Track and Field fans across the country will be in for a treat this weekend, when the Turks and Caicos Amateur Athletics Association (TCAAA) in conjunction with the Sports Commission, stages the 2021 Carifta Trials, to be held at the National Stadium in Providenciales.
The meet will not accommodate fans or spectators, but will be carried live on FLOW TV, FLOW’s Facebook Page, the Sports Commission’s Facebook Page, as well as several additional media outlets.
From left – Alvin Parker, Deputy Director of the Sports Commission; Edith Skippings, President of the TCAAA; Darron Hilaire, Marketing Executive at FLOW TCI; Jarrett Forbes, Director for the Sports Commission; and Judith Ewing, the Sports Commission’s Programmes Director
Fifty-seven athletes from 15 schools across the Turks and Caicos Islands will compete for a spot to the Bermuda games in August. Fifteen events will be held over two days, and athletes will be divided into two age categories – Under 17 and Under 20 – as per Carifta games stipulations.
The trial will not be served as a national championship, according to the organisers, but instead will be used strictly for the picking of the Carifta team.
They said also that there will be minor changes to the meet, in that, there will be no relays, as well as no event for invitational races.
According to Edith Skippings, President of the TCAAA, each island would have at least one female athlete participating in the event.
She said athletes from Jamaica, while will not take part in the local meet, be considered for the team. She added that there were at least two athletes currently in Jamaica, performing above expectations.
For his part, Director for the Sports Commission, Jarrett Forbes, said all COVID-19 protocols will be enforced over the two days. He told the news conference, held at the Sports Commission, downtown Providenciales, on Wednesday, May 5, that government’s decision to give sports the green light once again, was more than welcome, and so, the Commission will endeavor to stick to all health protocols, to ensure safety for all.
Judith Ewing, Programmes Director at the Sports Commission pointed out that all the athletes have already taken their COVID tests and have been placed in a bubble, along with the nine coaches that would be taking part in the event. She said COVID protocol officers will be on hand to ensure that proper mask-wearing and, or social distancing are strictly enforced.
Meanwhile, Forbes said that while COVID-19 has disrupted training for many of the athletes, they all found time to stay in shape for the meet. He said, too, that some coaches found innovative social distancing ways to train their athletes, such as utilizing the Zoom platform.
Forbes also pointed out that athletes participating in the trials could land places at United States colleges and, or universities, as scouts will be invited to watch the students compete via the various platforms on which the event would be aired.
Meanwhile, Darron Hilaire, Marketing Executive at FLOW TCI, said that in addition to carrying the meet live, would also be doling out many attractive prizes. He pointed out that FLOW would be sponsoring Carifta Track and Field Championship on a much grander scale this year.