EDITORIAL: Efforts rewarded
Last Friday there was a mighty roar at the National Stadium as Christ Church Foundation overtook the long reigning queens of the track, Springer Memorial, to claim the title of Girls’ Champions in the Barbados Secondary Schools Athletic Championships (BSSAC).
The feat was significant for three reasons. Firstly, it put an end to a 12-year winning streak which many thought near impossible to overcome; secondly, it was done emphatically, with a clear lead of 336 to Springer’s 277, with the school also snatching the Victor and Victrix Ludorum titles through Nathan Crawford’s and Ashantia Phillips’ efforts; and thirdly, it showed that as long as there is a goal and committed effort towards attaining that goal, that excellence will always be rewarded.
Last year, Christ Church Foundation athletes were reported as saying that they would unseat Springer Secondary as champions. Evidently, their focus and resilience paid off. Since then, and especially throughout the BSSAC, they have remained steadfast in every discipline on the track and on the field. We take this opportunity to say congratulations to them and to all the schools that participated. Even though there can only be one championship winner, as long as you give of your best – seeking to beating personal records – you are also a winner and are helping to set the bar higher for everyone else.
Kudos must also be given to Springer Secondary’s girls for being gracious in their defeat and showing a true sporting spirit. This demonstration of humility by that school, along with the overall display of sportsmanship by all schools throughout the BSSAC as well as the NAPSAC competitions this year, was quite remarkable; for equally as impressive as the athletes’ performances was their deportment and they all should be lauded for being excellent ambassadors for their schools. Each individual interviewed was well-spoken and expressive and demonstrated courtesy and good manners as well. This bodes well for this country as those selected to represent Barbados in the CARIFTA games will undoubtedly be fully capable to do so.
In a time when star athletes are being made infamous for bad behaviour and poor conduct as much as for their talent – case in point, the scandals of widespread doping in the international track and field arena – it is heartening to see that these athletes still shine with natural brilliance. They are inspiration to any person who aims to be the best that they can be, whether in sports, business or any other endeavour.
It is hoped that the enthusiasm for the recent schools’ athletic meets continues and shows itself in long-term support for this present crop of athletes and those potential athletes of the future. Furthermore, it should be extended and manifested in a tangible way by Government and the private sector, in the form of improved and additional training facilities – the reprehensible state of the stands at the national stadium should be addressed immediately as temporary fixes are long past acceptable.
Once again, congratulations to all athletes who participated in both the primary and secondary competitions and best wishes to all selected to compete regionally at CARIFTA. Congrats also to Ramon Gittens who blazed his way to a bronze medal in the 60m of the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Portland United States last Friday, clocking his way to a new national record of 6.51 seconds.