AAG president touts improved coaching, international exposure to improve local 10k times

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Guyana is far off the pace regarding the standard for 10km road race times and to help athletes get closer to international levels, the Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG) President, Aubrey Hutson, said the fix lies in a combination of the coaches improving their training regime and athletes getting exposure.

The AAG staged the 18th edition of its South American 10k on Sunday and the Open categories were won by Winston Missigher and Shema Tyrell. Missigher clocked 34 minutes, 22.24 seconds, while Tyrell registered 43:00.87s.

In the grand scheme of things, none are remotely close to the Olympic Games qualifying times or for the 2022 World Championships. The male Olympic qualifying time is 27:28.00s, while the female entry mark is 31:25.00s.

Hutson said it is something that has constantly engaged the AAG’s attention, but it will take a combined effort to solve over time.

“It is something we continue to talk about; some of the coaches are very critical of the AAG for having athletes running that slow, but they need to realise it is their athletes and they are not training them well enough to run faster,” the AAG head stated.

AAG President Aubrey Hutson

“The only thing that can spike this up for us is international competition; we know in 2015 what happened with the two guys coming in from Peru and it was our intention if the borders were open to have that kind of competition, but coronavirus has played it part…we will continue to provide competition for our athletes as best as we can.”

This year, the event was an all-Guyanese competition and the reference Hutson made to 2015, was when the top three spots in the male Open went to foreigners – two Peruvians and one Kenyan. The race was won in 31 minutes, eight seconds.

However, from a developmental aspect, the AAG head is happy about the output from the juniors. Sir Kennard Hartog, a junior, came third in the Open male, while four of the top five females were juniors.

“What we have to continue to (do is) look for successors who are going to replace the Cleveland Fordes and the older female athletes as they move off, and even in the sprinting category too.”

“We have a good crop of athletes coming up and had there been schools nationals this year…we are continuing to do what we can do to continue to let the talent to come out.”

“We are working with our coaches to put together a better club structure so that when these athletes come out they have the right technical information coming from the coaches and that can only to us producing greater young talent.”

Based on the AAG’s proposed 2021 calendar, in January they will have two developmental meets, one of which will be CARIFTA trials on the 31st.

The CARIFTA Track and Field Championships is expected to go ahead from April 3-5 in Bermuda.

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