Our top athletes will be chasing a slice of R200,000 when the 2011 Yellow Pages track and field series swings into action on 19 February in Potchefstroom.
The biggest change is the pot of gold awaiting athletes who break the South African record in their respective events. A total of R200 000 has been allocated by Athletics South Africa and Yellow Pages for the season.
ASA Board Member, Arnaud Malherbe, says the concept of the pot of gold: ÔÇ£came up as South Africa has always been associated with the ‘Yellow Metal’ and there is a clear synergy with Yellow Pages. Besides the synergy though, it is also important that we reward the efforts of our athletes. And to make it worth the athlete’s while, we have put aside the R200 000 to all athletes who excel and set new South African senior records during the Yellow Pages Meetings.ÔÇØ
With another long season awaiting athletes it may be a bit much to expect athletes to do too much record-breaking this early in the year but it is nevertheless a financial carrot. Tthe R200 000 will be divided among all athletes setting new South African Senior Records. If only one athlete sets a new record, the total sum will be awarded to that particular athlete.
In announcing the ‘Yellow Pages Pot of Gold’ incentive, Lionel Smith, GM Marketing of Trudon (publishers of Yellow Pages) said: ÔÇ£Yellow Pages is delighted to continue its support of the Yellow Pages Series, the Yellow Pages national championship events as well as the new additions to the calendar in the form of the Yellow Pages Interprovincial events.ÔÇØ
ÔÇ£The ‘Yellow Pages Pot of Gold’ incentives for national senior records set in track and field events included on this year’s IAAF World Championship programme, will further motivate our athletes to strive to get their names into the record-books and keep this wonderful sport entrenched as the talk of our sporting nation.ÔÇØ
Athletics South Africa is also looking at streamlining their meetings to be no longer than an hour and half each. Hence there will not be the full programme normally associated with athletics as we have seen over the past decade or so, but a return to the classic ÔÇ£one hour meetingsÔÇØ of the past.
ÔÇ£With the exception of the inter-provincials and national championships, the Yellow Pages Series will be short, sharp and fast. An action-packed, quick event is far more likely to entertain than a drawn out event, hence the move back to the shorter meetings. We will however make sure that no athlete will feel slighted in their opportunities to compete,ÔÇØ said James Evans, chairperson of the ASA Board.
Tickets for each event in the series will be R20 and they can be purchased at the gate.