BAAA chief travels to Grand Bahama to officially launch nationals programme

BAAA President DRUMECO ARCHER

Clearly the new concept President Drumeco Archer wants for the Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations (BAAA) is a work in progress.

Archer flew into Grand Bahama on Monday to network with stakeholders and to officially launch the 2019 BAAA Senior National Championships programme. The national track and field classic is scheduled for the Grand Bahama Sports Complex (GBSC) July 25-26.

There is a cost factor that has to be met in order to successfully stage the nationals, and, Archer is aware of the challenge. Thus, going forward, the president admits to being on a mission to solidify the BAAA financially to be able to have continuity of a national development program, outside of government grants and what comes in from corporate entities.

The BAAA is a prime product. Indeed, Archer and his executive colleagues have in their hands a commodity that, if marketed properly, could revitalize the entire national feeder system of primary athletes, throughout the junior and senior stages, all the way to the elite world status.

The view held here, is that in The Bahamas there is enough raw talent for each core discipline to have several athletes in the elite world circle. I insist, this is the case for all of the major sports programmes in the country. It stands to reason though, that because of the great steps that track and field has made in recent decades, athletics is a cut above its peer sporting bodies.

Accordingly, as thrilled as Bahamians are over the performances of Shaunae Miller-Uibo, Steve Gardiner, and Donald Thomas, there should be, at this moment in time, more Bahamians capable of winning or finishing in the top three consistently, in events laced with the best talents in the world.

This is the backdrop from which Archer operates. The expectation is for him to guide track and field in The Bahamas to being even, more respected the world over, than the country presently is.

He seeks to broaden the stakeholder base, inclusive of all generations, to foster a greater national vested interest in propelling Bahamian athletics.

So far, Archer has been good at talking about what he would like to see evolve for track and field. As the BAAA top executive, he is the one who has to lead the way forward, totally away from the reticent mindset of his recent predecessors. Past BAAA administrations were led by executives who seemed determined to guard their dealings. A lot went on that the masses of the track and field fraternity knew nothing of. There are still financial reports that have not been fully communicated to the track and field family or the general public.

It is from such a place, that Archer finds himself making efforts to restructure and make the BAAA more palatable to businesses and staunch track and field fans in Grand Bahama, the capital island of New Providence and across the archipelago.

While the BAAA is a high-level product, Archer faces the huge task of functioning so that those who supported his G.O.A.T. (Greatest of All Time BAAA executive slate), continue to have confidence that a new day has dawned for Bahamian track and field.

The interaction in Grand Bahama seemed to go quite well for Archer.

Let’s see what follows.

The National Championships will be a huge test.

(To respond to this column kindly contact Fred Sturrup at sturrup1504@gmail.com or on WhatsApp at 727-6363).

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