After a near four-hour long meeting of the Racing Committee of the T&T Cycling Federation at the National Cycling Centre (NCC) in Couva on Monday to address claims of victimisation by cycling's Technical Director and coach Erin Hartwell, the committee is set to deliver a report to the executive of the cycling federation for deliberation by the end of the week.
Only after the executives are satisfied with the report it will be sent to the media. Chairman Joseph Roberts said yesterday he and his members - Rowena Williams, Robert Farrier, David Francis, Ashton Williams, Robert Farrell and Carl Williams have dealt with the issues satisfactorily and have agreed to move forward, using the federation's policy as their guide.
However, he admitted his committee will conduct a thorough review of the policy to cope with the changing environment, noting that any concern that may have arisen, would have stemmed from a failure to adhere to the TTCF's policy.
Apart from the issues of victimisation by cyclist Quincy Alexander and calls by Hartwell for his name to be cleared, the meeting also dealt with adopting a level of confidentiality among members.
Alexander, for a second time, complained of victimisation by Hartwell, as he believed his failure to command a place on the T&T Sprint team was due to Hartwell's reluctance to show the times he (Alexander) produced during practice sessions and other national events. His first complaint of victimisation to the committee, Roberts said, was in November last year while the coach was out of the country at the Berlin World Cup in Germany.
Roberts said his committee did not get the opportunity to deal with Alexander's complaint at the time, but has been dealing with it since. Hartwell in a comprehensive report delivered to the racing committee at the weekend revealed that Alexander was either late or absent which made it difficult for him to be properly evaluated.
Hartwell pointed out that, "Note that Quincy Alexander has been late or absent for a number of training sessions throughout the past year—especially when there had been an evaluation component, e.g., team sprint workouts. His absence makes it harder to evaluate him against his teammates and for me to make a recommendation for selection—especially considering that he is the slowest rider at the majority of workouts."
To convey this, Hartwell produced a spreadsheet showing this trend. Hartwell also sought to explain that not all timed efforts can be used for evaluation as other variables may influence the time of the athlete. "For example, motor-pace and motor-chase efforts cannot be used for evaluation as the motorbike and driver, its interaction with the rider, and the athletes' confidence behind the motor will all impact the overall time."
He noted, "Additionally, it’s not possible to accurately time some group efforts, e.g., handicapped 500s, as the group of athletes interacting together will influence the times of each individual rider. Therefore, the primary timed drivers of assessment for making recommendations for sprint events are team-sprint training efforts (technical, tactical, and physiological) and flying 100m/200m workouts (technical and physiological). These workouts are single variable and allow for greater accuracy in assessing the timed performance with limited influence by outside factors. The time is the time."
After the meeting, Hartwell said he felt confident that the report will vindicate him, and Alexander will refute the claims he made.