ATLANTIC LNG held its annual Track and Field Development Camp on Friday and Saturday at the Manny Ramjohn Stadium, Marabella, where four of the nation’s top athletes teamed up to train a selected group of 50 aspiring primary school athletes from around the country.
The Atlantic Track and Field Development Camp began in 2015 as a part of the company's commitment to youth development through sport. The top primary school athletes from the seven educational districts, during the annual Atlantic National Primary Schools Track and Field Championships, were chosen to participate in this year's camp.
For the first time, recently signed Atlantic Sports Ambassadors Jereem Richards and Khalifa St Fort joined the already endorsed ambassadors and Olympic medallists, Richard Thompson and Keshorn Walcott, in hosting the annual camp.
Triple Olympic medallist and current holder of the national 100m record, Richard Thompson, was given the role of chief trainer and coach of Atlantic's annual camp. He emphasised the initiative made an important contribution towards local athletic development.
Thompson stated, "Since we started the camp in 2015 it has continued to broaden the development of the children who participate. Last year, Keshorn was added and we included a stronger aspect of training for field events, which would have been missing before.
“This year, we are joined by two fast rising talents in Jereem and Khalifa. We were therefore able to expand this event into a full weekend training camp and we know this will help improve the overall experience for the children.”
Participants underwent a two-day stint, as they were taught accurate techniques in both sprinting and field events. The first day of activities commenced with warm-up exercises conducted by Thompson and Richards where the young athletes were taught the importance of properly stretching their muscles before training.
After, the athletes were treated to sprint drills and given insights in the fundamental techniques needed for high performances. Strength exercises and shuttle races then took place before an Olympic film were shown to the youngsters.
According to Richards, the 2018 Commonwealth Games 200m gold medallist, "We came here to shed some light on the younger kids and teach them about the fundamentals of track and field, emphasising on the basics.
“We also wanted to help motivate them as well, by showing them that we also came from humble beginnings, just like them, and hopefully this motivates these kids in a way that maybe one day they too can become Olympic champions, World champions and excel by making Trinidad and Tobago proud."
Atlantic lauded the four national athletes for their willingness to support the camp and its potential to help build a new generation of track and field champions.