Athletes wishing to qualify for this year’s Carifta Triathlon Championships could do so through the Rohrman Triathlon Championships slated for March.
This was revealed by Rory Butler, one of the event’s chief organisers, who said the decision was made during a meeting with members of the Antigua and Barbuda Triathlon Association. “I had a meeting with the President of the Antigua and Barbuda Triathlon Association (ABTA), Dr. Philmore Benjamin, and he confirmed that they will use it as not only the national championships and qualifiers for the PanAm Games.
But it’s three years in now that Carifta Triathlon Championships have started, and it’s going to be in Jamaica at the beginning of August this year, so all of the youth age groups that are of Carifta age, this will act as a qualifier for Carifta,” he said. The event, slated for the second week in March, will provide participants an opportunity to compete in Barbuda.
“We have on Saturday 9th March, 10 different triathlons at Ffryes Beach and we start from six years old and under [going] right up to the Olympic distance. But the big new edition that we are having this year is that we have teamed up with the Jumby Bay Fund, and we have a day two now when we go to Barbuda for the Jumby Bay Fund Rohrman Barbuda,” Butler said.
“What we’ve done is split the day, so we will have the 10 triathlons on the Saturday in Antigua, and then on the Sunday in Barbuda. We have three different walks and two short swims, as well as a bike race which is for Barbudans, because we are not able to bring over the bikes from Antigua to Barbuda,” he added.
Butler, a national tri-athlete and former national cyclist, is hoping the move could forge closer relations between the youth inAntigua and Barbuda. “We’re trying to bring Antiguans and Barbudans closer together, especially students, young people – because a lot of young people don’t have the opportunity to go to Barbuda – and let people see how things are there, especially after the hurricane, because Barbuda is a bit different over there now,” he said.
“We will also try to assist Barbuda, because all the proceeds from the event will go to Barbudans, and everybody who is catering something for the event in Barbuda is going to be a Barbudan. We’re not going over there and giving aid, but we are giving them a chance to earn some money by providing food and other services over there as well,” he added.
Butler also revealed that through sponsorship and support from the Jumby Bay Fund, athletes competing in the Barbuda leg of the event will pay only $30 per student and $50 per adult on either Lady Caroline Ferry or the Barbuda Express per round trip on the day. This also includes race packages and lunch. Registration can be done via the Rohrman triathlon Facebook page or at H&G Paints on Dickenson Bay Street.