T&T's three-time World Short Course Swimming Championship medallist Dylan Carter will begin his medal at the FINA World Aquatic Championship in the men’s 50 metres butterfly heats at the Aspire Dome in Doha, Qatar Sunday from 10.39 am.
The 28-year-old Carter, a ten-time Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games medal winner will line up in lane five of the fifth of seven heats against Venezuelan Jorge Hernandez, Italian Federico Burdisso, Poland’s Jakub Majerski, Netherlands Nyls Korsranje, Australian Cameron Mc Evoy, Korea’s Inchul Baek, Uzbekistan’s Eldor Usmonov, Slovakia’s Tibor Tistan, and Japan’s Shinri Shioura.
Going into the heats, Carter is being considered among the major contenders for a medal with the semifinals also carded for today, ahead of the gold medal splash on Monday.
Last year, Carter who secured two bronze medals and one silver at the World Short Course Championship was tenth best in the 100m freestyle in the heats and 16th overall after the semifinals with times of 48.16 seconds, and 48.60, while in the 50m butterfly he qualified from the heats with the third-best time of 22.89 but then had times of 23.05 for joint eighth in the semifinals, for a swim-off where he placed second best in 23.26 and failed to advance to the final.
And with the Paris Olympic Games 2026 on the horizon, the World Junior and Commonwealth Games 50m butterfly silver medallist T&T swimmer is eager to make a big splash in Doha.
Portuguese teenager Diogo Ribeiro, the World Junior Record holder in this event, won his first senior World Championship medal last summer when he took silver in the 50m butterfly behind Italy’s Thomas Ceccon (who is skipping the meet with a finger injury).
While there aren’t many finalists from last year’s World Championships returning, not far behind Ribeiro is a quartet of really good and experienced sprinters with a lot of international hardware.
American Michael Andrew is chasing his 50m-medal quartet and is the second seed, and while he didn’t make the USA team in 2023, he was the bronze medallist at the World Championships in 2022 while third-seeded Carter has looked good over the last nine months with his 50m butterfly being more inconsistent over that time period.
He swam a 22.89 at the Worlds prelims, but just 23.05 in the semifinals before losing a swim-off to miss the final.
Other contenders include co-World Record holder in short course Szebasztian Szabo of Hungary, long course World Record holder Andrii Govorov, Egyptian Abdelrahman Elaraby, McEvoy, Shaine Casas and Cooper.
There are several other good young swimmers besides Cooper in this field, including 20-year-old Cameron Gray of Australia, 22-year-old Stergios Bilas of Greece, and 21-year-old Mario Molla Yanes of Spain.
Molla Yanes was one of the surprises of the World Championships when he improved from 23.54 to 23.16 to just miss the final in this event. He had a pretty good meet at the European SC Championships to continue that momentum.
Carter, who is accompanied by coach Dexter Browne will also compete in the 50m freestyle heats on Friday (February 16) followed by the semifinals should he be among the top 16 qualifiers, and then the finals on February 17.
T&T will also be represented by 31-year-old Cherelle Thompson who will be competing at her third World Championship.
Her first event will be 50m butterfly heats on February 16 with the semifinals set for the same day and the final one day later.
A competitor at the last Olympic Games, Thompson will then conclude her campaign in the women’s 50m freestyle with the heats and semifinals of that event carded for February 17 and the final one day later.
Aquatic Sports Association of T&T (ASATT) administrative manager Neil Marcano who has been appointed a Technical Official for the Open Water Championship in Doha.