Photo: Jamaica Athletics Adminitrative Association (JAAA) President Garth Gayle “We will be meeting with our competitions commission shortly. Following that meeting we will have an earnest meeting with our coaches and our technical leader, to ensure that our athletes are taken care of prior to departure for Tokyo.”
When news broke a few days ago that the Jamaican training camp set for the Tottori Prefecture in Japan had been cancelled it sent ripples of disappointment and concern within the track and field community as the Olympic Games, set for Tokyo Japan draws near.
But the head of the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) Garth Gayle has given assurances that solutions to the latest setback to the preparations for the Games are being sought.
“We will be meeting with our competitions commission shortly. Following that meeting we will have an earnest meeting with our coaches and our technical leader, to ensure that our athletes are taken care of prior to departure for Tokyo,” Gayle disclosed at the launch of the National Senior and Junior Athletics Championships at the Pegasus Hotel on Thursday.
“We are looking at how best we can find another suitable arrangement for our athletes to minimize travel because for athletes it’s important and imperative that they are not, on a plane, off a plane, on a plane off a plane.
Gayle’s immediate concern is to minimize movement of the athletes when they depart the island for the Japan.
“We need to ensure that when they lift up and they get to a venue, that venue is able to hold them comfortably with all the pandemic scenarios, then move from there with the shortest of distance and wear and tear into the Olympic Village.
“So, that’s what we will be deliberating and that will involve finance, but we will see how best we can make that happen.”
Ultimate responsibility will lie with the governing body for sport on the island, the Jamaica Olympic Association and so the JAAA will be working closely with that body to ensure that the best solution can be found, Gayle disclosed.
“We must also work with the Jamaica Olympic Association. Following our championships, we select a team and hand the team over to the JOA. It then becomes the JOA team. So, at the moment we must also work with them as well.”
There was also he signing of documents between the JAAA and the Ministry of Sports at the launch and Gayle explained the significance of that signing as well.
“It’s simply strengthening our national federation working with the government agency, to ensure that as we receive funding, it is going to the area and the purpose to which it was intended.
“All the ministry is doing is to ensure that we the recipients and carrying out and performing that task as we sought the assistance for.”