By Neto Baptiste
Despite what she has labelled as a lack of adequate communication between the Antigua and Barbuda Athletics Association (ABAA) and herself over the past year, US-based national high-jumper Priscilla Loomis is still willing to play a role in the development of young athletes here in Antigua.
Loomis, who recently announced she will retire from international competition after falling short of the qualifying standard for the ongoing Tokyo Olympics, said she is willing and ready to host camps for young aspiring athletes interested in field events.
“Of course. It is something I wanted to do with Cejhae last year before COVID even happened. It was something that him and I were talking about and we thought it would be a great idea because I wanted to be back on the island as much as possible to help, that’s it,” she said.
“You have to leave something better than you found it so, we don’t have a lot of field eventers so if I could help in anyway shape or form with that then I would absolutely do it, two million percent,” she added.
The athlete, who claimed silver at the 2015 Pan American Games held in Toronto, Canada and then again in 2019 in Lima, Peru said the goal must be to improve the standard here in Antigua.
“You’ve got to help the youths, you’ve got to help the kinds know that there are opportunities out there and give everything you can. It’s the only way to make the world a better place, it’s to give back and help. I would have loved to have been back on the island more, training on the island, doing the track camps like I had wanted to do but I think it was just COVID though. I think the global pandemic really put a [hold] on everything,” she said.
Loomis’ qualifying efforts for the Tokyo Olympics were severely hampered after she tested positive for COVID 19 on January 17 this year.