Olympic hopefuls to drive competitive Senior Track and Field Championships

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With Olympic qualification closing at the end of June, the Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG) is confident that the personal aspirations of athletes to qualify for the Paris Games will drive extremely competitive performances.

Based on entry standards, no Guyanese Track and Field athlete has qualified for the Olympics to date.

The Senior Championships will be held June 15-16 at the National Track and Field Facility, West Coast Demerara.

Acting AAG President Sheryl Hermonstine indicated that approximately 13 overseas-based Guyanese athletes have returned home to compete in the Association’s premier event.

Four Trinidadians are also expected to compete among the 200 registered for the event.

She noted that the event is expected to be “highly competitive,” which bodes well for the sport’s local development.

Competition Director Mark Scott echoed Hermonstine’s sentiments as he highlighted that the locally based athletes are eager to express themselves against those overseas.

Scott indicated the event should start promptly at 10:00h with the men’s 10,000m, followed by the semi-finals, the 1,500m finals, and the 100m finals.

The women’s 5,000m will also be on Saturday, while the Long Jump will be on Sunday morning, followed by other events.

“We expect everyone to give their peak performance; this meet is also qualification for the Olympics, so we expect the athletes to come and do their best”, Scott expressed.

Lack of corporate support

According to James Cole, AAG General Secretary of the Athletics Association of Guyana, the top athlete in a race will pocket G$15,000, while second gets G$10,000 and third gets G$5,000.

Cole indicated that while they have received some support, more attractive prizes are still needed for Guyana’s premier senior athletes.

They have received support from the Guyana Olympic Association and the National Sports Commission and called on the corporate community to support them.

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