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Thursday 20th October 2011
Canadian world record holder Rick Ball stands with Antigua and Barbuda’s Paralympic hope Jamol Pilgrim

Antiguan single leg amputee athlete Jamol Pilgrim along with his Canadian counterpart, world record holder Rick Ball, will headline this year's Sandals Foundation's half marathon race.

The run takes places ahead of Paralympic appearances by both Pilgrim and Ball at next year’s London Paralympics.
The Sandals  Foundation which is putting on the event has said that the two single leg amputees will motivate young people island-wide to never give up on their dreams, a message that has resuscitated Pilgrim, who is poised to become Antigua and Barbuda’s first Para Olympian.



Pilgrim, who lost one of his legs due to an unfortunate car accident, was an upcoming local sprinter who felt his career had ended. But according to Anne Harewood of the Sandals Foundation, that was until he met world record holder Rick Ball.

“I think for all of us, Rick Ball has truly been an inspiration and when he recounts his story, you begin to understand the power of perseverance. He had a significant impact on the hundreds of students he interacted with and most definitely Jamol. In less than a year, he has transformed himself from a world class long distance runner to a world class sprinter,” adds Harewood.

Harewood believes like it did last year, the Sandals Foundation Trans- Antigua Half Marathon will create tremendous awareness for distance running in Antigua and also encourage a greater acceptance of people with special disabilities on the island.
Moreover, Air Canada Vacations is coming on stream as a diamond sponsor this year for the second time in a row and its President Zeina Gedeon is ecstatic about the opportunity for her company to get involved.  

“Air Canada Vacations and Sandals have cultivated a true partnership that allows us to connect with the Caribbean community in a very special way. We are very proud to support the Sandals Foundation as we sincerely believe in its mandate to provide better education, preserve the environment and develop the Caribbean community,” continued Gedeon.

The Sandals Foundation Trans-Antigua Half Marathon is slated to take place on Sunday, December 4 at 6am and its proceeds will go towards constructing a multi-purpose court for the Antigua Girls High School.  
The route will start at Sandals Grande Antigua Resort & Spa and finish at Grand Pineapple Beach Resort.  Participants will also have the option of doing the 5km walk or run or the 10km walk or run. 

Xtreme Health and Fitness is the local diamond sponsor and all registration will take place there.  The registration fee is $25 for all participants and official registration begins on October 17.  For more information, please call 562-7482.

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