1,700 in Chinatown 7K Road Race

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By Sue- Ann Wayow

TRINIDAD and Tobago’s top long-distance runners kept their reputation in tact when they crossed the finish line at the Fui Toong On Association (FTOA) Chinatown 7K road race last week Sunday.

Wearing number #1, Nicholas Romany was the first to cross the line at Charlotte Street, Port of Spain.

Romany won with  a time of 21:58 mins.

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He will now be representing Trinidad and Tobago in the Run Barbados Marathon in December, an all expenses paid trip sponsored by the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc.

This prize, in addition to his trophy and the first-place cash prize of $3,000.

Romany was ahead of almost 1,700 runners who registered for the first ever FTOA Chinatown 7K race in the heart of the capital city.


Passing all other females was Samantha Shukla who finished in 29:16 mins. Coming in second and third in the overall men’s category were Kenya’s Alex Ekesa and Tafari Waldron respectively.

Placing second and third in the women’s overall category were Linda McDowall from St. Vincent and the Grenadines and 10-year-old Chennai Moore from Valencia respectively.


The race began and ended in the same spot just outside Fui Toong On Association on Charlotte Street near the signature Chinatown arch and included a lap around the Queen’s Park Savannah.

Organised by FTOA, the oldest Chinese association in Trinidad and Tobago, in collaboration with BafaSports and support from the Chinese Embassy, the monies raised from the race went to the Homeless Assistance Office in Port of Spain to the value of $100,000.

Speaking to AZP News, President of FTOA Joe Chan said the race that was fused with a taste of Chinese culture was a success and may become an annual event.


FTOA Secretary Raymond Chin Asang was one of the main organisers.

Chan said, “Generally it was a pretty good success. We thank God for the nice weather and we thank all those who participated.”

He said through the hosting of the race, the association was attempting to change a perception that all Chinese people do was make money through their businesses.

Chan said, “Our Chinese community, we decided to do something for our local community and whatever we can do, they can talk to us and then we can see what we can help with. At the same time, we always hear the negativity about Chinese people, how they always making money and so on  and we are very conscious about it.”


Chan said a lot of charitable works take place and many times without public knowledge but with events like the race, he is hoping that public’s belief may change.

Having lived in Trinidad for almost 45 years, Chan says he and the Chinese community have always been seeking Trinidad and Tobago’s interest.

“This is my life and my second home,” he said.

Nicholas Romany crosses the finish line followed closely by Kenyan Alex Ekesa. Photo: Clynton Mann


Samantha Shukla, first woman to cross the finish line at the Chinatown 7K road race in Port of Spain on Sunday. Photo: Clynton Mann

Chan also said the association has learnt from their teething problems and next time, there will be better organisation.

He said while the association was seeking to have 2000 participants he believed many were caught up with the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

Gerard Asyn, of La Horquetta. AZP News/Sue-Ann Wayow

Former mayor of Port of Spain Joel Martinez was one of the participants.

He told AZP News that the association worked alongside the Mayor’s office to bring the race to completion. He lauded the work of FTOA and the Chinese community for their contribution to the development of Port of Spain.

Current mayor Chinua Alleyne was present to blast off the starting horn. He was assisted by Yang Han, Charge d’Affaires at the Chinese Embassy.

President of FTOA Joe Chan

Chairman for Sports, Youth, Culture and Community Development for the Port of Spain City Corporation Jenniel Frederick made presentations to the winners at the end of the race.

Participants included the elderly, children and those differently abled. 

The sponsors included: FCMC Membership Shopping, China Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Commerce, Blue Waters, Lawrence Marketing Co, Janelle Wang, Subway, The China Society, Toyshan Association, Gatorade, Caribislesports, De One Chinese Restaurant and Enping China Association.

Interview with Gerard Asyn, of La Horquetta. AZP News/Sue-Ann

Lining up before the race. AZP News/Sue-Ann Wayow

All smiles




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