Towards London 2012

The National Olympic Committee has accesses some scholarships but these are limited. The governing body for athletics, TASVG, has also accessed a limited number of IAAF scholarships and assisted some athletes, with the help of the government, in getting to schools in the USA.

Scholarships to US colleges require a combination of good academic grades and sound athletic performances whether in Basketball, Volleyball, tennis or track and field. Too many of our athletes ignore their academics.

Jamaican athletes who ignore their academics still access scholarships to Junior Colleges in the USA because of their superior athletic performances. Once in the USA many of them continue in athletics to the detriment of their studies and eventually turn professional.

The bulk of the Jamaican medalists at the Beijing Olympics are professional.

Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Islands and the Bahamas are all involved in a grand scheme of governmental financial assistance to the top athletes annually. That is how they pay their international coaches to prepare them.

Yes. Athletes do have to pay their coaches once they have determined to become professional. It is a matter of horses for courses.

Unless we are prepared to fund their training and general preparation Vincentian athletes would not be among the best in the world. They would retain their potential but never move beyond that, except perhaps in very exceptional cases.