2014 World Relays Diary: Nassau News, by Alfonz Juck, EME News

Thomas A. Robinson Stadium, aka "Thomas A", Nassau, The Bahamas, 
courtesy of World Relays

Hello from Row 4, seat 8 in the amazing new and beautiful stadium in Nassau! The CARIFTA games is ONLY major event held on this new MONDO surface. This is the third surface down in the stadium and it is fast!  


NASSAU (BAH): IAAF President Lamine Diack called the inaugural IAAF World Relays at Thomas Robinson Stadium in Nassau, "the latest example of athletics' continuing evolution." In the past 50 years, Diack said, athletics has seen the transition from amateurism to professionalism, the decline of international dual meetings and corresponding rise of invitationals, and the creation of the IAAF World Championships. Now the IAAF World Relays are ready to take a turn at centre stage. Diack said the proposed mixed relays with men and women is a great idea, however he said it won't be done under his watch. He went on to say it could happen down the road in maybe another two or three relay championships. From IAAF and Jamaica Gleaner.

NASSAU (BAH): The longer relays will be staged as straight finals, on Saturday women 4x1500 m (four teams as Ethiopia did not confirm the entry) and men 4x800 m (9 teams) and on Sunday men 4x1500 m (7 teams, Bahrain is missing) and women 4x800 m (9 teams). From shorter relays women 4x200 m will be staged as straight final (8 teams). In the 4x100 m and 4x400 m after heats two finals (A and B) will be organised. 

NASSAU (BAH):  "Usain, unfortunately he can't be here, but he sends his regards to everyone and he's expecting someone to step up and fill his spot." Those were the words of Yohan Blake, the 2011 world 100m champion, at the press conference, where 13 athletes from Kenya, the USA, Great Britain, Jamaica, and The Bahamas spoke to a packed press conference about this weekend's inaugural IAAF World Relays.

NASSAU (BAH): IAAF brings some cutting edge technology to the IAAF World Relays with the use of high-end High Definition 360 video technology via IAAF.org 360 video technology allows the viewer to fully look around the image and directly control what they want to view. Just click on the image and drag your mouse around the 360 video to begin your IAAF 360 experience.  

NASSAU (BAH): General secretary of the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) Garth Gayle, is excited about Jamaica's participation at this weekend's IAAF World Relays and believes Jamaica would be an ideal host for the event in the future. "Why not?" exclaimed Gayle when asked whether or not to host the relays after 2015. "We have had successful events in the past such as the IAAF World Juniors where the IAAF president himself was alarmed at the crowds and so on. We are known for putting on good events and there should be no reason why once a good offer is made, we cannot approach it from an executive standpoint, to look at hosting this event. I think we would do a fine job at it." Informs Jamaica Gleaner. 

NASSAU (BAH): The Kenyan women's quartet led by Hellen Obiri are confident of bettering their own world record in the 4x1500m on Saturday.  "We had a very strong team who set the record last month. But the team is stronger now. Kenya can do it," Obiri said. 

NASSAU (BAH): Jamaican World champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce says she is feeling fine going into IAAF World Relays here after fears around her fitness emerged when she was withdrawn from the Shanghai World Chal-lenge meet last weekend due to a recurring leg problem. The 27-year-old also welcomed the championship and dismissed suggestions that she is without competition after a medal sweep over the past few months, winning three gold medals at the 2013 IAAF World Championships as well as gold in the 60m at the recent IAAF World Indoor Championships. "This event brings a huge amount of excitement to the fans, and I really like the idea," Fraser-Pryce said. From Jamaican media.

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