‘Chiney Dolly’ aims to whip male rivals

first_imgBeing a woman in a male-dominated sport can be hard at times. But for Natasha ‘Chiney Dolly’ Chang, nothing brings as much fun and excitement like beating the life out of her male counterparts on the track at Dover Raceway in St Ann.”This race meet, I am definitely going to give them hell. I have a nice surprise for them,” the pencil-framed racing driver told The Gleaner during yesterday’s launch of the Heroes of Speed race meet, which is scheduled to take place on Heroes Day, Monday, October 19. The launch took place at the ATL Volkswagen Showroom on Oxford Road, New Kingston.Chang, who is perhaps the first woman in the region to drive a rear-wheel Honda 2.2-litre vehicle in a circuit race event, promises to be her usual fiery self.”My last event was in Trinidad, where I finished second and third, respectively, in two events, competing under wet conditions. The last race meet in Jamaica, I was sick and could not compete. I have recovered since and have been dying to race at Dover,” said Chang, who is hoping to take down big guns David Summerbell Jr and Doug Gore in the Thundersport II Class. She wants to finish the year on a high note.The Jamaica Race Drivers’ Club (JRDC) has dubbed the meet Back in the Good Old Days, as it celebrates 25 years of circuit racing in Jamaica. Based on the line-up, the meet promises to be full of non-stop action.Children freeMonique Gibbs, JRDC’s club secretary said it will be a family setting and children under 12 will be admitted free.Besides Chang, mounting tension between arch-rivals Gore and Summerbell seems to be intensifying. Red represents the latter’s team and blue is the colour of the former.”Over the last couple of weeks, I have been campaigning, requesting of fans not to wear any form of red to Dover on Monday. I feel we are going to have a really good meet, the car is very capable, we saw the big improvement at Jam West, and as long as the conditions are good, I think we can erase the track record,” said a jovial Gore, who drives an Audi and was decked out in a bright blue shirt at yesterday’s launch.He added: “I also understand that Summerbell has done some fantastic stuff to his car, so we are in for an intense battle.”Meantime, Summerbell is not taking anything for granted. At Jam West in August, Gore drew first blood by dominating that meet. Now, Summerbell will be looking to turn the tables at Dover, which is said to be more friendly and accommodating to his Stewart’s Auto/Total Lubricant-sponsored Mitsubishi Evolution 8.”Last weekend, we went down and tested the car. There are still some little things to tighten up, but the car is in good shape I feel very comfortable with where we are now. We are coming to give of our best and the aim is to win all three races in the Thundersport II Class,” said Summerbell.glenroy.sinclair@gleanerjm.comlast_img read more

Roses Are Red, Darwinists Are Blue

first_imgRoses have a special pigment molecule, a particular form of anthocyanin, responsible for all the rich red-to-blue shades in the petals that delight gardeners and attract pollinating insects.  This molecule is different from the pigments in every other flowering plant; it is glycosylated at two positions instead of one.2  A single enzyme does the job at both points.  Without the glycosylation reaction at both ends, the molecule is unstable and cannot be soluble in water in the vacuoles of the cells in which it operates.    A team of Japanese scientists investigated how this double-glycosylation reaction system might have evolved.  They could find no intermediate.  Reporting in Nature,1 they said that while other flowers use derivatives from a singly-glycosylated form, “this is evolutionarily precluded in roses by their different glycosylation pattern, which may be unique to members of the Rosaceae” (emphasis added in all quotes).  They also stated with puzzlement,It is a mystery why this particular glycosyltransferase evolved independently in roses.  The novelty of the RhGT1 enzyme therefore lies not only in its ability to catalyse glycosylation at two different sites on the anthocyanidin molecule but also in its apparent absence from other species.They prepared a phylogenetic tree based on this type of pigment-preparing enzyme family, but it ended up with the rose family on a branch all by itself.1Ogata et al., “Plant biochemistry: Anthocyanin biosynthesis in roses,” Nature, 435, 757-758 (9 June 2005) | doi: 10.1038/nature435757a.2Glycosylation replaces an OH (hydroxyl) group with a glucoside.  This is performed by an enzyme called a glycosyltransferase, in the case of roses, RhGT1.Here is a small gap, but a gap nonetheless; no evidence for the evolution of this complex molecule and the enzyme that knows how to operate it – just an unconfirmed prediction from evolutionary theory.  Surprised?  Question: was evolutionary theory of any value in this investigation?(Visited 6 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Bright future for FNB Stadium

first_imgFNB Stadium will host more Soweto derbies. FNB’s grass being trimmed for a big game. Jacques Grobbelaar is a director of FNB’smanagement company. The calabash-designed venue was ahub of activity during the World Cup.(Images: Bongani Nkosi)MEDIA CONTACTS• Orelia GrobbelaarCorporate AffairsStadium Management South Africa+27 11 247 5300Bongani NkosiThe FNB Stadium in Johannesburg, a hub of activity during the 2010 Fifa World Cup, is the most profitable facility that was built or renovated in South African for tournament matches – and its success as a venue looks set to continue.The stadium, also referred to as Soccer City, is now back to hosting big sport games like the Soweto Derby between Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates, other premier league football matches, as well as international football and rugby matches.World-famous entertainers are also billed to perform at the 94 000-capacity venue in the coming months, said Jacques Grobbelaar, director of Stadium Management South Africa which manages the FNB facility, Soweto’s Orlando and Dobsonville stadiums and Rand Stadium in southern Johannesburg.“Big stars are coming to the stadium,” said Grobbelaar at a media briefing at the stadium on 22 September.It’s been confirmed that US pop sensation Neil Diamond will perform there later this year.Although there are concerns that the 10 World Cup stadiums won’t be used to their full potential, this is not the case with the multi-purpose FNB facility, said the management group which has been given full responsibility to run the venue owned by the City of Johannesburg.Tickets snapped up for FNB matchesThe government renovated the FNB Stadium at a cost of R3.3-billion (US$460.6-million) ahead of the global football spectacle.Since hosting the momentous World Cup matches, including the opening and final, FNB went on to stage four high-attendance football and rugby matches, two of which were sold-out events.The sold-out Telkom Charity Cup, which provided all-day football activities in August, was held there, followed later in the month by a historic Tri-Nations match between South Africa’s national rugby side the Springboks and the All Blacks of New Zealand. Some 92 000 tickets were snapped up for this face-off.Bafana Bafana beat Ghana at the stadium in a well-attended match on 10 August.It was also a playground for the first round of the MTN Top 8 semifinal between Soweto giants Chiefs and Pirates, which attracted more than 50 000 spectators. The second round will also be at the stadium on 25 September.“Pirates and Chiefs will play their big matches here,” Grobbelaar said.Stadium Management South Africa has secured further agreements with Chiefs and Pirates, the biggest premier league clubs in Johannesburg, to use Rand Stadium and Orlando Stadium for their home matches.Chiefs played its home matches outside Johannesburg during the previous season, although it’s traditionally a Soweto-based team. Another Soweto premier league outfit, Moroka Swallows, plays its home matches at Dobsonville Stadium.It’s taken more than luck to strike these agreements with such big teams, Grobbelaar said. It took the company 14 months to get Chiefs to agree to play at Rand Stadium, and negotiations with Pirates dragged on for nine months.It took 18 months to bring the Tri-Nations match to FNB, according to Grobbelaar. “We were quite chuffed with finalising those agreements,” he said.“It’s not the fact that we’re lucky, all stadiums are competing [for these games].”Negotiations are under way with the Golden Lions rugby team to be moved to FNB.Stadium financially sustainableThe stadium requires about R2.5-million ($35 000) for maintenance each month – but this is no problem for management because “we’ve put proper content by attracting Chiefs and Pirates”, said Grobbelaar.Management is “doing well” in “meeting the financial demands”.“We don’t have any concerns about sustainability. We know that the stadium will be utilised,” said Grobbelaar.The FNB Stadium receives no funding from the City of Johannesburg for maintenance. “We accepted full financial responsibility of the stadium.”Grobbelaar said 40% of the management group’s profit is ploughed into community development projects around Johannesburg.last_img read more

UN award for Joburg Housing Company

first_img29 September 2010The Johannesburg Social Housing Company is to receive the world’s most prestigious human settlements accolade, the United Nations’ 2010 Scroll of Honour award, for its holistic approach to providing shelter, which has benefited almost 30 000 people around the city.The UN’s Scroll of Honour awards recognise initiatives that have made outstanding contributions in various fields such as shelter provision, highlighting the plight of homelessness, and leadership in post-conflict reconstruction.The 2010 awards will be presented in Shanghai, China on Monday, 4 October.The Johannesburg Social Housing Company (Joshco) was established by the City of Johannesburg in 2004 to provide affordable rental housing to the lower-income market in order to help eradicate South Africa’s housing backlog.It has been active in several project sites, including in Orlando, Soweto and Industria West, where former hostels have been converted into 213 family apartments. At present, it manages more than 5 000 affordable rental accommodation units, and has reduced default on payments from 87 percent to only 6 percent since it started operating in 2006.The company’s annual budget is about R175-million.Joshco’s chief executive officer, Rory Gallocher, said Johannesburg faced a lot of pressure in delivering good quality and affordable housing.“It makes a big difference to know that we are doing something right because it is often possible to get buried in the detail and forget that we have many counterparts all over the world who are wrestling with similar problems,” Gallocher said. “But it is important for us to count our victories when they come along so that we realise that we are making progress.”Gallocher said the agency’s application to be considered for the award was a test to see if the past six years of work had made an impact. “We thought it would be interesting to compare our efforts with other initiatives around the world.”The group was planning to push for more opportunities to develop more affordable stock, he added.“Our focus right now is on reducing the costs and increasing the revenues. This is important so that we can stretch the budgets as far as possible so that the improved service delivery can be felt by more families in Johannesburg.”Source: City of Johannesburglast_img read more

ODA proposes changes to Ohio’s noxious weeds list

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Wild carrot, Oxeye daisy, and wild mustard will no longer be prohibited noxious weeds in Ohio if the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s (ODA) revisions to the noxious weeds list become effective. ODA is proposing to remove the three plants after its five-year review of plant species considered “noxious” for purposes of Ohio law. The agency is also proposing adding these 12 species to the noxious weeds list:• Yellow Groove Bamboo (Phyllostachys aureasculata), when the plant has spread from its original premise of planting and is not being maintained• Field bindweed (Convolvulus arvensis)• Heart-podded hoary cress (Lepidium draba sub. draba). Hairy whitetop or ballcress (Lepidium appelianum)• Perennial sowthistle (Sonchus arvensis)• Russian knapweed (Acroptilon repens)• Leafy spurge (Euphorbia esula)• Hedge bindweed (Calystegia sepium)• Serrated tussock (Nassella trichotoma)• Columbus grass (Sorghum x almum)• Musk thistle (Carduus nutans)• Forage Kochia (Bassia prostrata)• Water Hemp (Amaranthus tuberculatus).The director of ODA has the legal authority to designate noxious weeds. Several Ohio laws provide for control and removal of designated noxious weeds along public highways, toll roads, and railroads, and on private property. The current noxious weeds list also contains the following plants, which will remain on the list:• Grapevines: (Vitis spp.), when growing in groups of one hundred or more and not pruned, sprayed, cultivated, or otherwise maintained for two consecutive years.• Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense L. (Scop.))• Poison hemlock (Conium maculatum)• Cressleaf groundsel (Senecio glabellus)• Musk thistle (Carduus nutans)• Purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria)• Mile-A-Minute Weed (Polygonum perfoliatum)• Giant Hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum)• Apple of Peru (Nicandra physalodes)• Marestail (Conyza canadensis)• Kochia (Bassia scoparia)• Palmer amaranth (Amaranthus palmeri)• Kudzu (Pueraria montana var. lobata)• Japanese knotweed (Polygonum cuspidatum).ODA is requesting public comments on the revised list of noxious weeds through April 27, 2018. Email comments to ecomments@agri.ohio.gov or mail them to Legal Section, Ohio Department of Agriculture, 8995 E. Main St., Reynoldsburg, Ohio 43068.last_img read more