Belizean track athlete Kaina Martinez is headed to Jamaica for training. Martinez is the recipient of scholarship from the Belize Olympic Association through the Belize Amateur Athletic Association. Martinez says she is ready to take her personal training to the next level.

Kaina Martinez – Athlete

“I’ll be training with a coach in Jamaica and I do know that is going to be totally different from what I have been doing here. I will now be training with a coach and it’s not like I am going be the person pushing myself solely there is going to be a coach there pushing me to the utmost best that I can perform at so I am looking forward to it. I am excited but a little bit nerve racking because it is going to be something totally different from what I have ever done. I am always ready for challenges in life and when talking about the athletes in Jamaica, I’m preparing myself mentally to do that because at the end of the day I am doing this for myself, the country and other young people who may have the same dream that I have. To focus more on myself a little bit more is going to make it easier on me. If I start comparing myself with other people in Jamaica then I am going to break down myself. It is all about going out there, train and just do the best that I could do to reach to the Olympics.

Patrick Jones - Reporter How did you get this opportunity to go to Jamaica for training?

Kaina Martinez – Athlete

“From Belize Olympic Committee in collaboration with the Belize Amateur Athletic Association; they are the ones who came together and decide that I deserve a chance to go to Jamaica and qualify myself to go to the Olympics which I am looking forward to do because it is something that I always wanted to do.”

President of the Belize Amateur Athletic Association Ian Gray says Martinez is one of two Belizean athletes whom were considered for the scholarship.

Ian Gray – President, BAAA

“Mr. Neville McCook who is the President of this region saw Kaina race in Guatemala last year and decided to offer the scholarship so he initiated the program."

Patrick Jones - Reporter

“Kaina is going to Jamaica to do training when she comes back to Belize what support is there from your organization.

Ian Gray – President, BAAA

“She will be coming back in about seven months hopefully we get her over to another program. Her success at this program will determine pretty much where she goes from here. The other available programs are short term basis for the Olympics"

Patrick Jones - Reporter

“Is this opportunity open to other Belizean athletes?

Ian Gray – President, BAAA

“It was open to one other athlete but he is not Belizean based Jonathon Williams however it is a very select group of athletes that are chosen from this region there are only two athletes, a gentleman Palacios from Honduras and Kaina; they are the only Central American at this program.

Patrick Jones - Reporter

Can other Belizeans athletes be selected?

Ian Gray – President, BAAA

“Yes they can, based on their performance. It has to be of a high level and Mr. McCook would have to feel that they have the potential to excel and frankly he looks pretty much at the younger athletes."

Patrick Jones - Reporter In terms of your organization how do you see the way forward in terms of recruiting other athletes to get an opportunity like Kaina is getting.

Ian Gray – President, BAAA

“Athletes come out, it is a word of mouth thing, they see the papers, they see the TV interviews, they see their friends, they see their neighbours and they want to do the same so they just come out. It is almost a limited effort on our part they just see it and they come out. Essentially most of our athletes are school students so most of them have played on their school teams or represented their school in some way.”

Martinez is scheduled to leave Belize on Tuesday of next week and will be out for six months. She believes that this opportunity brings her one step to her goal of performing in the Olympics.

Kaina Martinez – Athlete

“Yeah, I do believe because like I said it is going to be more training, I am going to be pushed more. It’s not like I am going to training myself and when I got tired I am like this is it for the day; I am going to have a coach there who is going to be kicking my butt to keep on going to my utmost ability.”

Patrick Jones - Reporter

And when you come back to Belize?

Kaina Martinez – Athlete

“When I come back to Belize I am not sure what I will be doing but hopefully work make some money and go back to school so I could continue doing track. If I keep on working it is going to be tougher on me to make my dreams come true so I am going to work in the meantime to get some money to go back to school.”

Martinez has been involved in athletics for the last eleven years. She is also active in other sport disciplines including softball and football. Any athlete who is interested in training and scholarship opportunities can contact the Belize Amateur Athletic Association at its office at the MCC Grounds in Belize City.

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