Former national Olympian and sprinter, Mary Estelle Mahuk, said taking a step off from the tracks is not in the cards for her any time soon.

The Vanuatu golden lady who graced the international arena in the Olympics and Commonwealth outdoor disciplines back in the 90s and early 21 century, participating in the 200M,400M,800M, and 400M hurdles, said the sport is her passion and she wish for the best for all Vanuatu athletes.

Traveling across the world to the snowy caps of Europe to the summer mountains of USA and back to the South Pacific Ocean, Marie Estelle said sports can do more than be a fitness vehicle.

“Sports can drive a young damaged mindset to a clearer and happier individual,” she said of the younger generation’s love for unwanted substances like drugs and alcohol that leads them to jail.

As an official for the young athletics team in the Solomon Islands alongside Japanese Volunteer and Vanuatu Coach Ryosuke Itomi, Mary Estelle is positive for a fantastic turnout.

“Despite Vanuatu’s lateness in preparations, I have high hopes in this young team to return to the capital of Port Vila with medals and pride for our nation,” she said.

She mentioned further that sprinting is a form of sport that many fear or find difficult to participate in. However, there are other events in athletics that you could make yourself comfortable around.

“Athletics is not only about running, there are other track events like Javelin, shotput, discus, the jump events, throws, and even relays where not only young people but interested people can affiliate for the betterment of the country,” she said.

She said though she has left the field physically, she still remains as a coach and administrator for the discipline, as it is her passion, and with all the experiences she gained abroad, she wishes to pass on the knowledge to the next generation to put into good use.

As one of the oldest members of the Vanuatu contingent in the Pacific Games 17 show in the Solomon Islands, Marie Estelle hoped her more than 20 years’ experience have a good impact on the athletic community in Honiara as well as back home.

Meanwhile, 40-year-old Weightlifter and gold medalist for Solomon Islands Jenly Tegu Wini who has a tendency for grabbing first place, even in the current Pacific Games has declared that this is her show in the gymnasium.

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SOURCE: VANUATU DAILY POST