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Men's relay team gives Trinidad and Tobago an early Independence Day gift with historic IAAF win
Published on August 25, 2017 Email To Friend    Print Version

Screenshot from a NAAA TT video of the Trinidad and Tobago 4 x 400 relay team about to receive their gold medals at the 2017 IAAF World Championships in London, England, on August 13, 2017

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad -- The 2017 IAAF World Championships, which ended on August 13, 2017, in London, England, left Caribbean netizens brokenhearted that Usain Bolt, widely acknowledged as the Greatest of All Time (GOAT), ended his international track and field career with a bronze medal in his signature event, the 100-metre dash.

Just as gut wrenching was the fact that the Jamaican track team failed to place in the 4 x 100-metre final, as Bolt pulled up during the last leg, unable to carry on due to injury. But the region's spirit was lifted when, seemingly out of nowhere, Trinidad and Tobago clinched the gold in the last event, the 4 x 400 relay.

The win didn't actually come out of nowhere, of course, no matter how surprised the commentators may have been. The team copped silver two years ago at the World Championships, and clearly had first place in their sights this time around.

The win marked the first ever gold medal for Trinidad and Tobago in the 4 x 400 event -- the team dedicated their victory to the country, especially in light of the twin island republic's upcoming 55th anniversary of independence from Great Britain, which will be marked on August 31, 2017:

It is common knowledge that the members of the national athletics team have had no government assistance for about three years. While the National Association of Athletics Administrations of Trinidad and Tobago (NAAATT) does attract some corporate sponsorship, the majority of these funds is put towards operating the association; athletes competing at world-class level often do so largely on their own steam.

This article written by Janine Mendes-Franco originally appeared on Global Voices on August 23, 2017
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