SOFLO’s Sebastian Lares, FGC Swimmers Among Field For This Weekend’s UANA Swimming Cup.

By Sharon Robb

CORAL SPRINGS, January 17, 2018—Sebastian Lares of South Florida Aquatic Club and several other Florida Gold Coast swimmers will be among a field of nearly 400 swimmers from 33 countries for this weekend’s UANA Swimming Cup at Coral Springs Aquatic Complex.

The inaugural Union Americana de Natacion (UANA) meet is an international age group meet featuring swimmers competing in 2,325 individual events and 140 relays. The format will be a dual meet between Central America, South America and Caribbean. Neither North Americans or Canadians are allowed to compete.

Each country is limited to a maximum of six girl and six boy swimmers per age group. Swimmers have no limit in event entries but only two swimmers from each country can score.

Swimmers are competing in 11-12, 13-14 and 15-17 boys and girls age group categories.

Lares will be joined by several Florida Gold Coast swimmers including SOFLO teammate Gaby Banks of Jamaica, Azura Florida Aquatics’ Adriana Gooding of Trinidad & Tobago and Panama’s Emily Santos and Ireyra Tamayo and Pine Crest Swimming’s Andrea Santander of Venezuela, Daniel Jacobs of Aruba, Nicholas and Simone Vale and Annabella Lyn of Jamaica and Racine Ross of Trinidad & Tobago; TS Aquatics’ Luis Bucaro of Guatemala;St. Andrew’s Swimming’s Izaak Bastian of the Bahamas; Curacao’s Chade Nersicio of East Coast Aquatics and Ecuador’s Victoria Abad Wood of Plantation Swim Team in the Michael Lohberg Pool of Champions.

Lares will compete in six 13-14 events: 400-meter freestyle, 200- and 400-meter individual medley, 50- and 100-meter backstroke and 100-meter breaststroke.

Santander is seeded first in the 15-17 200-meter individual medley in 2:20.47. She is also entered in the 100-, 200- and 400-meter freestyle, 100-meter butterfly and 100-meter backstroke.

Timed final competition begins each day at 10:20 a.m.

The meet will also serve as one of the qualifiers for the Youth Olympic Games, Pan American Games and FINA World Championships. UANA is the regional governing body for aquatic sports in the Americas and has been in existence since 1948.


What: UANA Swimming Cup.

When: Friday-Sunday, 10:20 am timed finals each day. Warm-ups 8:30 a.m.

Where: Michael Lohberg Pool of Champions, Coral Springs Aquatic Complex, 12441 Royal Palm Blvd., Coral Springs

Of note: Swimmers from the Central American & Caribbean (CCCAN) and South American Swimming Confederations (CONSANAT) will compete and try to qualify for various major meets including the Pan American Games. For more information, call 954-340-5032.

Sharon Robb can be reached at

Aruba’s Patrick Groters Top Florida Finisher In CARIFTA Open Water, Bahamas Wins Team Title

Aruba’s Patrick Groters Top Florida Finisher In CARIFTA Open Water; Bahamas Wins Team Title

By Sharon Robb

April 27, 2014

Anthony Rechal of Guadeloupe had the fastest time in the open water competition at Sabana Basora, Aruba Saturday in the 29th CARIFTA Swimming Championships.

Rechal, 17, won the boys 15-17 5K event in 1 hour, 7 minutes and 12 seconds for 3.1 miles. Matthew Lyn, 16, of Jamaica and Pine Crest Swimming was eighth in 1:13:32.

Karl Fabry, 14, of Guadeloupe won the 13-14 5K title in 1:07:51. Patrick Groters, 14, of Aruba and Pine Crest Swimming finished out an outstanding meet just missing another medal placing fourth in 1:12:11.

In the girls 15-17 competition, Joanna Evans, 16, of the Bahamas won in 1:14:34.

Ingrid Champrobert, 14, of Martinique won the 13-14 race in 1:14:51. Annabella Lyn, 13, of Jamaica and Pine Crest Swimming was seventh in 1:23:21.

Bahamas won the team title with 736 points. Aruba finished runner-up with 618 points for the first time in the country’s history. Guadeloupe was third with 540 followed by Martinique, 474, Trinidad and Tobago, 446, Barbados, 437, Jamaica 403, Suriname, 347, Curacao, 193 and Cayman Islands, 170.

Groters older brother Jordy, a member of the Aruba national team since age 11, and Pine Crest Swimming completed his seventh and final CARIFTA meet.

The University of Missouri-bound Groters won four individual gold medals and one silver, another silver with his relay, broke two meet records and posted four career-best times. Groters and Daniella van den Berg of Azura Florida Aquatics were co-captains of Aruba’s team that made history by finishing second.

“Throughout these seven years I have met and raced so many people and I am so grateful for them to have made me a better swimmer and person through the races we’ve swum and the friendships we’ve made,” Groters wrote on his Facebook after the meet.

“Above all, I am thankful to have had this opportunity to represent my home Aruba and I definitely will continue to do so on bigger scales. Aruba Swimming’s future looks great and I can’t wait to hear the success stories that follow.”

The Caribbean Free Trade Association-sponsored meet, which featured most of the top junior age group swimmers in the Caribbean, is a qualifier for both the Youth Olympic Games and Central American and Caribbean Swimming Championships.

Sharon Robb can be reached at