Bolt maquette unveiled

June 17, 2017
Minister of Sport, Olivia Babsy Grange (right), President of the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association, Dr Warren Blake (second right), scuptor, Basil Watson and Sports Development Foundation board director, Ian Forbes, (left) in discussion next to the recently unveiled maquette of Usain Bolt by Basil Watson at the Spanish Court Hotel in Kingston yesterday.

Minister of Sport Olivia 'Babsy' Grange moved to dispel mounting concerns and allegations surrounding the statue of track and field superstar Usain Bolt by unveiling a maquette of his statue yesterday.

Grange earlier this week advised the public not to be alarmed by fake news images purporting to be that of the statue of Bolt which had surfaced online.

The image, some said was not a true reflection of the decorated spiriting athlete and blasted the sports minister and sculpture Basil Watson for what was described as a poor work.

However, armed with photos and the maquette of the statue at a press conference yesterday at the Spanish Court Hotel in Kingston, Grange said she was confident of a quality finish of the product which arrives in Kingston in August.


Public concern


At the conference, the sports minister came out in strong defence of Watson - also present at the yesterday's unveiling.

"There is no way Basil Watson - who have sculptured Herb McKenley - would have sculpted the statue that has been circulating on social media causing public concern. That is just fake news," Grange said.

Watson said he was confident in the quality of the work that he has done.

He disclosed that he is in the 'semi-final' lap of completing the statue, pointing out that as he progressed, minor adjustments are being made to perfect the statue.

The statue of Bolt is only one in an array of four statues commissioned by the Government of Jamaica.

The minister said the statue of Olympian Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce would arrive in Jamaica in November of this year, but the date of the unveiling is to be determined.

The sports minister said the four carried a price tag of US $400,000 or (J$52 million).

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