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Fletcher awarded elite status by BOA

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Elite athlete: Fletcher

Julian Fletcher has been awarded category A elite athlete status by the Bermuda Olympic Association.

The Bermuda swimmer, who was the Island’s flag bearer at the Pan American Games in Toronto, has been rewarded for his strong performances over the past 12 months.

Previously a category B athlete, Fletcher is now eligible for maximum financial assistance from the BOA, however to justify selection, category A athletes must “equal or better the standards set for the highest competition set by their international federation.”

Since appearing in the Commonwealth Games last year, Fletcher has twice lowered the national record in the 200 metres breaststroke, hitting 2min 18.77sec at the Arena Pro series meet in Mesa, a time that also gave him the A standard for the Pan Am Games in July.

Other athletes in the A category include traithletes Flora Duffy and Tyler Butterfield, as well as Tyrone Smith, the long jumper.

“Julian is grateful for the added support and is training hard to reach his Rio [Olympic Games] qualification,” Ben Smith, the Bermuda national swimming coach, said.

Meanwhile, Jesse Washington has taken his first steps on the path to elite athlete status by being named in the C category, which is for those young athletes who are seen as having the potential to reach the highest level.

Jesse has been well known for a long time in Bermuda for his strong swimming results,” Smith said.

“Ever since he was 11-years-old he has been re-writing the age group Bermuda records every chance he gets. He has won numerous Carifta, CISC and CCCAN medals over the years and been able to participate at Youth Olympic Games.

“This summer he had a huge highlight by taking his first National record while winning the first gold medal for Bermuda at the Canadian Age Group Championships. As he transitions to the senior ranks this opportunity to become an elite athlete is a first step in supporting his continued development towards the world stage.

“We are very proud of these two athletes and their accomplishments and look forward to great results in the upcoming season.”

First step: Washington