By Neto Baptiste
Although focused on completing her studies in aviation, national track athlete Bliss Soleyn is adamant that she has not given up on the sport and still wants to represent her country.
Speaking on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show Soleyn, who is currently enrolled in flight school in Florida, said she communicates with the national athletics association through her parents on regular intervals and believes there could come a time when she wears national colours once more.
“I do still workout, I am still a track athlete and I know there have been a lot of questions about that but I don’t think people are really understanding where everything in regards to track is for me as a no-collegiate athlete right now and I think that’s where the grey space is coming in,” she said.
“It is not one of those situations where I am 100 percent focused on my career and have completely forgotten about track because at the end of the day, track has pretty much put me where I am right now in terms of having a degree and so on but I do have more of my focus on my career currently,” she added.
The 22-year-old last competed in 2019 when she featured at the NCAA Division 1 East Regional championships, clocking 11.87 seconds in the 100 meters.
Soleyn, who last represented Antigua and Barbuda in 2017 when she competed at the Carifta Games, said it would be too soon for her to completely rule out a career in track.
“We are kind of at a standstill in regards to COVID so I can’t just say or make a decision in this kind of climate because I don’t know what is going to happen six, eight or nine months down the line. There could be a drastic turnaround and things start picking up and I am only 22 and the prime age for an athlete is between 22 to around 26 so if I would be honest I would say that I feel like I am about to hit my prime so I would definitely not want to walk away from the sport anytime soon,” the athlete said.
The budding pilot also sought to put the country’s leader and prime minister, Gaston Browne, on alert.
“I would just like to put this message out there while I am on your platform and especially to the Hon. Prime Minister, Gaston Browne, that I am more than just an athlete. I recently graduated from Ohio State, I have a degree in aviation management and I am definitely looking at getting practical experience in the field. I know there is so much going on in terms of our regional carrier, LIAT, but I am definitely ready and I expect to have some hands on experience and I feel like my home field is the best place to gain that knowledge,” she said.
Soleyn is slated to complete her studies in October next year.