Luan Gabriel: An introduction to the world (with video)

The line up before the race

Some argue that we have some 80,000 people living in Dominica and while others doubt that figure it was hard to doubt the numbers that filled the Olympic stadium tonight.

It was her first international appearance and she was going up against the fastest woman on the planet. Number 1557 in Lane 3 of heat 6 was Luan Gabriel of the village of Bioche. A Student of the Isaiah Thomas Secondary School and member of Aspire Athletics Club lined up against the best sprinters in the world. As a matter of fact she was standing next to the 100m women Champion of London 2012. She had hoped for this moment and she intended to relish it.

The 2012 200m heat was going to be her toughest challenge yet. So far 2012 had been a good year for her. Gold at Carifta and qualification to the CAC Juniors along with her trip to the World Junior Championship had culminated with her inclusion in her national team for the London Game.

With the wind blowing colder than usual the young lady from the west coast showed a bit of inexperience as she warmed up on the track. The other athletes were clearly more versed in their routine and after all, it must have been a bit intimidating to stand in front this much people. Then the moment came!

The Announcer requested silence, called out the names of Shelly-Ann and Anthonique and off they went.

AthleteCountryAgeP/BS/BResults / Rank
Crystal EmmanuelCAN2022.9023.1323.10 / 5
Shelly-Ann. F-PryceJAM2522.1022.1022.72 / 1
Luan GabrielDOM1624.0924.0924.12 / 9
Viktoriya ZyabkinaKAZ1922.9222.9223.49 / 7
Anthonique StrachanBAH1822.5322.5322.75 / 2
Nelkis CasaBonaCUB2822.9723.5923.82 / 8
Marielis SanchezDR2323.0223.2623.20 / 6
Evelyn Dos SantosBRA2722.9922.9923.07 / 4
Elyzaveta BryzginaUKR2222.4422.6922.82 / 3

According to Luan she was determined to get her time down to 23.8 but that did not happen.

A broad smiling Gabriel came into the mixing zone (the only place athletes can mix with the media) still breathing heavily and with a broad grin she echoed “Well I did my best, I was a bit concerned about my hamstring but I can say that I feel very proud to have been out there”.

Asked if she was disappointed she again responded positively “I got out of the blocks slower than I would like, I was a bit surprised at the pace they started with and had to work really hard to overcome the poor start”. Gabriel seemed excited to have participated and exclaimed quite gleefully “at least I can now say I am an Olympian”. She continued “I would have preferred a better time but the experience was good”.

Shortly thereafter her coach Joel Hamilton showed up. After exchanging an encouraging hug she again mentioned the hamstring.  That seemed to have been on her mind a bit. I asked if she had received treatment for it and she said yes.  She then said to her coach “Today they got a glimpse of me but in 2016 they will get to see me in Rio”.

I then asked her what it felt like being next to Fraser-Pryce (100m champ) and her response was as usual confident and brave, “well she help me pin on my tag and that was it”. There appeared to have been very little intimidation. “My intention was to stay focused on doing my best for my country and to put all the negatives aside” said the confident Gabriel. In the end she felt she lost a race but gained tremendous experience.

This young athlete deserves great commendation. She possesses raw talent, needs a lot of support and has the correct attitude for the creation of a champion. Her country needs to respond and we will explore that later this week.

She did her best. Usually your best should make yourself and your country proud. Tonight let the focus be on letting her know how proud we are of her efforts. The other stuff we can explore later in the week.


From the finish line In London England at the 2012 Olympics

Darwin Telemaque

Caribbean Sports Connection

On Behalf of the Olympic Committee

With the Compliments of Lime Dominica.

See video of the race below.

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  1. Mr.Athletic
    August 16, 2012

    Luan, remember you said you will be in rio ,hope ill meet you dere.Dominicans remember my name Osborne James-Kok

    A Dominica Athletic

  2. Bring Em Young Mormo
    August 9, 2012

    Congrats to Luan but all kudos should not be showered on her what about all those technocrats who accompanied her to London there were more members of the DOC on that trip than athletes,what was Nick Liverpool doing in London I guess it had to do with the constitution.When that entourage returns we need an inquiry into the workings of the DOC,these technocrats cant even play pitch and pine much less marbles for knocks.They are on those committes not to enhance sport but for the perks and fringe benefits,its time we rid these people because they certainly arent patriotic Luan was only included to justify their presence at the Olympic

  3. Breadson
    August 9, 2012

    Think Karani James from Grenanda- you an do the same- Luan stay focus and work hard- You made us Proud.

    Thank you very much.

  4. Anonymous
    August 9, 2012

    What a darling treasure she is!!!!

  5. August 9, 2012

    we dominican need to get real luan was good and i must say she did a real good job but lets face it why all that show about luan when she is not the issue here.luan job has gone what is next cause we have ppl write all kind of stuff about facilities she won gold at carifta no one talk about facilies.What we need to address we don`t lets talk about the dishonesty of team that went that the problem.Why was the hard working coaches sidetrack from meeting with luan and he is her head coach why was luan freathen that if she doesn`t go what will happen they say that her coach can`t she a girl when there was only men at the the games and the order thing is ask the coach the went london why was he barn from the d.a.a.a.ppl the problem is just not what we see i would like to know how the doc is form cause i hear that we have bawling in d.a.that we have a representative for it on the doc and when the so call media is reporting from london ask him what was said to luan and her mother if she doesn`t go to london the dishonesty of the doc and the man with no balls of the misleading the public by saying that she only going to watch when they knew that she must run in order for them to go she has to cause i.o.c.don`t paid for you to come and watch ppl let stop those bullshit and face the facts cause tomorrow this ppl that work hard will soon leave and go where they are being recognize and then we say they run but our organization are the one running them.The marlice and injustice that are being done anyway they say they gone to pay a coach for her am waiting to see that cause when her coach wanted money to get her prepared they didn`t have his money thanks to the sportdivision head and a few other ppl that she could qualify that today they can ride high but i hope them continue disrespectful ppl that what dominicans are anyway luan you have made us proud wish you had better your time but we understand its your first time congrats hope to see you in rio doing it big time to the coaches who spend their time moneys i will say that to you lets put dominica first and if she comes to you`ll give her an open arm we do christ alot yet he opens his arms with a will heart and a big smile so coach think of luan future a king is not honoured in his land but am sure she will remember you tomorrow hearts goes out to the coaches the disrespectfullness of going behind your back i understand but thats dominicans but please don`t let luan suffer for those who want to travel like shauner.

    • Truth
      August 9, 2012

      Thank you Basketball for giving us some inside information.

  6. verlo
    August 8, 2012

    i mean coach Nabi

  7. verlo
    August 8, 2012

    congrats to u Luan.You made me feel proud! Congrats to you coach for taking her from where she was and bringing her to where she is today.

  8. Anonymous
    August 8, 2012

    Luan you matched up with some big names out there and they didn’t blow you out. Hang in there and come 2016 you go boss them. I am proud of you. You amazed me. Proud Dominican. #Team Luan#

  9. budman
    August 8, 2012

    big up to Luan. She handled herself with class and pride.

  10. Travaile
    August 8, 2012

    I am so proud of u Luan.U went up against some big names in the business and that didnt faze u. u gave it ur best. at the age of 16, girl u r damn good, u can only get better from here on. I am proud of u. u make me proud to b a Dominican. sniff sniff. Go Luan go!

  11. Babyface
    August 7, 2012

    Proud of you baby girl . It’s your first you had a taste of it..despite all odds you made us part of the olympics and we’re happy. Keep your head up and dont let the negative get to you..there;s gonna be haters and discouragements but forget them..Aim for bigger heights so that you will bigger and better in 2016 . Dont give up sweety

  12. ReeAreLeeTee
    August 7, 2012

    Seriously, I had my hopes a little higher, but I must say that I felt such a rush of pride seeing the Dominican flag on the track. It took a lot for her to even get there so we must support her even more and show her how proud she has made us to have made the dent so that next time we can make an even bigger impression.

    I’m very proud of Luan and will be even more so when she does better next time.

    Proud Dominican.

  13. Anonymous
    August 7, 2012

    Dominica is proud of you Luan!

  14. trolol
    August 7, 2012

    You all have no idea how had it is to shave off seconds off your best time. Not even bolt could shave off 2 seconds in two years.

    • Anonymous
      August 8, 2012

      well she has four years to do it in…give her a break. i would love to see you on the track!

    August 7, 2012

    congratulations on trying your best and doing your duty to God and country.

    we loveeeeeeee you in harlem…for we are a sports community and we remember SAS striders athletics Sports club from harlem- the pioneers of athletics in Da.

    So keep on going on and on LUAN



  16. goodvibes
    August 7, 2012

    I really hope the government gives this young woman a scholarship to better her track n field.
    Many colleges too also give scholarships so maybe her fam can look into this….please Luan do not stay Dominica after high school…make hay while the sun shines.

  17. Morihei Ueshiba
    August 7, 2012

    Luan need to join Jamaica how can u progress in a country when your pm destroying track & field for cricket. U will not make it.
    We need leaders with vision and care about Dominica.

  18. Jane Messam
    August 7, 2012

    Well done my Queen of Dominica. You did well out there and you have put Dominica on the map.

  19. Reader
    August 7, 2012

    Congratulations to Luan! I am so proud that you went out there and represent us. You do have raw talent that can only shine brighter if we give you the tools you need to success. Keep working hard; stay focused!You are an Olympian and a champ.

  20. Sushi
    August 7, 2012

    Thank you, Darwin, for this objective commentary. And from a great sports personality yourself, I must say. Yes, yet another Dominican that we can be proud of in all seasons! Can’t help wishing, though, that we could filter out all of these ARMCHAIR DOMINICANS who are content to sit in the shadows and throw rotten apples into the gravy. A little proverb that we learnt in primary school is very applicable here … “Empty vessels make the most noise!” Thanks again, Darwin. And words cannot express our love and admiration for Luan and those like her, who are willing to transcend any odds in order to attain their noble ambitions for PERSONAL (first) and national success. Much love to you, Luan, and may you continue finding fulfillment in your pursuits!

  21. zigi
    August 7, 2012

    i do not see if some of our people you know.
    in order for her to do well the next time she must take a taste of the pie to see how well it is cooked and that is what she did..
    my blessings to you luan and you got a feel of the field professionally and you did your best. the nice thing about it is that your mannerism on how you deal with it is that out of a hundred percent i give you 100%. GOOD TO GO GIRL AND I THINK YOU SHOULD GET THE FIRST COACH TO TAKE YOU TO THE NEXT LEVEL.

  22. positive mind
    August 7, 2012

    Luan Thank you, Thank you Thank you very much for reoresenting us well. Most of these stars right now, did not do as well as you did when they were your age (16). Now some of them are world and olympic champions. You are on the right track. Just put God first, stay focus,continue to work hard and aim for a scholarship, block out all the negative DOMINICANS, and you will succeed. I’ll continue to pray for you and I hope to get your Autograph in Brazil. Good Luck and may the good Lord continue to bless and be with you.

  23. Nudibranch
    August 7, 2012

    Luan, you did us all proud. You’re on the biggest stage there is and I suggest that if you get the opportunity to go and train grab it with both hands. Thank Nabi, he has taken you to the top level. But always be mindful that crab in a barrel here will never lift our stars higher and let them shine.
    Rio next, hone your talents come back sharper.

  24. Sporting Gem
    August 7, 2012

    Congratylations! It was indeed a proud moment for Dominica on the World Stage. Luan is young and has many years and Olympics participation ahead of her – God willing. What we need to do now is to take all these sporting personnel place them in a camp and train them

  25. Anonymous
    August 7, 2012

    You made us all proud, Luan. Gold in Brazil in 2016!

  26. Anonymous
    August 7, 2012

    Congrats Luan. You made Dominica proud.

  27. Anonymous
    August 7, 2012

    Please send Luan to Jamaica so she could get some proper training.

  28. dcan in gwada
    August 7, 2012

    one thing i love about dominicans when comes to sports weather win lose or draw we congratulate whoever is representing

  29. Morihei Ueshiba
    August 7, 2012

    We need track & field facilities for our athletes.

  30. we
    August 7, 2012

    She is plucky. I like her. May God bless her for representing Dominica so well.

  31. Jackie Brown
    August 7, 2012

    Both Luan and Erison did Dominica proud by qualifying for the Olympic. If Dominica has a Sport Association this should encourage them to have sports at schools.

    Living in the host Borough I have not been up to the Olympic. I did not watch the opening but surely will watching the closing.

  32. Original Eagle-Eye
    August 7, 2012

    Laun thank you just for having the gusto to say let me try. That was more than enough. You will continue to excel. This is as huge a world stage of exposure as you can get. Stand tall young lady and be proud.

  33. Anonymous
    August 7, 2012

    Thanks luan for representing Dominica. I am very proud of you taking that challenge of running with the most professional runners. That was a huge step. Please Please Please don’t feel discourage. Take this opportunity and make it positive. On your return work harder even if it’s by working toward a scholarship to get better training.

  34. Anonymous
    August 7, 2012

    Luan you did great… practice makes perfect… u were only two seconds behind Pryce. Don’t be discou

  35. GoBeckMore
    August 7, 2012

    Start of big things to come Luan. Keep up the good work. Dominicans in and out of Dominica is behind you. I promise to support if donations are requested. Your success is great for all of us.

  36. sphynx
    August 7, 2012

    congratulations my lady.dominicans at home and abroad got the opportunity through your participation to see how idle dominican governments have been in promoting sports and music in gave us a reason to hope for greater are young and need to be not give up.nothing beats a failure but a trial.we are proud of you.hope you get a warm welcome back home.they think it’s the end but it’s just the beginning!

  37. JAZZY
    August 7, 2012

    Well done!

  38. Concern citizen
    August 7, 2012

    You have performed very well, keep it up and you will have a medal the next time. Had work brings success.

  39. Teacher
    August 7, 2012

    Great job, Luan!! Dominica is very proud of you. You participated in the 2012 Olympics, and that’s what matters most.

    Mr. Darwin Telemaque (and Admin): You also should make us proud. As we’re all aware, DNO readers are worldwide. When you publish an article, PLEASE proof read it for spelling, punctuation, and gramatical errors BEFORE exposing it to the world! Luan made us proud, but as a former school teacher, I’m disappointed at the quality of yor article. Also, how can you put the letters “DOM” next to Luan’s name, when it is so clear and obvious the “DOM” in the Olympics is for the Dominican Republic?? So sad to see our own people mae that mistake like this in this forum with international readers!!

    I live in the USA, and read DNO every day, and I look forward to these improvements.

    Thanks. LUAN 2016!!!!!!

    • Sideless
      August 8, 2012

      read your article you will find that you made mistake too

  40. sss
    August 7, 2012


  41. Jamdominic
    August 7, 2012

    Rio 2016 is certainly not unrealistic. Those who watched or followed the Olympics would know that there is a young woman from another country who at age 12, as she watched the Beijing Olympics told her mother that she would be on the podium at the next Olympics because she could do what they are doing. Sure enough she made it to the top of podium not once but twice. We should note however, what it took to get there. There was a lot of sacrifice from the single-parent, the siblings and the athlete herself. She had to leave family to facilitate training, did home-schooling instead of regular schooling etc. What is interesting however is i never heard once mention of what the Government had to do or did….it was a personal, private decision. Is there a lesson here for Luan? I know she cannot be expected to provide running tracks and some facilities…so like the person mentioned earlier, she will just need to move to where the facilities and the coaching are available. Let’s remember too that there are other upcoming athletes gunning to do exactly what Luan aims to do…and from the look of what we saw “Strachan of Bahamas 18 yrs.)they are more advanced than Luan right now…so she needs to act now…not next year or two years from now.

  42. Matriculation
    August 6, 2012


  43. Hmmmm!
    August 6, 2012

    Thanks Luan for representing Dominica at the London Olympics. We are happy that you ran the race. Rio 2016 for you now!!

  44. teaacher
    August 6, 2012

    Experience is the greatest teacher. sooooooooooo proud of you

  45. Devil's Advocate
    August 6, 2012

    This girl did awesome!! Did you see her time? She was just 2.0 seconds off the time of the reigning 100m olympic gold medalist. She has great potential and time on her side. See you in Rio!!!

  46. Rae!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    August 6, 2012

    So cool to see Fraser-Pryce help you pin your tag! Shows that you must remain humble and one day you will be pinning a young athelet’s tag when you are a world champion!

  47. Michel Bousselaire
    August 6, 2012

    Bravo, Luan!
    The motto of Pierre de Coubertin, one of the founders of modern Olympic Games was ” The important is to participate”….”the main thing is not to win, but to do on your best!”
    Thank you to acomplish and give every dominican and friends of Dominica to be proud !
    At 16 years old you got the 44th chrono time up on 54 athletes in the competition, doing better than some athletes from Japan,Tchad,Cambode,lebanon…in between others.
    And, inspite your lack of experience in that impressive wold,you finished at just 0,03 second of your personnal best time !
    Applauds again !
    I wish All Dominicains as Individuals, Associations and Government give you the best way to be ready for the next Olympics …

  48. wangy
    August 6, 2012

    one day small countries like dominica will rise to the top.while the other athletes are in the gym,people like miss gabriel are in school.while they are eatin special foods,little gabriel can only eat whatever her mom and dad cookes.athletics are most of these people lifetime work,while little miss gabriel may have to struggle to get one training for the are brave girl.oneday the authorities will allow u to train round the clock and not only a couple months before these events but i say to u grenada did it,so u can in the waiting my girl.

  49. ideal
    August 6, 2012

    thanks for being there we are proud of you win or lose, you represent us and you can say i was there

  50. looking in
    August 6, 2012

    Mr.Darwin Telemacque, hear me well, standing next a great elite athlete will never make this child a star, proper training and guidance will do the trick. stop write a third rate report with fancy words like “BEE” and think this will do be honest for once in your life, the Girl was not ready for the level of competition end of story.

  51. Great
    August 6, 2012

    Congratulations Luan and Nabi. I believe that Nabi should have been there with her, he would have given her a much better pep talk than Joel. Joel is not her coach and I believe this makes a difference. I was very pleased to see her performance and believe that if given the opportunity to attend a colleg ein the states within the next four years she will be one of the greats. 24 seconds and trained in Dominica with no facilities is damn near outstanding. This shows that we have the talent here we now need the facilities. I hope the government will consider an athletics stadium.

    Hats off to our Dominican princess athlete. I will be looking forward to seeing you in Rio in 2016.

  52. dom
    August 6, 2012

    you are a star. Do not let people or fans make excuses for why you aren’t number 1. You are number 1 already you just have to make it happen, dig deep and show them.

    • ml
      August 7, 2012

      Accidentally click dislike. I agree she is a star. With practice and commitment she will be great

  53. Marguerite J
    August 6, 2012

    Congratulations Luan. You are on your way to greatness!!!!

  54. Anonymous
    August 6, 2012

    better luck next time :) :) :)

  55. Cz
    August 6, 2012

    Congratulations Luan. May you be encouraged, keep positive spirit and keep on training. You are a star.

  56. Statistics
    August 6, 2012

    Her Coach Joel Hamilton? Here I was thinking it was Nabi Wallace whom was not mentioned any where in this article.

    • Bob
      August 6, 2012

      Everyone knows Nabi is her personal coach. Joel was the team coach at the Olympics. But who cares whether he gets mentioned or not? Coaches are not usually praised much in the same light as the athlete,

    • hmm
      August 7, 2012

      Jesus Christ get over it! Did you not read the previous reports where Darwin gave Nabi due recognition!

      Everything is NOT a federal case! Some of you people can be such bitter mofos!

    • TW
      August 7, 2012

      Read previous articles as her previous coach was ousted in favour of her current one.

  57. Cosco
    August 6, 2012

    Luan is very dependent on getting into the US NCAA system. At best she could get a scholarship to Jamaica to get coached by the great Glenn mills or Steven Francis, IF they will take her as they have so many more talented juniors.

    Given that the US are now getting aware they are actually training the rest of the world to beat them, the logical thing they are going to start doing, as stated recently is to start to offer nationality as a condition of some of their advanced training programs.

    Considering we couldnt keep Jerome Romain, why would Luan Gabriel not switch allegiance to become a star, if she has the real qualities.

    As usual politics is the big culprit. It started with Mamo who demolished the first stadium being built by PJ in Canefield because she didnt want anything associated with PJ there, Up to now the Industrial Estate has been a nothing. Then you have this Government who got rid of a multipurpose stadium design because it was UWP, to build a cricket stadium which sits there most of the year doing nothing for sports in Dominica.

    We have no indoor facility, not even covered facilities for basic sports like basketball and volleyball or tennis or badminton. No track facilities. Our people are still trying to qualify on grass in 2012.

    But luckily we have Rabbit fest and Goat fest. World Champions at trying to cook a food and drink a rum.

    One day they will Olympic that and give us our due.

    Until then we will be last cacarat with incompetent people ruling the roost.

    • Bob
      August 6, 2012

      Very true.

    • hummm
      August 7, 2012

      Well said indeed. Please add also that not only is the stadium a cricket stadium, but they give football a hassle when they have a big match. Also mention that the Chinese use the stadium like their private playground while locals cannot have use of it for training etc. When a country does not invest in sports how do they expect to do well in sports? So congrats to Luan for trying against all odds….well done. If she wants to excel as a sprinter, she needs to get out to a college in the US where coaches and proper facilities abound.

      • August 9, 2012

        all of a sudden everyone talks about facilities for luan how was luan recognize what happen to the coach she had before who spent time and money to get her prepare to be recognize there were no facilities when she won gold at carifta people please let get things.We need a track yes but what will happen if we have a track the hard working coach because they not from the click of the doc or from the d.a.a.a.will get side track again cause we want to travel this are the issue we need to talk about and say thing that are not true about ppl so i can travel. i tell you something ask the coach that went with luan why was he barn for four year from the d.a.a.a.and the woman that say that luan coach is not a recognize coach let me tell her, he is the only qualfied level five coach here in dominica and this are the issue we need to address not track let respect ppl we take away someone hard work from them to get glory but i will say this the stone the builder refuses becomes the head corner stone.Today we can all jump and shout for luan but what about the ppl that work hard day after day we need the doc to tell how the doc is being form why is mis pringle being barn for what she is being barn how is our money being use is it for their self gain or on athletes so let stop crying about facilities ask the doc and the d.a.a.a. if they ever take the time to ask for a facilities for our athletes.ppl get real gorvernment will never do everything you year the doc of j.a. and the government working hand in hand but the only time our doc works with our gorvernment is for the will give you more

    • Mate
      August 7, 2012

      I agree with some of what you’ve said there, some are hilarious and some just got me like, wtf? But yeah….

  58. V2
    August 6, 2012

    Luan thanks for representing Dominica at the Olympics. You have all our support and encourage to continue your hard work. She you in Rio. One Love

  59. linky
    August 6, 2012

    very couragous yound lady

  60. zor
    August 6, 2012

    Well written Telemaque! DNO allu need to take note on this article and learn how to write a proper article

  61. Wade
    August 6, 2012

    You are going to be a star in these games,,,,trust me. keeping working hard. Your time was very encouraging

    • things happen
      August 6, 2012

      Indeed her score was encouraging! Match u her scores with the others in the other heats. There were actually 6 athletes after her. I feel proud of you, Luan!! KEEP RUNNING!!! Olympics 2016, here she COMES!!!

  62. me1
    August 6, 2012

    man i was happy she ran, really thought she would have gone to the next round, but seeing her on the big stage was good enought. You better believe she will be on that stage again in 2016 and maybe even flashing a medal or two.

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