President’s / Jefford Track & Field Classic launched
-Marian Burnett arrives May 14
By Rawle Welch
One of the notable features of the Annual President’s / Jefford Track & Field Classic is the fact that it has been able to maintain the support of some of the biggest corporate entities in Guyana.
It is because, the Organisers have been able to deliver on most if not all of the deliverables promised to the most important component of the product which is the business community and that has unquestionably been the core rationale behind their unremitting patronage.
Yesterday, during the launching of the Third Edition of the Classic at the main sponsor Digicel’s Head Office in Kingston, the Company’s Public Relations Manager, Shonnet Moore, after expressing on behalf of the entity its pleasure to be partnering with the Classic, once again pledged continued support for the event.
“We are pleased to be part of the Classic for the third straight year since we see it as important for the development of athletics in Guyana,” Moore told the gathering of sponsors representatives, athletes and the media.
She then called on the general public to come out and support the event, which will also afford them the opportunity to see the next cadre of talent on show, at the Mackenzie Sports Club ground in Linden.
President of the Athletic Association of Guyana, Colin Boyce in his remarks gave an outline of the list of events planned for the May 20 Classic, which includes 26 individual races in addition to 6 for teams, while there will be an international flavour that will see one of Guyana’s most renowned middle distance athletes in Marian Burnett go up against the locals and those expected from abroad.
According to Boyce, they’ve written letters to the various Heads of Athletic Associations from Trinidad and Tobago, Suriname, Barbados and Grenada requesting a minimum of one athlete for the 800 and 1500 metres races in both the male and female categories and sometime this week he is expected to receive responses.
The AAG Boss revealed that the winning club is set to take home $500,000, runner-up $300,000 and 3rd place $100,000, while there will be gate prizes specifically intended to give back to the fans, especially those from the community.
Co-organiser Edison Jefford, whose brainchild it was to organise the Classic, extended gratitude to all the sponsors who’ve offered support, adding that without their assistance it would not be possible to stage the event.
“Most of the sponsors have been with us since the beginning and on behalf of the Organisers, I would like to extend thanks to all of them,” Jefford said.
He mentioned Digicel, Ansa Mc al under their Smalta Brand, Wartsila, Johill Commercial, K&B Mining, Mark Interior Communications, E-Networks, Mohammed’s Enterprise, Giftland OfficeMax, YK Investments, R&D Engineering among others.
Meanwhile, Boyce, when quizzed on whether any contingency arrangements have been put in place in the event of the inclement weather responded by saying that there are plans for such circumstances and is optimistic that should such a scenario develop, the personnel retained are more than equipped to handle the situation.
However, just to allay further fears, Boyce pointed out that the MSC Ground is being prepared with the assistance of the Town Council and they envisage it will be in decent shape to produce fast times and some exciting races.
Among the top locals expected to participate in the Classic are women’s 100 metres champion Alisha Fortune, Chavez Ageday, Stephan James, Tevin Garraway, Kevin Bayley, Elton Bollers, Jevina Straker, Juanita Hooper, Neisa Allen, Tiffany Carto, Shauna Thornhill, Natasha Alder, Alita Moore, Alika Morgan, Janella Jonas, while the Mining Town will be represented by Winston Caesar, Nathaniel Giddings, Bevon Noble and Parish Cadogan.