Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : November 11th 2015 Contents A46
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Wednesday, November 11, 2015
The spanking new National Cycledrome in
Couva could have its first taste of action in
May next year when the T&T Cycling Feder-
ation (TTCF) hosts the Caribbean Cycling
Championship for the first time.
The facility has been completed and is ready
for action but must first be handed over to the
Government by the contractor, which it is under-
stood, will be done soon. The T&T Guardian
has been told that the delay stems from the
non-completion of the other sporting facilities
such as the Acquatic Centre and the Tennis
facility at Tacarigua. It is understood that one
contractor is doing the three facilities and there-
fore there is to be one handing-over ceremony.
The regional cycling championship which will
be held specifically for track cycling will be one
of the biggest cycling events to be held on local
shores says president of the TTCF Robert Farrier.
Twelve countries from the region are expected
to be here to determine the best track cyclists
in the Caribbean. Farrier said the event would
be used as a preparation stage for a number of
local, regional and international cyclists ahead
of the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
"By February we will know who are the
cyclists that would have qualified for the
Olympics. With just a couple months ahead
of the Olympics they may not want to risk
injuries at tough meets and therefore the
regional championship would be the ideal
stage for them to warm up," Farrier explained.
He added that cyclists who did not make the
qualifying times to book a spot at the Games
would also want to prove themselves, partic-
ularly those locally and regionally.
The cycling federation has already set sights
on a number of areas to ensure the successful
staging of the event, including attempts to
cover a budget of $700,000 to $800,000.
Farrier noted that they have already started
talks with corporate T&T and hopes that the
Ministry of Sport along with the Sport Com-
pany of T&T would come on board. "As it is
the first time we will be hosting the regional
championship, we want to make sure that we
make a name for ourselves in T&T, in the
region and internationally.
However the only set back is that the facility
may not be UCI-certified as yet, which means
that if records are broken at the meet, they
will not be recognised by the world governing
Farrier said his federation is the only body to
get the championship certified and promised
that as soon as the cycledrome is handed, the
TTCF will write the UCI to have their officials
come here and get the facility certified.
If the facility is not ready, the event will be
shifted to Irwin Park in Siparia. Farrier said con-
tractors have explained to him that completion
date for this facility will be next month, in spite
of the fact that there is still a lot of work to be
"I will be visiting the facility again next week
to see about the readiness for the regional cham-
pionship. When I was there recently workmen
were putting down a second layer on the tracks.
After this is done they will have a final layer for
it to be finished," Farrier explained. He said this
venue or the cycledrome will be used to host
the National Junior and Senior Championship
sometime after the Easter Grand Prix in April.
He said however that the venue for the Easter
Grand Prix will remain the Arima Velodrome
as it has been traditionally been held there.
The National Cycledrome in Couva is expected to host the Caribbean Cycling Championship
early next year.
TTCF eyes Couva for
May Championships Following on the heels of the decision
of the World Anti Doping Agency com-
mittee to have the Russia Athletics Feder-
ation as well as certain officials and athletes
suspended from athletic events of the inter-
national body---the IAAF, the T&T Cycling
Federation (TTCF) has taken a decision for
drug testing to be done at local meets.
President of the cycling federation Robert
Farrier said his executives met recently and
took the decision for this to be done as it
has now become critical for the sport to
"We do not conduct drug testing in cycling
here in T&T but what I do know is that our
cyclists are tested when they go abroad on
international competitions" Farrier said.
He did not give a time frame when testing
will begin but said soon. Testing will be
done at all the
meets such as the
Grand Prix which is
normally held at the
and the National
Junior and Senior
And he is hoping
that these tests
would also be done at
the coming Caribbean
onship which is ten-
tatively set for May next year at the National
Cycledrome in Couva or at the Irwin Park
facility in Siparia.
Other major cycling events that are held
in T&T could also be subjected to drug test-
ing such as the Tobago International Cycle
Classic, the Beacon Savannah Classic and
the Njisane Phillips Classic.
Farrier described the testing process as
extremely expensive but made it clear his
federation sees it as absolutely necessary
today. To do testing, National Sporting
Organisations are required to purchase a kit
which comprises two vials (an A and B test)
at a cost of US$950.
The Guardian learnt that there is a cost
attached for the actual testing itself as well
as when it goes back to the lab abroad for
confirmation on the tests. Only recently the
National Association of Athletic Adminis-
tration (NAAA) revealed that it spends
approximately $50,000 in testing for the
year for about six athletes. These tests are
expected to done randomly, which means
that any athlete, and not all athletes, will
To date, athletics appear to be the only
sport in which drug testing is done in T&T
as its president Ephraim Serrette said it is
something his administration does not joke
with. In recent times tests for marijuana
use and abuse were conducted by the Super
10 Basketball officials but no one was ever
suspended for it.
There have been persistent calls for drug
testing to be done in sports in T&T and it
is hoped that with the recent revealation of
the WADA committee which also implicated
officials of the IAAF to be involved in major
cover-up of athletes using performance
enhancement drugs, that local sports will
see the importance of it now.
...president of the
Popular sports administrator
Anthony Harford could well be
the next person in charge of foot-
ball in the North Zone.
Harford is among three persons
who will be contesting the post
of president when the Northern
Football Association (NFA) holds
its Annual General Meeting (AGM)
and Election of Officers at a date
and time to be announced.
The others are former national
midfielder now turn coach Clint
Marcelle and another ex T&T
players Nevick Denoon who is
coach of Morvant Elements.
Sources close to the NFA have
said that the clubs will be throwing
their support behind Harford, as
they believe he will do a good job.
Harford when contacted yesterday
said he offered his services to the
north zone because he lives in the
north and has been in sports for
his entire life and therefore wants
to give back to an area he has
spent most of his life.
He said he deliberately did not
go up for the top post in the much
anticipating T&T Football Asso-
ciation AGM and Election of Offi-
cers on November 29 because he
is in the business of sports and
did not want to appear to be
receiving jobs from his employers,
so he decided to go up for the
Yesterday Harford admitted to
not knowing much of the oper-
ations within the NFA or what
marketing strategy is being used
by the northern association but
said if he is selected, he will have
to sit down with his team and
chart a way forward.
According to Harford "I feel
that I have a responsibility towards
sport development in the north
zone because I have been in sports
all my life."
Elections in the zone will only
be known when its clubs have all
seen an amended constitution
which was mandated by the par-
ent TTFA. Elections in the various
regional association such as the
Northern Football Association
(NFA), Southern Football Asso-
ciation (SFA), Tobago Football
Association (TFA), Eastern Football
Association (EFA), the Central
Football Association (CFA) and
the Eastern Counties Football
Union (ECFU) were suspended
after an order by the world gov-
erning body for football- FIFA
earlier this year.
The Guardian learnt that the
clubs are all expected to have had
the opportunity to look at and
study the amended constitution
by November 21 after which an
election date will be called in the
north zone. Yesterday president
Roland Forde said he will not be
seeking re-election and he has
already communicated that to the
Yesterday a member of the NFA
who wished to speak on condi-
tions of anonymity said he and
all clubs have agreed to pledge
their support for Harford as he
was the best candidate for the job.
"These are my last days in this
office and if Marcelle or Denoon
is selected it will definitely confirm
my exit. However if Harford is
elected I do mind working with
him because he seems to know
what he is about," he concluded.
Harford could be next NFA president
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