It was the playwright Charles Dickens, in his epic “A Tale of Two Cities” who describes the times as being both the best and the worst….at the same time.
It is fair to conclude that Coach Dexter Bodie must have reflected on this story…as he struggled to put on his annual track meet.
In the first instance, the meet had to be postponed, since the date originally scheduled, February 25, 2012 was the same as that chosen by the government to have the opening of the new Thomas Robinson Stadium.
There was much talk that the schedule of events had been submitted to the Ministry of Sports long ago, but the timing conflicted with the date selected for the opening, and that national priority took priority.
The Roadrunners Track Classic had to be rescheduled.
On the second attempt, the country was soaked with an unexpected series of downpours, which forced the meet to be again postponed….
The date for the meet was re- scheduled for May 26, 2012.
Another set of circumstances threatened the continuance of the meet, but with the support of Shell, as a principal sponsor, who came forward as a good corporate citizen, the meet went on.
· The turnout was severely challenged. This was the same week-end that the ever popular Bay Taf Classic was scheduled for Orlando Florida.
It has become a regular ritual for a number of local track clubs to attend this meet, and both parents and athletes begin planning attendance a year in advance.
· In Grand Bahama, the Golden Eagles Organization scheduled their meet for the same week-end, and a number of clubs had committed to attend and support that meet.
· The father of the president of Club Monica passed away, and the funeral was held on that Saturday morning, so the athletes from that organization, along with members of the sporting fraternity, attended to stand in solidarity with Coach Diane Woodside and her family.
· After the devastating defeat of the FNM party at the polls on May 7, 2012, they scheduled a one day conclave-convention, for May 26, 2012. While this may not have had a significant effect on the meet, this point is mentioned to show how a series of events, collectively can effect what the poet/playwright refers to as “the best made plans of men and mice”.
The meet went on
Despite all of the above, The Roadrunners Athletic Organization took the decision to move forward with the meet.
Such are the challenges of meet organization….and it is indicative of the law of unintended consequences…which makes it perfectly clear that there are many events over which we have no control.
It was concluded that despite all of the misfortunes, a duty was owed to the athletes, parents, sponsors and supporters.
The ever supportive parents had their food tents set up and provided their usual delicacies.
The athletes performed well and it was encouraging to see that many of the athletes, who did not travel and were free, did indeed come out and competed, and made the competition successful.
When an event has to be cancelled or postponed, for whatever reason, it provides one the opportunity to reflect on the amount of work that goes on behind the scene, to plan and execute such an event.
The amount of team work involved to put on a sports meet is indicative of the sacrifice and contribution that individuals such as Coach Bodie put in, to assist with the development of our kids.
Additionally, it highlights the fact that corporate sponsors play a vital role in the effort and a special thank you must always go out to these individuals.
Finally, whether there are a large or small number of athletes participating, the ever faithful BACO officials must be present.
Bahamas Athletics congratulates Coach Dexter Bodie, his team, the parents, BACO officials, sponsors, supporters and athletes for a job well done, in face of all adversities.
It is a practical lesson to the athletes, that despite hurdles, you must press on…
We look forward to an exciting and successful meet next year.