning.

Persaud clocked 27.81 seconds, slower than her entry time of 27.42 seconds, while Noel, was disqualified from his 400m Individual Medley. No official reason has been given as yet for the disqualification.

According to Persaud, she said changes to training outside of the pool and improved nutrition since moving away from Guyana, has aided her improvement.

Additionally, Noel indicated he is happy with the times and knows with the work ahead, he will significantly improve and stay on his course for his aim of Olympic Qualification.

Meanwhile, National swim coach Sean Baksh, currently with the two swimmers in Chile, made a passionate appeal for more support for the swimmers, given their steady improvement.

Baksh is adamant that the athletes will produce even more for Guyana with support.

Guyana’s journey at the Games in Boxing, Badminton, Swimming, Taekwondo and Weightlifting has ended, and attention turns to Table Tennis from Sunday.

Track and Field, Archery and Esport are the other disciplines Guyanese athletes will contest.