|Full name||George Bovell III|
|Nationality||Trinidad and Tobago|
18 July 1983 |
Port of Spain
|Height||1.96 m (6 ft 5 in)|
|Weight||92 kilograms (203 lb)|
|Stroke(s)||Individual medley, freestyle|
|College team||Auburn Tigers|
George Richard Lytcott Bovell III (born 18 July 1983) is an Olympic bronze medalist swimmer and former world record holder from Trinidad and Tobago. He is a four-time Olympian and the Caribbean region's most successful swimmer. Bovell recently won a Bonze Medal at the 2013 FINA Long Course World Championships in Barcelona in the 50m Freestyle, clocking a time of 21.51 seconds. This time would have clinched silver in the Olympic Final one year Earlier in which he placed 7th. In 2012 Bovell won a Bronze Medal at the FINA Short Course World Championships in Istanbul in the 100m Individual Medley; a testament to his versatility. He was ranked 2nd, 4th and 8th in the FINA World Rankings for 2012 in the 100m IM, 50m freestyle SCM, and the 50m freestyle LCM respectively. 
George Bovell represented Trinidad and Tobago at the 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012 Olympics. At the 2004 Olympics, he won a bronze medal in the men's 200 IM: the 9th medalist in the country's history and 12th medal overall. It was also the first-ever Olympic swimming medal for the country, and T&T's only medal from the 2004 Olympics. Bovell also made it to the Finals of the 50m Freestyle in London where he placed 7th in the fastest field ever assembled.
Bovell is also a 5 time Pan American Games Medalist, with 2 gold, 2 silver and 1 bronze, the most of any Trinidad and Tobago Athlete.
Bovell is currently the fourth fastest performer of all time in the 50m Freestyle. This is different from the 200 IM, the event in which he won his Olympic Medal and in which he has held the world record. He is also the second fastest performer ever in textile in the 100m Individual Medley.
He was voted the CCN TV6 Sports Personality of The Year for 2012 by the public of Trinidad and Tobago.
Trinidad and Tobago National Awards
- Chaconia Gold
- Humming Bird Gold
- Sportsman of the year
- TTOC Athlete of the year
- 2012 CCN Sports Personality of the year
- Olympic Bronze Medalist
- Former World Record Holder
- 2013 FINA Long Course World Championship Bronze Medalist 50m Freestyle: 21.51
- 2012 FINA Short Course World Championship Bronze Medalist 100m IM
- Five-time Pan Am Games Medalist (2 Gold, 2 Silver, 1 Bronze)
- Nine-time World Championship Finalist
- 2nd Place Overall in the 2012 FINA World Cup (7 gold, 9 silver)
- Five-time Individual NCAA Champion
- Eight-time Individual SEC Champion
- 2-time Caribbean and Central American Champion and record holder, also 2 silver, 2 bronze
- Former NCAA Record Holder
- Most All American Honors in Auburn History with 25
- Multiple Caribbean and Central American record holder
- Four-time NCAA Team Champion
- Undefeated in college swimming career
- 100m LCM freestyle 48.82
- 50m LCM freestyle 21.20
- 200m LCM Individual Medley 1.58.80
- 200m Freestyle 1.48.80
- 100m individual Medley 51.20
- 50m SCM 20.82
- 100m SCM 47.03
• Rebounded in tenacious style from surprisingly medal-less London 2012 Olympic Games – his fourth Olympics – with awesome performances in three international meetings between October 2 and December 23, 2012
• October 2 to November 11 – Tallied 16 medals, 7 gold, nine silver in finishing first or second at 50 meters freestyle or 100 meters Individual Medley, in eight-city, 16-day round of the FINA Short Course (25m) World Cup Championships
• First runner-up for Overall Outstanding Male Swimmer at 2012 FINA World Cup
• December 12 to 16 – 4th in 50-meter freestyle final and third (bronze medal) in 100- meter Individual Medley final at 11th International Swimming Federation’s (FINA) World Short Course Swimming Championships in Istanbul, Turkey
• Become first Trinidad and Tobago swimmer to win a medal in FINA’s World Championships – in his career ninth world championship final – bronze, for 3rd place in Istanbul, December 16, 2012 final of 100m individual medley (butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, freestyle)
• Finished four hundredths of a second battling fourth in December 14 in the FINA Short Course World Championships 50-metre freestyle final in Istanbul – 21.03 seconds 4th, 20.99 (3rd, Anthony Ervin, USA).
• December 21, 2012 – Won the 100m Medley final (51.69 seconds) flying-finish style – second place (53.58) – at Vladimir Salnikov Cup Open International Swim Meet in St Petersburgh, Russia – Qualified for 8-man final as eighth best on time (55.48 secs)
• December 22, 2012 – Finished powerful second for silver medal in 50m freestyle final at Vladimir Salnikov Cup Meet in Russia – Event – Istanbul Worlds winner Morozov of Russia winning again – featured also the European champion as well as two 50-metre finalists from London Olympic Games 2012
• Ended 2012 world-ranked #2 at 100m Individual Medley, #4 at 50m Freestyle, a world championship first-time medallist and second world major-event medal winner – 2004 Athens Olympics bronze (200m IM), the first
-Also ended with 18 other global medals – 8 gold, 10 silver, a Salnikov Cup Meet record, national records, lifetime bests and evidence of having overcome the 2011 vehicular accident scare of unfitness for competition in 2012
• Ended 2012 as arguably closest challenger to compatriot and fellow London Olympian javelin-throw gold medallist Keshorn Walcott for TT’s Sportsman Of The Year 2012
- Nominated for Male Athlete Of The Year, Sport Performance Of The Year, Consistent Performer Of The Year
• Recorded lifetime best times at 50-metre freestyle (20.82 secs, World Cup, Stockholm, Sweden, October 14) and 100-metre Individual Medley (51.20 secs, World Cup, Berlin, Germany, October 20)
• World Cup 1st leg, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, October 2 – SILVER: 2nd to Kenneth To of Australia in 100 m IM final and October 3 – SILVER: 2nd to USA’s Anthony Ervin in 50 m Freestyle final
• World Cup 2nd leg, Doha, Qatar, October 6 – SILVER : 2nd to To of Australia in 100 m IM final and October 7 – SILVER: 2nd to Ervin of USA in 50 m Freestyle final
• World Cup 3rd leg, Stockholm, Sweden, October 13 – GOLD: 1st, beating To into 2nd in 100 m IM final and October 14 – GOLD: 1st, beating Ervin in 50 m Freestyle final
• Clocked below 21 seconds – 20.82 – for the 50-metre freestyle for first time in career in winning the gold medal at World Cup in Stockholm – new TT national 50-metre freestyle record
• Timed 51.56 for 100 m IM gold in Stockholm – new TT national record
• World Cup 4th leg, Moscow, Russia, October 17 – SILVER: 2nd to To in 100 m IM final and October 18 – GOLD: 1st, beating Ervin into 2nd in 50-metre freestyle final
• Timed 20.90 in winning Moscow 50-metre freestyle gold – second sub-21 seconds clocking in 50-m freestyle
• World Cup 5th leg, Berlin, Germany, October 20 – GOLD: 1st, beating To into 2nd in 100 metre IM final and October 21 – SILVER: 2nd to Ervin in 50-metre freestyle final
• Timed 51.20 in winning 100-m IM gold in Berlin (October 20) – new TT national record, fastest short-course time for 2012 and second best time ever behind American Ryan Lochte
• Timed 20.97 in 50m freestyle second-placed finish for third sub-21 seconds timing
• World Cup 6th leg, Beijing, China, November 2 – SILVER: 2nd to To in 100m IM final and November 3 – GOLD: 1st, beating Ervin into 2nd in 50-metre freestyle final
• Timed 20.97 in 2nd in 50-metre freestyle final for fourth sub-21 seconds timing
• World Cup 7th leg, Tokyo, Japan, November 6 – GOLD: 1st, beating To into 2nd in 100m IM final and November 7 – GOLD: 1st, beating Ervin in 50m Freestyle final
• Timed 20.94 for 50-m win in Tokyo for fifth sub-21 seconds timing (World Cup record: 20.57)
• World Cup 8th and last leg, Singapore, November 10 – SILVER: 2nd to To in 100m IM final and November 11 – SILVER: 2nd (21.30 secs) to Ervin in 50m Freestyle final
• Ranked #1 in 100m IM and #3 in 50m as at December 7, 2012
• Swimming Championships and Multiple 50-metre freestyle record holder – 20.82 seconds his latest new Trinidad and Tobago record set October 14 in Stockholm, Sweden
• Reached 50-metre freestyle final in London Olympics, finishing 7th of 8 timed 21.82 seconds
• Reached 50-metre freestyle semi-final in 2008 Olympics, Beijing, China,
• Hit Olympics high note with 3rd place finish in 200 m IM final in 2004 Olympics, Athens, Greece – time: 1:58.80
• Distinguished as TT’s lone medal winner at 2004 Olympics – also contested 100 m and 200 m freestyle events, reaching semifinals
• 9th medalist in Trinidad and Tobago’s Olympic Games history and 12th overall
• Trinidad and Tobago’s flagbearer at the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics in 2008.
• Nine-time World Championship Finalist
• Five-time Pan American Games medalist with 2 gold – 200 m freestyle and 200 m IM, 2 silver – 100 m freestyle and 100 m backstroke at 2003 Games in Dominican Republic and 1 bronze – 50 m freestyle, at 2007 Games in Brazil
• Popular flag-bearer for Trinidad and Tobago at the 20th Central American and Caribbean Games (CAC) in Cartagena, Colombia
• Two-time Caribbean and Central American record holder
• Former NCAA 200 m IM Record Holder (1:53.93) and four-time NCAA Team Champion
• Most All American Honors in Auburn University (USA) History with 25
• Eight-time Individual SEC Champion
• Two-time Spanish Open 50m champion – 2009, 2010
• Two-time Jax50 (USA) challenge champion 2010, 2013
• Recipient of Trinidad and Tobago National Awards: Chaconia Medal (Gold) in 2004, Humming Bird Medal (Gold) in 2003, Sportsman of the Year 2004 and Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee Athlete of the Year (2003 and 2004).
• Third male swimmer between 1962 and 2012 to win TT Sportsman Of Year – Father George Bovell first swimmer-winner in 1969, Richard Fernandes tied with Hasely Crawford for 1977 award
• Applauded for making his 2012 World Championship 100m IM bronze medal a special gift to his coach Anil Roberts (Athens Olympics through to Istanbul Worlds) – the presentation in a Christmas Eve 2012 welcome-back-George reception at Piarco (Trinidad) International Airport
• Rated 4th fastest performer of all time in 50 m Freestyle Swimming in lead-up to London 2012 Olympics
• Won gold and two bronze medals at the Longhorn Aquatics Elite Invitational Meet in Texas during the 1st week of June 2012
• Competed at the Canada Cup on 8th July 2012 in the men’s 50m freestyle event: 22.01s
Set new world record for 200-metre Individual Medley in March 2004 at NCAA (National Collegiate Athletics Association of the United States) Championships, Long Island, New York – 1;53.93 (record since broken) Has been publicly acknowledged for contribution to development programmes in the sport by managing visits by some of his world-competition colleagues to Trinidad and Tobago to conduct swim skills development sorties for locals Holds place on unique list of brothers representing T&T in sport – his brother, younger Nicholas Bovell a fellow TT competitor at Pan Am Games, World Championships (Barcelona 2003), Olympic Games (Beijing 2008) – Some other T&T sporting brothers: Bravos of cricket, McCleods of swimming, Kellars of Cycling, Edwards of Tennis
If your mother was an Olympian and your father was an accomplished swimmer then naturally you would grow up to be an accomplished Olympic swimmer. This was exactly the case with George Bovell III, T&T’s first Olympic medalist in swimming. He was born in Canada though he grew up in Arima, Trinidad. Bovell’s genetic advantage may have been a factor in his success, however, his own hard work and determination cannot be disputed.
He began swimming competitively at age seven, bolstered by the encouragement and support of his parents. Bovell was educated in Trinidad until high school when he enrolled in Bolles High School in Jacksonville, Florida. This prestigious institution fostered an environment conducive to athletic pursuits, especially swimming. Bovell joined the ranks of alumni who went on to compete in the Olympics.
Auburn University in Alabama, USA was his choice over several contenders including the Universities of Florida, Tennessee and Southern California. His college years were most auspicious. He was a five time National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) champion as well as a seven time South Eastern Conference (SEC) champion. Bovell was also named on the SEC Academic Honor Roll.
He also held the record for the most All-American honors by an individual swimmer or diver at Auburn, with a total of twenty five. Bovell temporarily left Auburn in 2006 to focus on training with Coach Mike Bottom at Cal Berkley. He went back in 2009 when he graduated with a degree in Building Science.
T&T’s most renowned swimmer, he represented the country in regional and international competitions for decades. His local coach, Anil Roberts, guided him throughout his career. Bovell performed admirably at World Championships and can be named among the handful of T&T athletes who have won multiple medals at the Pan American Games.
Bovell has not been without his share of injuries. In November 2004 he tore his Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL), situated at the back of the knee. This affected his training as well his ability to participate in certain events like the breaststroke and the individual medley. Perhaps the most serious injury was the one he acquired right before his excursion to the Olympics in London.
Bovell recalls the ordeal,
“Also my brain injury before London – I hard terrible vision and memory loss. I was forced to remain very quiet because if my blood pressure raised from an elevated heart rate it could have caused the bruise on my brain to bleed, giving me a stroke which could have been potentially fatal. It was a very stressful time because for a while there I had no guarantee that everything would be ok and the prospects having a stroke or having to undergo brain surgery had me absolutely terrified and unable to have peace of mind. After progressive brain scans we saw that my brain healed up and I was allowed to return to training. I lost so much strength and fitness that I think to fight back and make it to the Finals in London will be something that I will continue to be proud of for the rest of my life.”
Truly remarkable indeed and T&T should be extremely grateful and proud of his Olympic appearances as they brought honor and inspiration for the country. After his momentous bronze medal, Bovell was distinguished as the 2004 West Indian Tobacco Company (WITCO) Athlete of the Year. T&T has shown tremendous appreciation, respect and affection for this son of the soil.
He was bestowed two national awards; the Hummingbird Medal (Gold) in 2003 and its highest honor the Chaconia Medal (Gold) in 2004. Bovell was also named the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee (TTOC) Athlete of the Year in 2003 and 2004.
In 2012, he displayed remarkable tenacity to capture sixteen medals at the FINA/Arena Swimming World Championships. Bovell placed second overall in the esteemed international competition, sealing his legacy as one of T&T’s most enduring and beloved athletes who would not let anything stop him from doing what he loved best.
As if to drive another nail in the hammering he bosomed for the London 50-m freestyle final lowdown, Bovell III battled up to fourth in the December 14, 2012 event final in the World Short Course Championships in Istanbul, Turkey. He had already, too, then touched sub-21 seconds for first time in career as in post-Olympic World Cup 8-city tour series. But when he struck precious metal in Istanbul in the Worlds 100-metre Individual Medley, third for bronze in the December 16 final, Bovell III had created another page in local swimming history. He had become the first T&T world championship swim medalist. Add that to his Athens Olympics 200m IM bronze and Bovell III’s star(fish) shines.
Back home in Trinidad for Christmas 2012, Bovell III, on the welcome mat at Piarco International Airport on Christmas Eve, had returned from Russia where he signed off competition 2012 with gold in the 100m IM and silver in the 50m Freestyle at the Vladimir Salkinov Cup International Meet.
St. Andrew’s Private School, Trinidad Fatima High School, Trinidad Maple Leaf International School, Port of Spain, Trinidad Bolles High School, Florida, USA Auburn University, Alabama, USA
WITCO Sports Foundation: Sports Awards 2002
First Citizens Sports Foundation: Reaching For the Stars: 41st Sports Awards (1964-2005)
First Citizens Sports Foundation: The Quest for the Prize: 42nd Annual Sports Awards (1964-2006)
First Citizens Sports Foundation: Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year Awards: 50years of Champions: (1962-2011)
Trinidad and Tobago Gold Athens 2004: Souvenir
Olympian 75 Years of Trinidad & Tobago in Olympic Sport 1934 – 2010
- Official website
- Olympic medalists of Trinidad
- Profile George Bovell
- The Race Club
- Interview on what will be his 4th Olympic Games.
- "2004 Olympic Games swimming results". CNN. Retrieved 22 July 2007.
- "Swimming Results". Retrieved 4 August 2007.
- "Swimming Results". Retrieved 4 August 2007.
- "Swimming Results". Retrieved 4 August 2007.
- "Pan American Games Rio 2007 Results". Archived from the original on 14 July 2007. Retrieved 29 July 2007.
- "Trinidad and Tobago's Newsday, Let the Games begin, By Joan Rampersad, 8 August 2008". Retrieved 10 August 2008.
|World Record Holder
Men's 200 Individual Medley (25m)
25 March 2004 – 8 December 2005