Fire on Ice! … Mayhew looks forward to historic bobsled competition

first_imgMeet 17-year-old Daniel Mayhew.He cannot drive a car, but he is quite competent, and on evidence, very comfortable guiding a bobsleigh downhill at 110km/h.The Charlemont High school student will head off to a training camp next week before taking his place as Jamaica’s first representative at the Winter Youth Olympic Games where he will feature in the Monobob competition.Remember that movie Cool Runnings?Well this is yet another version of Jamaicans defying logic and excelling on ice.Mayhew’s case becomes even more outstanding when the fact that he only stepped in a bobsleigh for the first time a mere 11 months ago at a Swiss training camp is taken into consideration.”I can’t recall exactly what I was feeling, but I know I was very nervous at first. They started me at the middle of the track, so that I didn’t get as much speed as I would if I started at the top,” Mayhew recollected during a recent chat with The Gleaner.HEARD HORROR STORIESHe heard many horror stories before that maiden voyage, but his first few runs were incident free, and as his confidence grew, so did his popularity among the other young athletes at the camp.The Jamaican, who lives in the St Catherine community Orange Field, which was also home to former 100m world record holder Asafa Powell, went on to win two ‘B’ finals and book his place among the qualifiers for the February 12 – 21 Winter Youth Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway.”I am a little bit surprised. I was the underdog and coming out on top in the B finals shows that I am going somewhere and I can see that I am improving my driving skills and my overall performance,” Mayhew added.”Going to the Olympic Games is a really extraordinary feeling. When I finished my qualifying run and knew that I qualified, it was an overwhelming feeling. I am hoping to get a medal possibly even the gold. The potential is there for me to do it, all I have to do is listen to my coach and I know I can come out on top,” he said.It was that well-rounded coach Harry Nelson, his eighth grade physical education teacher, who took the academic enthusiast out of a class one day and greeted him with the words: “I am have mission for you. You are going to compete in the bobsled.”Hard words to process for a teenager, who had little interest in actually competing in sports. But Nelson, who was impressed with the form shown during eight grade PE, was convinced he had the potential.”At first I was not attracted to the sport, it all happened really suddenly … I really wasn’t that interested at first; who wants to do that (bobsled)?” he laughed. “It’s a very different experience, but it has been extraordinary.”Mayhew, who has passed eight subjects all with ones and twos has hopes to become a commercial pilot in the future but is, however, happy that he decided to take the leap in the bobsleigh and is looking to do his best in Norway.But has he seen the movie Cool Runnings?”I saw that movie before. It was really just like any other movie to me. It really wasn’t that interesting to me at first, but before I left I watched it again because I had a feeling people were going to ask me about it,” he laughed.Maybe his story will play a part in a sequel.last_img read more

Multimillion-dollar hinterland dormitory to be commissioned soon

first_imgThe $186 million Hinterland Student Dormitory located at Liliendaal, Greater Georgetown, is set for commissioning in early March.The Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs Ministry is currently finalising preparations for this monumental occasion. The spanking new facility which is aback the current Hinterland Student Dormitory is the first of its kind for hinterland students who are pursuing tertiary education.The spanking new dormitoryThese include students currently attending the University of Guyana (UG); the Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE); the Government Technical Institute (GTI); the Guyana School of Agriculture; Carnegie School of Home Economics; the ER Burrowes School of Art and the Guyana Industrial Training Centre.The 16-apartment facility boasts a male and a female dormitory, with each apartment housing eight students at any given time and a kitchenette, toilet and bath area and also a study area, while the dormitory itself has a cooking area, a library and a play area as well as accommodation for two dormitory supervisors.Administrator Valerie DavidCurrently, several students attending tertiary institutions are housed at the Secondary Student Dormitory, Liliendaal and at the Indigenous Residence in Princes Street.Last year, Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs Minister Sydney Allicock said the Ministry was eagerly awaiting the completion of the facility, since students would be able to advance their education in a more conducive environment.Meanwhile, 55-year-old Retired Head Mistress Valerie David from Mabaruma, Region One (Barima-Waini) is the Facility’s Administrator. David is a retired Head Teacher who has given 38 years to the teaching profession.One of the rooms in the dormitoryOver the past 10 years, an estimated 600 students have benefited from hinterland scholarships to attend a number of tertiary institutions in Georgetown.The contractor executing the project is BK International, and it is being supervised by Kalitech Inc, a consultancy firm.last_img read more