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Odlum-Smith To Represent Saint Lucia At Paris 2024

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by Terry Finisterre

22-year-old Jayhan Odlum-Smith is the latest member of Saint Lucia’s team for the Paris Olympics. Currently training in France on an Olympic Solidarity Scholarship, Odlum-Smith recently set new national records (pending ratification) for the 50m butterfly and 100m freestyle.

It is in the latter event that the 2022 Caribbean Games 50m butterfly champion will compete in France. During the inaugural Caribbean Games in Guadeloupe, he also took bronze in the 100m freestyle.

Odlum-Smith’s best time of 50.60 seconds in his event, a time he set just last month, is just over two seconds off the Olympic Qualification Time. It is the fastest a swimmer from the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) has ever produced.  

To that end, and based on his standing in the World Aquatics Points Table (2024 edition) the Seajays athlete has been invited to accept a Universality Place. 

From Saint Lucia he will join Julien Alfred and Michael Joseph from athletics, and returning Olympian Luc Chevrier in men’s sailing, for Paris 2024.

Odlum-Smith competed in the men’s 50-metre butterfly event at the 2017 World Aquatics Championships. He has also competed for Saint Lucia at the World Aquatics Championships.

The swimming competitions at the 2024 Summer Olympics are scheduled to run from 27 July to 9 August 2024. Pool events (27 July to 4 August) will occur at the Paris La Défense Arena. The heats of the men’s 100m freestyle will be from 5:00 a.m. on Tuesday 30 July.

Saint Lucia has been represented at the Olympic Games in swimming since 2000, Saint Lucia’s second time participating at that level, after debuting at Atlanta 1996. But continuity has been an issue.

Danielle Beaubrun remains the only Saint Lucian swimmer to have been to multiple editions of the Olympics, having competed in 2008 and 2012. She is also the only swimmer ever from the OECS to have earned an invitation by meeting the qualifying standards for her event. 

It was expected by many that Mikaili Charlemagne, a Tokyo 2020 Olympian, would have been back for Paris 2024. She competed this year at the CARIFTA Swimming Championships, and then the CCCAN Championships.

With countries typically allowed to enter one male and one female swimmer, regardless of their qualification status, the reasons for Charlemagne’s exclusion are unclear.

 

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