Gumbs twins continue rewriting record books with personal bests

Gumbs twins
Djimon Gumbs, left and twin brother Diamante, set personal bests in the Shot Put and Discus Throw on Saturday. PHOTO: NSU Media Services.

By Dean “The Sportsman” Greenaway.

Northwestern State strongmen twin brothers Djimon and Diamante Gumbs continued their assault on the school’s All Time List, with personal best performances on Saturday.

With the best series of his career, Djimon had four throws well beyond his 19.35m (63’6”) indoor and 19.24m(63’1½”) outdoor bests Shot Put, in the Leon Johnson Invitational on his home track. In the process, he claimed the facility record, meet record and improved his own school record, narrowly missing the coveted 20m Shot Put barrier by 4cms, with his 19.96m (65’6”) third round personal best heave.

He followed up with throws of 19.74m (64’9 ¼”), 19.62m (64’4½”) and 19.49m (63’11½”), to lead a 1-2 finish with Diamante, who had a season’s best 17.04m (55’11”).  

“This weekend was nothing short of amazing,” Djimon told Island Sun Sports, after his mark moved him to No 2 on the All Time OECS List, behind the BVI’s Eldred Henry’s 21.49m (70’5¾”). “Everything just lined up for that moment. Training went well coming off a heavy cycle; I hit some personal bests in the weight room. I was just feeling good going through it, stuck with the plan—no better way than doing it on home soil—so I was just happy to come away with a personal best.”

Djimon said he had a few miscues feeding off the energy of his teammates, his coach and everyone supporting him and was happy with how things went. “I wasn’t really paying attention to the series until I saw the results and I was like ‘wow.’ I had four throws over 19m and they were all over my personal best and once that happens, it’s a good thing,’ he said.

Djimon had to settle for 2nd behind personal best Diamante’s Discus Throw of 57.42m (188’10”) with 56.10m (184’0”).

He said that he’s at a point in his Discus development where they’re trying to figure some things out technically. Djimon, who has a 62.77m (205’11”) personal best said that 56m is not really ‘a bad day’ and he’ll take it.

“It has been a bit rocky, but I’m still fighting, still waiting for things to come together so that I could really get that big one,” he said. “I often tell people and myself, if you don’t want to go through a rough moment, then you don’t deserve the good moments that come. Right now I’m just fighting through it. If 56 is a bad day for me, then I’ll take it.”

Djimon said that his brother’s Discus Throw performance—with his winner coming on the last attempt—wasn’t a surprise as he’s been improving every meet. “I knew 56 wouldn’t have won the competition—although I was leading from rounds 1-5, he was just the better man that day and put one together on his last attempt,” he reflected. “He felt the pressure from me and he knew he had to put one out there. For him to get a personal best in such an environment, it’s amazing. Hats off to him.”

After winning both the Discus and Hammer Throws—the latter with 58.55m (192’1”) the second best mark of his career—Diamante described it as a ‘successful weekend.’

“To be honest, the Hammer was a result of injuring my wrist and not being able to do much Shot Put, allowed me to focus on Hammer and Discus, but I really wanted to get the three turns down in the Hammer, so I did less Discuss,” Diamante explained. “I know my Discus would always come along—that’s a technique I really can’t forget—it just so happens now that I’m playing catch up in the Shot Put. I’m making good progress with that, so really, Shot Put and Discus work hand in hand because it’s the same technique, but the Hammer is something completely different. Hammer is something I’ve been able to put more time and effort into and now the work is paying off and I’m really happy about that.”

Despite pulling off the double victory, Diamante said he was struggling in the Discus and wasn’t getting some things done technically.

“On the last attempt, my brother and my teammate put one out there and I really had to lock in and compete to the best of my ability,” he reflected. “I was able to put one out there—I was surprised to hear it went to 57.42m—I thought it would have been a high 56, but I really can’t complain about 57, so I’m happy about that.”


 Competing in the Tom Jones Memorial Olympic Development 100m in Gainesville, Florida, Rikkoi Brathwaite ran a windy 10.22 seconds (2.5) for third in his heat and 13th overall.

In the Women’s Olympic Development 200m, Beyonce deFreitas recorded a season’s best 23.15 seconds (1.8), for second in her heat and seventh overall.