Monday, November 30, 2020
By BRENT STUBBS
Senior Sports Reporter
DESPITE the restrictions imposed as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the Bahamas Bodybuilding and Fitness Federation has selected a 11-member team, inclusive of seven competitors and four officials, to represent the Bahamas at the Central American and Caribbean Bodybuilding Championships.
The team will leave town on Thursday for Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, and return on Sunday, December 7. The weigh-in is scheduled for Friday and the competition will take place on Saturday. There will also be a professional segment on Sunday where the Bahamas will be presented by Jimmy Norius in the Classic Men’s Bodybuilding.
Kaif Young, Jason Johnson, Wellington Wallace and David Dormaville will all carry the Bahamian flag in the Men’s Physique Tall Class and two female competitors - Fania Joseph and Norius’ wife Serena Salius Decius-Norius - will be making their appearances in the Women’s Bikini Short Class.
Federation president Joel Stubbs, who will accompany the team along with executive Brittany Hamilton, head coach Nardo Dean and his assistant Tim Rolle, said despite their size, they are taking an elite but very dangerous team to the championships this year.
Stubbs and Hamilton will also participate in the CAC Congress and serve as judges during the championships.
Of the four male competitors on the team, Stubbs said three are returning as medals from last year, placing first, second and fourth and so he anticipates that they will either duplicate or surpass their previous performances.
As for the females, Stubbs said last year Joseph was fourth, but because of her improvement during her training this year in the restrictions imposed by COVID-19, he anticipates that she should definitely be able to climb up the ladder and take one of the top two spots. And although this is the first time Decius-Norius will be participating in the CAC Championships, Stubbs said she has been training with her husband, Jimmy, who already had her competing in two competitions this year where she performed exceptionally well for a novice.
“We are grateful enough that these are athletes and being athletes, they already know what they have to do,” Stubbs said.
“You already know the steps, the protocols, the intensity, the fortitude and of course the energy and what it takes to really get your body to where it needs to be for the competition at hand.
“Secondly, they already know what the looks entail as far as their physique is concerned. So they know exactly how long it takes to start getting geared up and getting their act together so they can be the best them on stage.”
Without any actual competition this year, Stubbs said they had a chance to view the competitors in a private setting last weekend before the team was announced and he is confident that the athletes have put in the time and made the sacrifices to be the best that they can be.
“Kudos to all of them who would have put in the extra sacrifices and energy and whatever it really took to get their bodies to where it has to be,” he stated.
“The gyms were closed, so it was all about what you have home and whatever you could improvise and innovatively use to make it some training platform to make it happen for them.
“So I’m very pleased to see during the assessment and elevation how those who expressed an interest in competing this year, were able to present their bodies before us in the actual sit down. I am very pleased and excited that we can still go out there and represent.”
Having secured his pro card in 2008 when the CAC Championships was held here, Stubbs noted that from time to time during their interaction in a chat group that was formed, he was able to encourage them to stay focused on the task ahead of them and they were able to achieve that goal.
Norius, who earned his pro card in 2018, said his wife is excited to represent the Bahamas after competing in her second competition this year with her participation in the NPC Ultimate Grand Prix Bodybuilding and Fitness Championships.
“This is her first time and she just wants to feel how it is to represent the Bahamas,” he said. “It’s a small team. She expected the team to be bigger than it is. Normally we have about 20-25 athletes, but she’s looking forward to it. “She wants to give it her best shot.
“But for both of us, it’s not just about competing to win, but competing as a couple. We just want to celebrate life in this COVID-19 environment. It’s about giving your best shot and leaving it for the judges.”
Coning off a second place finish in the Novice Class A bikini class and fifth overall at the NPC Ultimate Grand Prix Bodybuilding and Fitness Championships Boca Raton, Florida at the end of October, Norius said Decius-Norius is eager to see how well she does at the CAC Championships.
“Sometimes you might have a body shape or body type that the judges like or they don’t really favour,” he said. “But the fact of the matter is the judges could never deny a conditioned body, someone who diets hart, someone who worked hard.
“But of course, in the bikini (division), she can’t be too ripped, too lean, but we tried to soften her look a little bit, but at the same time, have her to be conditioned. She loves her body.”
In a conversation with her, Norius said Decius- Norius told him that she loves her body and if they don’t like it, there’s nothing she can do about it.