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NPTFA next big project for BAAA

Forming an association to take care of the daily governance in track and field in New Providence, alone, sits high on the Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations(BAAA)President Mike Sands’list. However, with the busy 2010 season, the recently elected executives were unable to deal with this matter, which was a part of their mandate.

Sands reassured coaches, athletes, officials and track and field enthusiasts that the New Providence Track and Field Association(NPTFA)will be established.”To be honest with you that has not been on the agenda at this point, but it is something that we have to look at,” said Sands.”You would see that the Coaches Association has been able to get off the ground, they are off and running. Of course we had priorities coming into office, but we had a short window to do some things. We were really, really focused, because we knew the challenges that we had for the ensuing year was to find the way to ensure that the 10 teams were properly funded. Two of them were the responsibility of the Bahamas Olympic Committee(BOC), so reality was we had to fund eight national teams. Our focus was to get those teams out and financed. Fundraising was and still will be that critical mass.

“Unfortunately, we did not give the attention to the New Providence Association that it deserves. It is something that we have to bring back to the burner. It was just that, the fundraising was a very big concern. I am pleased to say that we were able to leap over those hurdles and got the kind of support we got. We want or hope to get that same kind of support in this upcoming year.”

Currently, there are four associations under the BAAA’s umbrella, inclusive of the Bahamas Association of Certified Officials(BACO); Bahamas Track and Field Coaches Association(BTFCA); Grand Bahama Track and Field Association(GBTFA)and the Parents Association of the BAAA.

Sands said: ”A lot of work has already been done, so we just have to review the files and the information, see where we go from there. So it is not a question of when it starts, the question is when will it resume?”

According to Sands, when the association does come on stream, it will allow the BAAA’s executives to focus on other issues and events that are outstanding. He dispelled the word critical, when it came to having it implemented, but viewed it as necessary for the betterment of the sport.

“I won’t say or use the word critical,” stated Sands.”The organization it has been functioning. Can it function more efficiently with it in place?Chances are it could. It relieves the executives of some responsibilities that can then be passed on to that organization.”

The next event on the BAAA schedule will be the hosting of the annual award banquet. The event will be Sunday, December 26, at the Sheraton Nassau Beach Resort. Top elite, junior and youth athletes will vie for titles in some 20 categories, inclusive of the Charlie Major Athlete of the Year; Senior Male Athlete of the Year; Senior Female Athlete of the Year; Junior Female and Male Athletes of the Year as well as the Youth Female and Male Athlete of the Year. Other divisions are the Collegiate Male and Female Athlete of the Year; top Collegiate Male and Female Track Athlete, as well as the top Collegiate Male and Female Field Athlete of the Year. The same honors will be bestowed upon the junior athletes with special attention to those competing in the cross country events.

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