Electronic timing system back from repairs abroad

Innocent Kurira, [email protected]

BULAWAYO Athletics Board (Bab) chairperson, Watson Madanyika is hoping the White City Stadium Time Tronics Electronic Timing System will be in use when the venue plays host to the National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe (Naaz) inter-provincial championships set for June 8.

Bulawayo is playing host to the national event, which is set to attract some of the top athletes in the country.

The electronic timing system, which had been taken to Belgium for repairs is back in the country and ready for use.

The latest glitch in the timing system was the photo finish camera, which had malfunctioned.

“The good news ahead of the inter-provincials is the electronic timing system has arrived in Harare following repairs.

We are hoping it will be in use for our national event at White City Stadium next month. Team Bulawayo is being coached by Benson Mwanza and he together with the rest of his team is in the process of finalising the final squad.

We are confident, we are going to field a strong team as the host province,” said Madanyika.

All provinces are expected to take part and those that are unable to field full teams are expected to communicate before the championships so that those slots are given to other athletes, in particular, juniors.

In the past, the inter-provincials have had an international flavour, with regional track and field powerhouse South Africa, Zambia, Botswana and Mozambique participants.

The electronic timing system at White City Stadium has had limited use since its installation for the 2014 African Union Sports Council Region Five (5) Youth Games in the city.

Some antennae, which are used to detect a false start and the link between the video wall and the computer malfunctioned and the machine underwent some repairs by Belgian engineer, Eddie Vanyutven last year but there remain some areas that need to be fixed.

Vanyutven is from Time Tronics who installed the system in 2014.

The system includes a wireless false start detector, windspeed ultrasonic wind measurement, Macphoto finish timing scoreboard, LED field scoreboard, starting blocks and video wall.

Naaz wants athletes to start training using the electronic timing system so that they know their actual times compared to current distorted ones.

Once in use, the system will also help schools and tertiary institution athletes looking for scholarships abroad as they will be able to submit electronically printed times required at that level.

When the system was installed in 2014, contractors failed to meet the deadline for completion of the athletics track at White City, leaving only a 100m stretch meeting international standards.

The remaining 300m was meant to be removed and properly re-laid after the 2014 Games, but the unavailability of funds has stalled the project.

In September 2018, a fire at White City Stadium’s B-Arena destroyed some of the unlaid track left over from the shoddy work of 2014.

You Might Also Like