IAAF OFFICIAL TO PUSH FOR WORLD CLASS SYNTHETIC TRACK FOR ANGUILLA
Finally after much talks in recent years about the development of sports infrastructure for our young people, a strong push will now be made for, at the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) meeting in London on April 11- 12th, Anguilla to have a world class synthetic track.
Mr. Victor Lopez, Member of the IAAF Council and President of the North America, Central American and Caribbean Athletics Association of Pan-American Athletics, was on island last week to meet with the Minister and Director of Sports as well as other officials to discuss having a synthetic track for Anguilla.
He told The Anguillian: “My visit here was two-fold, to meet with the Minister of Sports and also to meet with the Director of Sports for the possibility…of helping Anguilla to have a world class synthetic track just for athletics. Because right now you all are sharing the same field for cricket and other sports.
“There is a project that was approved by the IAAF sometime ago about donating some tracks to a needy Federation, and I think there are three islands in the Caribbean region that do not have a synthetic track – St Vincent and the Grenadines, Dominica and Anguilla, so a top priority is Anguilla.”
He mentioned that Anguilla had produced star athletes like Shara Proctor and Zharnel Hughes “… and that is something I will bring to the attention of the Council of the IAAF to see if we can get that donation of the track.”
Mr Lopez, who was also on island to observe the Primary School sports Competition, held on Thursday 30th April, commended the young athletes on their high level of performance noting that competitions like these are “very important because from the grassroots we can have champions in the CARFITA Games, the World Championships and the Olympics.”
Mrs Lorna Rogers, President of the Anguilla Athletics Association, said: “Today is a step forward for us because we had the honour to have the President with us to see what our sports is like here at the Primary School Sports Day.
“Out of this visit, we’ve had extensive talks about the securing of a synthetic track at last, and I’m looking forward to that. And even if nothing else comes out of this , the possibility of getting a track for our athletes – a home for athletes – is something that is near and dear to my heart.”
Mrs Rogers also used the opportunity to commend Anguilla’s Shara Proctor for her philanthropy: “Shara has been donating to the youths. She is giving back – and from last year she donated $500 EC to the Victor and Victrix Ludorum for the High School Sports Day. And she’s planning do it again, as she told me, it will be an annual event.
“She has donated athletic gear to the Orealia Kelly Primary School. It’s all about giving back, and I really do appreciate when the Association has invested in athletes and they see it fit to give back – and therefore I must give Shara kudos for giving back.”