72 primary schools to compete in national meet
Guardian Sports Reporter
Published: May 18, 2013
A record number of primary schools from throughout The Bahamas will compete in the annual National Frank ‘Pancho’ Rahming Primary School Track and Field Championships, set to start on Wednesday.
The three-day meet has attracted more than 1,000 athletes from about 72 schools. Among the count are the 400 athletes from the various primary schools in the Family Islands who will be in New Providence on Tuesday. The meet which will run Wednesday-Friday at the original Thomas A. Robinson Track and Field Stadium, has a 10 a.m. start each day.
This is the second year the meet is being held in honor of Rahming, a long and dedicated individual, who has worked tirelessly on coordinating this and other track and field events. “I usually say it doesn’t matter who the event is named after, I usually say it is the Primary School Track and Field Championships,” said Rahming as he thanked the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture for putting his name on the event. “I am hoping that it is a good sign, and that the event is going to be bigger and better every year. The important thing about this event is it accomplishes what it is supposed to accomplish, and that is to ensure that primary school athletes get a chance to compete in an event that is well planned, organized properly and similar to the senior nationals. They can come to Nassau from the various islands and have the type of competition that they need to improve their performances. When you don’t know your competition that is when you have to train harder.
“I notice that we have 32 teams, and we have 70 plus schools (in The Bahamas). That is good because you have majority of the Bahamian schools and athletes competing. This is really what the meet is for, to ensure that all the primary school athletes get a chance to compete in an event that is properly organized and planned. When they leave Nassau they can go back and say that they have competed against the best in The Bahamas at their age level. Thank you, minister, and thank you, Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture.”
The first national track meet, which brought athletes together from all around The Bahamas, was held in 1981. According to Rahming, this meet started out small with just the winners from each school coming over to compete. It eventually grew and developed where schools are able to bring a full team now. Now in its 31st year, Director of Sports in the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture Tim Munnings said the ministry is very excited to once again be hosting this event.
Munnings added: “We are in the 31st year in the Primary School Track and Field Championships. This is the second year that we have named the meet after Mr. Frank ‘Pancho’ Rahming who is one of the founders of the meet. We are very honored to have him here today to continue this tradition. This event we expect to be the largest of all the events since we have hosted. We have a number of athletes represented from all of the islands coming in. Right now, there are probably close to or maybe over 400 young athletes coming in from the Family Islands inclusive of the public and primary schools, we are over 1,000 athletes.
This is going to be a very major event for these young kids. They are always excited to come and always looking forward to it. The parents, family and friends are looking forward to it. And we are expecting to have a very good time.”
Also launching their support behind Rahming and thanking the Minister for naming the meet after him were the executives of the Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations (BAAA) and the members of the Bahamas Association of Certified Officials (BACO). President of the BAAA Mike Sands who also spoke on behalf of Bahamasair referred to Rahming as a renowned technical expert who has freely given of himself on a daily basis. Sands also noted that Bahamasair is the aircraft of choice for this year’s meet.
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