17:/03/10: Inter Primary Meet Press Conference Held by Curtis Morton
The forum was chaired by NAAA representative, Halstead ‘Sooty’ Byron and present at the Head Table were: ‘Mr. Athletics’ himself—President of the NAAA, Lester Blackett, representative for Chief sponsors, Gulf Insurance—Mr. Arthur Evelyn; Director of Sports—Lincoln Barry and Sports Coordinator on Nevis, Mrs Lydia Thompson Claxton representing the Ministry and Department of Education.
Brief remarks were given by Chairperson Mr. Byron and this was followed by remarks from NAAA Chief, Lester Blackett. He was quick to point out some brand new initiatives that will feature at the 2010 meet:
He also explained that the meet will be carried live via internet and television due to linkages with Caribbean Cable Communications. The website to be utilized is www.nevispsc.com.
Each school is being encouraged to bring along a lap top to the meet and they would be provided with real time access to results and general updates as the meet progresses. Spectators who have lap tops will also receive the same privilege.
Mrs. Lydia Thompson-Claxton then spoke on behalf of the Ministry and Department of Education. She explained that it has been an honour for the Ministry to team up with the NAAA for over 18 years to host the event.
She admonished the athletes to demonstrate sportsmanship and discipline and reminded them that they were no longer showcasing their skills and abilities to the Nevisian population but to the entire world due to the upgrades initiated by the NAAA in terms of technological coverage of the event.
She was high in praise for chief sponsors Gulf Insurance and local representative, Mr. Evelyn. She also gave kudos to Director of Sports, Lincoln Barry and his staff for the tremendous work put in to enhance the tracks for the various sports meets held on the island, but especially for the work done at the Flats in Cole Hill, to make the St.John’s Sports meet a reality.
Mr. Damian Hughes, Manager at the Caribbean Cable Communications which is a major player in this year’s event, was also afforded the opportunity to say a few words. He indicated that his company was happy to be associated with the meet and happy to give back to the Nevisian community. He further indicated that his staff was in the process of placing fibre optic cable into the Elquemedo Willet Park which will facilitate live streaming of the meet and live television coverage.
Mr. Arthur Evelyn in representing chief sponsors Gulf Insurance expressed his joy at been associated with the event over the last 18 years—he himself being associated with his company for 32 years.
He was happy to report that the sponsorship deal for this year will be to the tune of $35,000.00 as was the case last year, having made a two year arrangement. He was unable to project what the new deal would be for next year but indicated that his company is so enthused with the event that no less a person than the Chairman of his company, based in Trinidad, Mr. Gerard Inniss will be an honoured guest at the event this year.
Director of Sports, Mr. Lincoln Barry explained that in previous years as an individual, he would support the school closest to him but that this year, because of his involvement with all of the schools; his hands were virtually tied in terms of personal support. He expressed his dream of Nevis eventually having a 400 meter track and wished the meet every success and pledged his continued support, along with his staff.
Mr. Lester Blackett then took the audience through the paces with the new website and the new facebook page "Nevis Athletics" and the press conference concluded with the panel fielding questions from the numerous journalists present.