Gwendolyn Smith overcame the cold weather in Poland to win T&T's first medal on the third day of action at the World Masters Athletics Indoor Championships in Torun, earlier yesterday.
The San Fernando resident copped silver in the women's 50-54 javelin, competing in two degrees Celsius temperatures, with a best throw of 36.76 metres achieved on her sixth and final effort. American Durelle Schmek took the gold medal with a 37.43m-throw. Ilona Kojalovica of Latvia was third with 33.30m.
The cold conditions proved challenging for Smith but she was determined to get this country's first medal.
She said, "The weather here is very cold and wet. Last night was two degrees. Throwing wet javelin is hard! So sunshine for me yes! I couldn't feel my hands and feet but I made the best use of it and was determined to medal."
The former West Indies cricketer missed out on a chance of medalling in the shot put as she missed the start time of her event. "There was a mix up in my times. I didn't double check and got to the stadium, waiting for my event while it was going on. It was too late to get in," said a disappointed Smith, who did well to regroup for the javelin. "I was devastated but coach told me to move on and bounced back in the javelin."
The 2014 World Indoor gold medallist is a veteran having winning titles at several World Indoor and Outdoor Masters Championships.
"Because I am quite familiar with my competitors I am able to gauge their throws and know when to come big. You must save a good throw when the reverse comes up after elimination," said Smith, who will next compete in women's 50-54 discus final on Friday.
Martin Prime advanced to the men's 55-59 60m final which will take place today at 7.35 am (TT time). Prime will run in lane one.
In the semifinals yesterday, Prime was fifth in the first semifinal race in 7.76. He did not finish among the top two spots which would have automatically qualify him for the final. Prime advanced to the medal round as one of the fastest on times.
Dwayne Caines, T&T's third representative in Poland, is scheduled to compete in the men's 35-39 200m in the biennial meet where T&T is among 88 countries fielding athletes 35 years and over. The championships will continue until Saturday.