Track and field proposal ready for approval, says JAAA President Gayle


Track and field proposal ready for approval, says JAAA President Gayle

Observer writer

Sunday, January 24, 2021

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After much delay and lots of disappointment for the various people involved in the sport of track and field, it appears that there is light at the end of the tunnel for the safe return of the sport to the island.

Speaking with reporters on Friday at the National Stadium, president of the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) Garth Gayle indicated that his organisation is just about ready to present Minister of Sport Olivia Grange with a proposal that should see approval being granted for the sport to resume.

Gayle indicated that there has been constant dialogue with the various track and field stakeholders since he took office, to ensure that no stone is left unturned in charting the way forward in a safe and secure manner.

A new component has been added in the drive for safety, and this will be ongoing for the next few weeks as all safety measures are put in place.

“We have conducted three training sessions for COVID-19 protocol marshals and we have seen over 550 participants. We are going to be having a fourth and possibly a fifth training session for these critical players.

“Every day we are working to find a solution to the current situation, but you must understand that we need our athletes to perform in a safe and comfortable environment,” said Gayle.

He said that the finishing touches will be made to the proposal soon, after which the minister will be presented with the document.

“We believe that we are on target, even with the delay. We will be having, on Tuesday, another Zoom meeting, where we now think we are at a point with a proposal which we will be making to the minister of sports,” Gayle noted.

The JAAA boss says that based on the efforts being made by both the JAAA and the ministry, he sees a return of track and field in the very near future.

“We are in dialogue with the minister of sport and she has been exceedingly helpful. She is understanding and she is working with us.

“She is anxiously awaiting it and we will be making that available to her for her to take to the next stage of getting our sport up and running,” Gayle stated.

Track and field had a test run last December with the staging of the Tyser-Mills Classic at Calabar High school. That had led to great optimism that things would return to normal this month, but the extension of the curfew and safety measures by the prime minister has led to the postponement of all track and field meets in January.

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