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IAAF / BTC World Relays Bahamas 2015 hailed a success by organizors
May 21, 2015 - 12:20:15 PM

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Photo: Wendell Cleare

Nassau, Bahamas – The spirit of relays came to the Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium in Nassau, on May 2nd and May 3rd as the venue hosted the second edition of the IAAF World Relays.

Over 700 athletes, coaches and officials represented 43 countries in ten relays – during the two days of competition at the IAAF/BTC World Relays Bahamas 2015.

Today (May 18th 2015) the Local Organizers Committee hailed the event a success and announced that planning for the 2017 edition has already started.

“The athletes, coaches, team officials, executives, council members of the IAAF, the visiting media personnel and spectators left this country once again singing the praises of our little island nation,” said Mike Sands, (LOC) chief executive and vice-chairman, during a press conference.

“It demonstrated that we, as Bahamians, are capable of planning and organizing major international sporting events and we can be considered among the best in the world. We knew that it would take a great team effort and together with our sponsors, the staff of the LOC, other corporate citizens and the Bahamian people we left another positive impression on the international community,” he said.

After winning seven of the 10 events, the United States of America (USA) once again underlined their domination of relay events by winning the golden baton for the second year. Jamaica, finished with 46 points for second. Poland rounded out the top three with 34 points. The Bahamas was tied for 10th.

LOC, Managing Director Lionel Haven, thanked the hard-working, dedicated and committed team of the LOC for putting in the effort he said was needed to make the event a success.

“Our venue team raised the standard this year with the pageantry and the significant enhancements to Market Street together with the outstanding music entertainment by our Bahamian performing artists created a cultural experience that supplemented the world class competition and the passion and enthusiasm of the spectators.”

According to LOC Chairman, Keith Parker over 30,000 spectators attended the “Bahamazing” event that he said was broadcasted in over 160 countries.

“The international journalist, Michelle Sammet who along with her colleagues at Spikes Magazine in the UK, branded the initial event “Bahmazing”, having had the experience of attending the relays this year she described it as “Bahamania”. These are type reports we have been receiving in the international media and it speaks to the success of The Bahamas as a nation.”

The Bahamas will once again host the event in 2017 and Sands said the LOC is grateful for the confidence that the IAAF has placed in the Bahamas in awarding the third edition as well.

“Despite achieving new levels of success this year, we must not rest on our laurels. We still have much work to do as 2017 is not far away. As a team, the LOC is ensuring that we document the positives and the negatives of this year’s event and begin brainstorming ideas on how we can improve both the planning and execution of the World Relays in 2017. We are negotiating with the IAAF to try and make The Bahamas the permanent home of the World Relays and we believe that if we can produce another outstanding experience two years from now, that dream can become reality.”

The majority of the top athletes in the world competed in the event, including Jamaica’s Usain Bolt and Veronica Campbell-Brown, Americans Tyson Gay and Allyson Felix and Chris ‘Fireman’ Brown and Shaunae Miller of the Bahamas.

There was also a special appearance by ‘Golden Girls’ Sevatheda Fynes, Chandra Sturrup, Eldece Clarke and Pauline Davis-Thompson. In addition to the various IAAF dignitaries on hand, among the special guests were world renowned retired competitors Michael Johnson from the United States, Frankie Fredericks from Namibia and Ato Bolden from Trinidad & Tobago.

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