To finish and win, you have to start the race. Hebrews 12:1 says that there is a race set before us that we are to run. You have to move forward and keep moving forward. This is the life of Ato. A life of perpetual movement inspiring people all over the world to move forward and take their prize. Make a contribution in the quest for a better world. He has shown that in order to finish and win, you must be a participant and not just a spectator or glorified wall flower. You must report to the starter on the track. Your public responsibilities begin with the acquisition of a medal. To honour and serve! Ato is viewed as one of the leading track personalities in the history of the Caribbean. He now enters the UCLA’s Hall of Fame. Ato’s induction will help inspire T&T’s Athletes. It will heighten participation as spectator or athlete. Sports aficionados are saying that Ato’s historic induction into UCLA’S Hall of Fame will inspire the nation’s youth population, from our Olympic hopefuls to young people who participate in sports for fitness and fun.
Ato is the second Caribbean athlete, the other being Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to be inducted into UCLA’s Hall of Fame’s history. This is a great and historical day for T&T. Ato’s indefatigable work ethics, determination and achievements within and outside the walls of the nation and one of America’s most prestigious universities has put him at the top of the podium and his game as well as into the books of Caribbean and US history. Ato’s achievements should prompt young people to join clubs and seek professional coaching and assistance to enhance and perfect their skills. The T&T Government has just contracted with Cuba a multimillion dollar initiative to provided coaching in the years leading through 2012 Olympics to support sports and boost general participation at grassroots levels. The Government’s efforts must be appreciated as we go in search to find the next Ato Boldon.
Ato Jabari Boldon is a former athlete from Trinidad and Tobago and four-time Olympic medal winner. Only two other men in history, Frankie Fredericks of Namibia and Carl Lewis of the USA, have won as many Olympic individual event sprint medals. Boldon was born in Port-of-Spain Trinidad on December 30, 1973, to Mr and Mrs Guy Boldon. Ato attended Fatima College in Trinidad. He migrated to the United States at age fourteen and attended Jamaica High School in Queens, New York City, Piedmont Hills High School in California. Boldon graduated with a degree in sociology fromUCLA. At age 18, Boldon represented T&T at 100 metres and 200 metres in the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona. In 1999 The British Broadcasting Corporation hired him as a commentator and analyst at their Championships He returned as a track-side analyst to cover the 2000 US Olympic Track and Field Trials in California.
He was appointed sports ambassador for T&T in 2000 and given a diplomatic passport. On February 14 2006 he became a senator representing then opposition United National Congress. After 14 months as senator he resigned. He joined NBC as sports analyst covering the 2007 US National Championships, and later on in Osaka 2008 Summer Olympics. He was praised by the Los Angeles Times, USA Today and The New York Times press for his NBC coverage They called him “one of NBC's best analysts, a blend of athletic smarts, charisma, precise analysis and brashness.” Boldon currently covers the Diamond League Circuit Track and Field on Universal Sports TV in Europe. On July 6, 2011 UCLA BRUINS official website cited: Student-athletes and coaches to be Hall of Famers on November 4 (today). The inductees are: Gary Adams, baseball. Ato Boldon and Janeene Vickers-McKinney Track & Field. Theotis Brown and Ernie Case, football; Larry Nagler, tennis; Mel North, fencing; Alex Rousseau, water polo.
The Class of 2011 brings the total membership to 247. The new inductees will be introduced to over 20,000 fans during the halftime ceremonies of the UCLA-Arizona State football game at the Rose Bowl on November 5th. Ato holds the PAC-10 meet records in 100m (10.03) and 200m (20.00) and UCLA records in the 100m (9.90) and 200m (19.80). Boldon ranked No 1 in the world at the 200m on four occasions with 19.88 and No 2 in the 100m at 9.86 seconds for seven years. He ran a total of 28 sub-ten-seconds 100m races, including eight under 9.90 seconds. He won four Olympic and four World Championship medals. To obtain the prize racers and runners have one thought in their minds. The finish line! When do they stop running and trying? Paul the apostle tells you to run your spiritual race with all your might keep your focus. Do not settle for just being average. No matter what the inconvenience, endure it, no matter what the price, pay it or the required adjustment, and make it.
Faithfully run the race so that one day you will obtain the prize. Ato’s journey is incomplete—he is only 38years old!
By Cliff Bertrand