November 7th 2004, marked an important date for Rockets Athletic Club. This is the day that Martial Charlery officially announced the formation of the Rockets Athletic Club.
Over the years, Rockets Athletic Club has grown from strength to strength. It is the only athletics club on the Island that takes athletes of all ages to competition outside of Saint Lucia, regardless of how much they have achieved or how much experience they have had. The aim is to expose the athletes at the earliest possible stage to competition outside of the island and to learn and experience new things.
Rockets, as it is affectionately known, includes their athletes' parents and families in all the club's activities. Parents are invited to participate in fundraising activities, family day activities and also to attend workshops and seminars with the aim of educating them. A counselor is attached to the club to help deal with any issues that may be affecting the athletes, whether personally, academically or psychologically.
The athletes of the Rockets Athletic Club are expected to maintain a 70% average in their academics. They are also expected to participate in self development workshops and seminars organized by the club, all track and field competitions held locally, and to be apart of the planning and development of all the activities of the club. This is done to facilitate the sense of ownership and team building within all club members. The club has implemented a Junior Management team which includes all the athletes from ages 17-22 years, they are responsible for planning an organizing activities for the athletes.
The club's success over the years includes participation in competitions such as the Young Olympian Championships in Barbados 2005, Falcon Games in Trinidad and Tobago in 2006, Western Springfield Juvenile Championships in 2007, AAU Club Championships in Orlando Florida 2008, 2010, 2012 and Carifta Trials in Barbados in the year 2011.
At all of the competitions mentioned above, Rockets Athletic Club had great success from both a team and individual perspective. The athletes continue to show their prowess at the National and international level. From 2009 to 2014 they have continued to impress their fans, sponsors and supporters; with one of our athletes being recognized by ESPN as a rising star. Four of our athletes hold records at the juvenile championships on the island, and four have represented Saint Lucia on a Regional and International Level. At the School and District level, the athletes continue to dominate in their events holding Victor and Victrix Ludorum titles.
The athletes who are now at the regional and international level all began with the club at the tender age of 7 and 9 years old. The three oldest members are now 20 and 21 years of age, two of whom are now pursuing degrees in Medicine and Public Health, while the other athlete is hoping to begin his studies in Engineering.
"We are proud to say that the Rockets Athletic Club continues to impress on our members that they are the next generation who will take Saint Lucia to the highest level in track and field, and their input in the development of track and field is paramount," a statement from the Club said.
"We took a quantum leap to host a development clinic with three international coaches on the island in 2013. Athletes, Physical Education Teachers and a few Coaches all participated in this clinic. The Coaches were Dr. Peter Thompson IAAF consultant, Dr. Matt Lydum USATF coach and author and Dr. Dave Shrock USATF Lecturer.
"Our club was given further international exposure when Magdalene Cooman wrote a short story on our founders on her blog. Through her blog the British Broadcasting Cooperation made contact with the team and did a short documentary on the club which was aired in April of 2014, as part of their coverage of the Commonwealth Games Baton Relay to seventy one nations.
"As we prepare to mark our 10 years anniversary, we are planning for the next five years. Our greatest desire is to build a home for Rockets Athletic Club, where our athletes can come to after school to do home work, conduct workshops, clinics and seminars, to socialize, and most importantly to train.
"At present we train at the Camille Henry Memorial School, the beach and the National Stadium.
The journey has not been easy, our sponsors, Saint Lucia Electricity Services, Consolidated Foods, Ministry of Youth Development and Sports and the Saint Lucia National Lotteries have always supported our activities and projects and to them we are very grateful," the release concluded.