AROUCA’S Tya Jané Ramey will represent this country at the 71st Miss Universe pageant in San Jose, Costa Rica, next year.
Ramey, a 24-year-old Miss World TT 2019 and Miss World Caribbean title-holder, stole the show at Miss Universe TT’s “Coronation Day,” Sunday, at a sold-out and raucous Queen’s Hall, St Ann’s.
The US-born Ramey grinned from ear to ear before wiping away tears as her fellow contestants embraced her to celebrate her latest achievement.
She was crowned by 1998 Miss Universe TT Wendy Fitzwilliam, who also served on the judges’ panel.
Ramey represented TT in London at Miss World 2019, where she placed among the top 40 contestants.
Amanda Ameerali of Diego Martin and Tishanna Mitchell of St Augustine were named first and second runners-up respectively.
Cadiesha Joseph (San Fernando), Maya Asha Underwood (Port of Spain West) and Sihle Letren (Diamond Vale) rounded off the top six.
The pageant started with 23 candidates before being cut to 12 after swimsuit, nightgown and question-and-answer segments. Alliyah Mentor (Chaguanas West), Christina Thomas (Diego Martin West), Oshun Mills (Tobago West), Tanika Durity (St Joseph), Tyler Thomas (Valsayn South) and Ulani Fletcher (Tobago East) made the top 12 cut.
The remaining candidates are: Arianne Dookheran (Sangre Grande), Arielle Khan (San Juan), Imani Whiskey (D’Abadie), Jhenique Joseph (Port of Spain East), Justine Edwards (Chaguanas East), Kenelle Alphonse (Toco), Kirsha Darvia (Arima), Rebecca Douglas (Tacarigua), Sian Lewis (Diego Martin Central), Sonique Timothy (La Horquetta), Stephanie Hodge (Tacarigua North) and Tishelle Tobias (Valsayn).
Married women and mothers with children were permitted to enter the pageant for the first time, which organisers described as a positive shift towards modern standards for such competitions.
The show was staged by new franchise holders, local pageant academy Crowns and Sashes.
TT will return to the international competition for the first time in five years.
The Miss Universe 2022 pageant will be held in the first quarter of 2023, as to avoid a schedule conflict with the Fifa World Cup, which takes place in November and December.