PHOTO: GOLDEN GIRL! Celebrated CARIFTA Gold medalist 14-year-old Trishanni Warner is hugged by her happy mommy Melissa Warner outside the VIP Lounge of the Robert L. Bradshaw Airport this week (Spokesman Snap)

By: Precious Mills

BASSETERRE, St. Kitts (Friday 6th April 2018) –Bearing presents of a festive balloon with the words ‘CONGRATS’ along with a flower and a gift- wrapped bottle of a non-alcoholic beverage, Melissa Warner was the first individual on local soil to hug and congratulate her daughter gold medalist 14-year-old Trishanni Warner following this week’s return of Team St.Kitts-Nevis from the 2018 CARIFTA Games held in the Bahamas from Friday 30th March to Monday 2nd April.

On the afternoon of Tuesday 3rd April, the VIP Lounge of the Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport was reserved to welcome the 20 athletes, coaches as well as management officials of the St.Kitts-Nevis Amateur Athletic Association (SKNAAA).

Encouraging her daughter to wave to the cameras of media professionals who were part of the welcoming group, the young athlete-an 800 meter champion- flashed at least two shy-looking smiles at the request of her excited mother as team SKN made its way across the airport’s runway from aboard a chartered flight.

“I’m just happy! Even though I knew she would have bring back the gold, I’m extra happy!” said the excited mom to this reporter about her only child during a media interview.

Asked about her confidence level, she replied “Because I know my daughter; I know what she can do.”

Warner recalled the emotions she felt after her daughter’s winning race. At that time, she was home Easter Monday making the popular West Indian traditional treat conkie.

“I got a video. I jumped up! I was home making conkie and my phone nearly drop in the pot!”

Warner, a former track and field athlete who participated in CARIFTA Games, voiced further delight that her daughter has captured a medal at this level unlike her.

“I used to run. I went CARIFTA (Games) many times but I didn’t win any medals but I’m happy for her she bring home the gold for me.”

With a spot-on prediction of a gold medal, Warner is foreseeing that her athlete daughter will do it again at the summer Olympics.

“She will be going to the Olympics at the age of 16 and she will win the 200 meter,” she shared with reporters.

The summer Olympics occur every four year and the next event is slated to take place in 2020 in Tokyo, Japan.

Athlete Trishanni during the press conference that afternoon appeared very shy when invited to give media comments.

Supported by the SKNAAA President Val Henry (who was part of the travel team and who happens to be media professional experienced in interview training), after a moment of shy smiles, Trishanni managed to highlight that it was a “great” feeling and that she was “excited” after crossing the finish line.

Although a girl of few words, she has proven to be more of the action having won the under 17 Girls 800 meter final, from a field of 12 athletes at a finishing speed of 2:15.73 seconds- described as a lifetime best-on Monday 2nd April at the 47th CARIFTA Games.

She has made history in becoming the youngest athlete from the Federation to win a CARIFTA medal.

In the words of Henry: “…We’ve come back with a Caribbean champion who at the 300 meter mark decided to make a move. She took off Martinique, she pinned down Bahamas, she said Jamaica ‘bye- bye’ and she moved across when she arrived at the 200 meter mark and it air St.Kitts-Nevis heading down to the final stretch with a glorious victory.”

Notably, Team Jamaica secured silver and bronze medals for second and third positions while the host country the Bahamas saw their representatives at fourth and fifth spots.

According to Henry, “The name Trishanni Warner must be etched indelibly in the history of track and field in the Caribbean and St.Kitts and Nevis.”

Additionally, he talked about the confidence of Trishanni’s mom indicating that a couple days before leaving she told him that Trishanni would come back with a gold medal.

“She wasn’t just causally saying it; she believed it, she meant it and today her prediction has materialized,” he remarked.

Trishanni, who hails from Sandy Point in St.Kitts, is a second form student of the Charles E. Mills Secondary School (formerly Sandy Point High) which last month (March) won the 2018 TDC Interschool Championships, securing a fifth repeated win in a row.

Principal Boris Connor, in speaking with this media house during a telephone interview congratulated Trishanni and her family in light of the young athlete’s “exceptional job” at the CARIFTA Games.

He also applauded Trishanni for being a well-rounded student.

“She is quiet. She is also a top student as well academically because she is in class 2A1. She is well-behaved; she is no problem and she is talented in athletics,” Connor said.