Germany’s HDI quits insurance-linked pension vehicles

first_imgIn its insurance-linked HDI Pensionsfonds, the company is managing €43m, and in its Pensionskasse it has €1.4bn.Both products will “fulfil the contracts signed with clients” but be closed for new entries.HDI told IPE it was aiming at “market leadership” in outsourcing and financing pension liabilities, adding that it expected demand for such solutions to increase, particularly among small and medium-sized enterprises.It has also started the online portal HDI bAVnet together with service provider xbAV for the online administration and management of company pension plans.Speaking at the recent aba conference in Cologne, Vjaceslavs Geveilers, senior actuarial services manager at PwC in Munich, said insurers had been increasingly introducing alternative guarantees for the last 2-3 years, and that he had recognised a trend towards lower guarantees in products. He acknowledged that most new products still focused on accrual rather than the payout phase, but he said he expected this would have to change, “not least because of biometric trends”.Clemens Frey, a partner at PwC, said a lot of new products in Germany were “more complex”, which meant insurers had to adjust their actuarial models, risk assessment and internal control mechanisms.He also predicted the regulator’s oversight of new products would be “more intense” in future. Meanwhile, the German government has proposed amendments to Pensionsfonds that could make payouts more attractive but also more volatile.A first discussion in the parliamentary commission for labour and social affairs on Monday showed general support for the amendment. No new contracts will be signed from next year for insurance-based Pensionsfonds or Pensionskasse at German life insurer HDI Leben.In a statement, the company said there were vehicles in the occupational pensions segment that were “neither profitable for HDI Leben nor its clients or for which there is almost no demand in the market”.As examples, it cited insurance-based Pensionsfonds and Pensionskasse, also insurance-based.HDI Leben said it would continue to offer occupational pensions and aim to increase business in the unit-linked Pensionsfonds it has provided together with its owner Talanx since 2012-13 via the €395m PB Pensionsfonds.last_img read more

Amalfi Coast meets North Queensland in this Townsville charmer

first_img“We bought this house after our kids had moved on and now we are looking to downsize,” Mr Fittock said. “I will miss our terraced backyard, which backs onto the Castle Hill reserve.“It has these lovely grevilleas on it that are flowering throughout the year and are just beautiful to sit and look at with the birds chirping.” READ MORE “In the summer, you get the shade from Castle Hill which comes over in the afternoon. “It was the location and beautiful water views that really drew us in.”More from news01:21Buyer demand explodes in Townsville’s 2019 flood-affected suburbs12 Sep 202001:21‘Giant surge’ in new home sales lifts Townsville property market10 Sep 2020A few years ago, the house was revitalised with a significant renovation. “We renovated the house between 2015 and 2016,” Mr Fittock said. “It was a complete internal renovation. “We re-finished the timber floorboards and they look beautiful.”The house boasts Amalfi style terracing, granite rock features and a spectacular airy layout. Mr Fittock said they were only selling with the intention of downsizing and would miss the views and freshly renovated features of the home.center_img Slice of history offers endless opportunity WHEN John and Suzanne Fittock bought this stunning Queenslander in 2005, it had hardly been touched since the 1970s. The location and expansive outlook over Magnetic Island lured them in and they have spent more than a decade enjoying the serenity and convenience that living at 30 Stanton Terrace has offered. “The north-facing aspect is great throughout the year so you get the winter sun on the front veranda in the morning,” Mr Fittock said. READ MORE Timeless charmer with unbelievable views last_img read more

USACE Seeks Comments on Lake Pepin Plan

first_imgThe U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, is proposing to construct a habitat rehabilitation project at the head of Lake Pepin on the Mississippi River, located in Pierce County, Wisconsin, using material dredged from the Mississippi River.The Corps released its draft Environmental Assessment for the project recently and will accept comments on the document until by May 11.The proposed project was planned in collaboration with the Wisconsin and Minnesota departments of natural resources and other partners and would enhance and restore backwater habitat in Lake Pepin. A complex of four peninsulas, overwintering dredged areas, water level management features and shoreline protection would be constructed to improve habitat for fish and wildlife.Features were designed to reduce the negative impacts of sediment on aquatic plants and fish, as well as to create and protect floodplain forest and wetlands for migratory birds and other wildlife.The Corps will beneficially use dredged material removed from Reads Landing Dredged Material Placement Site in Lower Pool 4, located just north of Wabasha, Minnesota, to construct the peninsulas. The project could use up to 400,000 cubic yards of dredged material.This project was selected last year as one of 10 projects Corps-wide to participate in a national Corps of Engineers pilot program to use dredged material to improve habitat.last_img read more

Cross Country Semi-States This Weekend At Carmel

first_imgThe Boys & Girls Cross Country Semi-States will be taking place on Saturday (10-25) at Carmel starting at 11:15 AM.Batesville and Greensburg Girls Teams will be participating. Individually in The Semi-States include Megan Hoover- North Decatur, Ashley Sedler-Oldenburg Academy, and Abby Bittner-East Central.Oldenburg Academy and South Dearborn Boys Teams will be participating.  Individually in The Semi-States include Justyn Clark-South Deactur and Connor Bell, Caleb Moster, & Cole Nuhring-All of Batesville.The best of luck to all our runners at The Semi-States!last_img

Billie Lee Ullrich

first_imgBillie Lee Ullrich, of Aurora, Indiana, passed away July 4, 2017 in St. Elizabeth Hospital in Ft. Thomas, Kentucky.She was born February 13, 1943 in Cleves, Ohio, daughter of the late William Heimann and Evelyn Wright Rudolph.Billie enjoyed Word Search Puzzles. She was “Homemaker Extraordinaire”. She loved to decorate her home and took pride in every aspect of homemaking. She was a wonderful wife and mother. She was very devoted to her entire family especially her grandchildren and great grandchildren, She will be greatly missed.Surviving are her loving husband of 56 years, William “Bill” Ullrich of Aurora, IN; children, Mike (Carol) Ullrich of Dry Ridge, KY, Tina (Pedro) Orellano of Fayetteville, NC, Kim (Joe) Hamilton of Crestwood, KY, Eric (Annette) Ullrich of Aurora, IN; siblings, Terry (Lynette) Welch, Sharon (Richard) Reynolds of WI, Missy (Garrett) Krug of Sumter, SC; grandchildren, Billy Ullrich, Joanna Ullrich, Brittney Gonzales, Chelsea Murphy, Chris Deutsch, Tim Davis, Eric UllrichJr., Nathan Ullrich & Brady Ullrich; great grandchildren, Ian, Emilia and Leilah.She was preceded in death by her mother, Evelyn Rudolph, step-father, Harold Rudolph, Father, William Heimann and brother Floyd Heimann.Friends will be received Monday, July 10, 2017, 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm at the St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 203 Fourth Street, Aurora, Indiana.Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Mary’s Catholic Church Tuesday, at 11:00 am.Interment will follow in the River View Cemetery, Aurora, Indiana.Contributions may be made to the St. Mary’s Catholic Church or family. If unable to attend services, please call the funeral home office at (812) 926-1450 and we will notify the family of your donation with a card.Visit: www.rullmans.comlast_img read more

Jose to present end-of-year report

first_img A striker is a recruitment target this summer, when Romelu Lukaku’s future will be assessed after his season-long loan at Everton. The goalkeeper situation – what to do with long-term number one Petr Cech and his heir apparent Thibaut Courtois – will also be addressed. Mourinho will detail all his thoughts in his end-of-term report. “I like to do things in a proper way, I like to be committed with my opinions, and I do that written always,” said Mourinho, Chelsea’s most successful manager after a trophy-laden first spell from 2004 to 2007. “That’s the proper way, to do it officially.” Mourinho is bidding to mould his current squad, featuring the likes of Eden Hazard and Nemanja Matic, into serial winners after a first campaign in three years without a trophy. “Clearly, Chelsea had a fantastic team that lasted for 10 years,” he said. “That team is over. It doesn’t exist any more. Chelsea needs to build another team with some similarities to that one. Press Association Chelsea face decisions after Sunday’s Premier League season-ending match at Cardiff, among them what to do with captain John Terry, record goalscorer Frank Lampard and left-back Ashley Cole. All are out of contract after Sunday’s match at Cardiff, for which Lampard (illness) and Terry (knock) are doubts. “Some of these boys are still here, but not many of them. And Chelsea is building its future. “You could see this season that these people were important to give some stability, to give some experience to the team, but obviously they’re not the players for the next 10 years. “The players for the next 10 years have to be the Hazards, Oscars, Matic… these young guys are the guys for the next 10 years.” Mourinho has made his decision on Courtois, who has been on loan at Atletico Madrid for the past three season, but he was not prepared to say what it was and pointed out it is not the final decision. “I made a decision,” he said. “But I’m not the club. I’m the manager. I have an opinion. I informed the club about my opinion, not just a simple comment made in a corridor. “My final report will have, in detail, this kind of case (Courtois) which you can compare with Lukaku. “It was also a successful loan, a long loan in this case. I have my opinion very, very clear. “That’s my job. My job is to analyse things, to have opinions, and to make my decisions. “After that the club is the club and obviously I have to work for and with the club, and respect the club’s decisions.” Mourinho has often spoken of his wish to retain Terry, Lampard and Cole and believes the presence of the trio has been important this term. Terry has forged a strong partnership with Gary Cahill in central defence. “After a few months, I had no doubt that the security of the team was based on John and Gary, and Gary had an absolutely fantastic season,” Mourinho said. “I think he’s at the top of his game. Two and a half seasons at Chelsea now. For sure this has been the most complete one. “The national team, I believe, first-choice. No doubts. “The experience of a World Cup is something that is part of a players’s evolution. “He’s a humble guy who wants to learn, who accepts the criticism, reacts positively to feedback. I like him very much as a player and a boy.” Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho will on Monday present his thoughts on this summer’s searching questions to the club hierarchy.last_img read more

The Latest: Worker at new Raiders stadium tests positive

first_img March 25, 2020 The club’s statement Wednesday says that postponing the two-week grass-court tournament would not come “without significant risk and difficulty” because of the surface.Playing without fans has been ruled out. Wimbledon hasn’t been canceled since World War II.___NASCAR says in a memo to teams that one of its employees at Atlanta Motor Speedway two weeks ago tested positive for the coronavirus. The employee was not identified and NASCAR said the individual has been receiving medical care and all potentially exposed have been told to self-quarantine. The companies say they intend to restore jobs and compensation “once our business resumes to its normal state from this unprecedented stoppage.”The Bruins were the last team in the NHL to offer help to gameday employees who lost work because of the coronavirus pandemic — and then only if postponed games aren’t made up. The team is owned by Jeremy Jacobs, who is the chairman of the NHL board of governors and a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame. According to Forbes Magazine, the Jacobs family is worth $3.3 billion.___Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry is teaming up with Dr. Anthony Fauci for a question-and-answer discussion about the coronavirus.Curry, a two-time NBA MVP, will host the chat on his Instagram account Thursday — (at)StephenCurry30. Fauci is Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. He won his first world title in 2011 and took gold in his Olympics debut in London the next year. He was favored to repeat as champion at 74 kilograms in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro but finished ninth. He won the world title in 2017 and was third the last two years.___Churchill Downs has suspended the final three racing dates at Turfway Park following Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear’s “Healthy at Home” executive order out of concern for the COVID-19 pandemic.The Florence, Kentucky, track’s winter meet was scheduled to end Saturday. Turfway’s backside area will remain open because it falls under the “life-sustaining business” category by providing “food, shelter and other necessities of life for animals.”___ Kim Pegula says she and her husband Terry wanted to provide immediate assistance to “those in need and fighting on the front lines.”Money from the teams’ charitable foundations will got to the newly formed Western New York COVID-19 community response fund supporting the region’s non-profit agencies.Money also is going to several local food banks and assistance for health officials in purchasing protective gear and medical equipment.___Rio de Janeiro’s soccer body has extended its prohibition on professional matches in the state to the end of April. The initial suspension is valid until the end of March. The 2012 gold medalist and four-time world champion said he was disappointed when he found out the Tokyo Games would be postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic. He considers it a setback, not a deal-breaker.He turns 32 in July. “When I walked away from Rio medal-less in 2016, I contemplated retirement,” he tweeted. “Not because I couldn’t do it anymore, but because I knew that it would require another four years of tremendous work to get back. I was unsure if I was willing to dedicate another four years of my life to reach that stage.“Yet, here we are, and there it goes. The race that I was once afraid to embark on because of its length just moved its finish line a little further. But I’m still in the race.”Burroughs’ aggressive wrestling style and success has earned him a worldwide following. Shields and Dicaire were supposed to have a 154-pound unification bout May 9 in Flint, Michigan. Salita Promotions announced the postponement, citing the coronavirus pandemic. Salita Promotions said it would monitor the situation and work to announce a new date at some point.“Unfortunately, the real fight is outside the ring right now,” promoter Dmitriy Salita said in a statement. “Once our invisible opponent is beaten, we can get back to watching two undefeated champions and the two best super welterweights in the world vie for the undisputed world title as Claressa Shields continues to build her incredible legacy in female boxing.”___Wrestling star Jordan Burroughs has no plans to retire, announcing he is going to compete for a spot in the Olympics in 2021. As a result, the $750,000 Wood Memorial has been postponed. No make-up date has been determined yet for the major Kentucky Derby prep that was to be run on April 4.Last Thursday, the New York Racing Association suspended racing at Aqueduct after confirmation that a backstretch worker who lived and worked at Belmont Park tested positive for COVID-19. The Belmont backstretch is home to 585 workers who tend to the daily care of more than 1,300 horses stabled on the property.The pandemic has affected other prep races for the Kentucky Derby, which itself was postponed from May 2 to Sept. 5. The Sunland Derby in New Mexico and Blue Grass and Lexington stakes in Kentucky have been canceled, along with the UAE Derby. The Arkansas Derby was pushed back from April 11 to May 2. For now, the Florida Derby on March 28 and Santa Anita Derby on April 4 are still scheduled.___ Associated Press NASCAR was at Atlanta scheduled to race March 15 without spectators. But two days prior to the race, NASCAR postponed Atlanta and last weekend’s race at Homestead-Miami Speedway, which instead was converted into a virtual iRacing event broadcast on Fox Sports 1 with 35 drivers. NASCAR has suspended its season through May 9 and will race at least five more iRaces, televised on Fox, during the stoppage.___The NHL’s chief medical officer expects the coronavirus pandemic to get worse before it gets better.Dr. Winne Meeuwisse says the virus is “really just entering the rapid acceleration phase” in North America. That makes it unclear when hockey might resume. The National Hockey League has postponed its scouting combine, awards ceremony and draft that were scheduled for June. It did not provide new dates for the events.With the NHL season on pause since March 12, the postponement of these events did not come as a surprise. The league is still working on scenarios of what hockey would look like if it is able to resume this season.___Organizers of the European Championships in track and field still hope to stage the event in Paris in August despite France being locked down during the coronavirus pandemic.European Athletics says it asked officials in Paris for a feasibility study for the Aug. 25-30 championships. French officials reported their work has been “severely compromised by France’s national shutdown of non-essential activities” during the health crisis. However, European Athletics says “many athletes are keen” to see the championships go ahead as planned. It shapes up as the main medal target for European track and field athletes in 2020 after the Tokyo Olympics were postponed until next year.The European track body’s ruling council next meets May 7-8 by video conference.___The owners of the NFL’s Buffalo Bills and NHL’s Buffalo Sabres are committing $1.2 million to supporting local charities and health officials dealing with the new coronavirus pandemic. At various times, she held the American record in the shot put in the women’s 65-69, 70-74 and 75-79 age groups. She also was once the nation’s top-ranked thrower and ranked eighth in the world in the weight throw in the 75-79 age group.___Argentine cyclist Max Richeze has been released from a hospital in the United Arab Emirates, where the UAE Team Emirates rider spent 18 days after testing positive for the coronavirus following the cancellation of the UAE Tour.Richeze wrote on Instagram that two tests for COVID-19 had come back negative and he was discharged Wednesday.That status of Richeze’s teammate, Fernando Gaviria, remains unknown after he also tested positive for the virus. Two staff members for UAE Team Emirates also tested positive, and the entire team remains in voluntary quarantine. Woodward said his wife isn’t currently working in a hospital. She finished a nursing contract at the end of February in Arizona, where they live, and is going back to school for another license.The Woodwards are also joining Rangers general manager Jon Daniels and his wife, Robyn, to provide meals to health care workers at Medical City of Arlington and Dallas.___The United Center is going to be turned into a logistics hub to help with Illinois’ response to the novel coronavirus.The United Center and the surrounding area will be used for front-line food distribution, first responder staging and collecting medical supplies. center_img Rio is home to defending Copa Libertadores winners Flamengo.Brazil has more than 2,400 confirmed cases of the new coronavirus, and 57 people have died.___The Boston Bruins say they are putting 68 full-time employees on temporary leave and cutting the pay of 82 others who work for the team or Delaware North, which owns the TD Garden.The moves — which the Bruins called “temporary business stabilization measures” — are effective April 1. The family of majority owner Adrian Hanauer is making a $500,000 initial investment to the fund, which will be aimed at individuals, non-profits and small businesses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.The MLS team says the fund is intended to support a range of needs, from groceries to rent assistance and monetary packages. The priorities of the fund will go toward individual shift workers and service providers that work in and around the stadium when the team has home matches; small businesses in the area to help them stay open; and non-profits that support individuals and businesses in those neighborhoods.“The Sounders were born here in Seattle over 40 years ago, and we wouldn’t be the club we have become without the support we’ve always found in this amazing and vibrant community,” Hanauer said in a statement. “Now, as our world faces the new and unprecedented challenges presented by COVID-19, it’s our responsibility to step up and give back to the community in a meaningful way.”___Claressa Shields’ fight against Marie-Eve Dicaire has been postponed. Curry posted his plans on his Twitter account with an invite to all to submit questions. ___Clemson coach Dabo Swinney is open to the NCAA allowing more football practices after spring ball was cut short because of the coronavirus pandemic.The Tigers got in nine sessions after starting practice Feb. 26 before all spring activities, including their Orange and White scrimmage, were canceled.Swinney is not in favor of extending fall camp, instead suggesting a sort of NFL-style mini-camp depending on how many spring workouts the team got before spring activities were canceled. The Latest: Worker at new Raiders stadium tests positive “On behalf of the Chicago Bulls, Chicago Blackhawks, our athletes, our front offices and our dedicated United Center personnel, our thoughts and support are with the people of this great city and state,” a spokesman for the United Center said in a release. “Together, we will get through this.”___Mary Roman, a world-class senior athlete who held numerous national age records in track and field, has died of complications from COVID-19, the mayor of Norwalk said. She was 83.Roman, who also served for 20 years as Norwalk’s city clerk in Connecticut, died Monday night at Norwalk Hospital, Mayor Harry Rilling said.A childhood polio survivor, Roman began competing in senior track events in 1989 and won hundreds of medals, mostly in the throwing disciplines. He says the league is thankful only two players have tested positive for COVID-19 so far and is hopeful weeks of isolation will prevent more from contracting the virus. Players and staff have been told to self-quarantine until at least April 4.There is no timeline for when players might be able to start working out in small groups or report to team training facilities. Meeuwisse says the trajectory of the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S. and Canada will determine when that might be possible.Varying recommendations and lockdown regulations across the league’s 31 markets could impact how the NHL proceeds. Meeuwisse and deputy commissioner Bill Daly are still unsure whether fans would be allowed in for potential games when they resume.___Aqueduct has extended the suspension of live horse racing through at least April 5 because of the impact of the new coronavirus in New York. The second edition of the UAE Tour, a major early season stage race, was canceled with two stages left. Riders and support staff for all 22 teams were isolated, though nearly all of them now have been cleared to leave the country.___The All England Club says it is still evaluating whether to postpone or cancel Wimbledon because of the coronavirus pandemic and plans to make a decision next week.That’s when the club’s main board is scheduled to hold an emergency meeting.Main-draw play at Wimbledon is slated to start June 29 and preparations for the tournament are supposed to begin in late April. Fox5 in Las Vegas first reported the news.Mortenson-McCarthy says the area of the stadium where the worker was assigned and the surrounding vicinity were immediately shut down and sanitized. Work in other parts of the stadium has been unaffected and the stadium is still scheduled to be completed this summer.The Raiders are set to begin play in the $1.9 billion stadium this fall.___USA Diving will keep its Olympic trials in Indianapolis when the event is rescheduled. Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:A construction worker at the new Raiders stadium in Las Vegas has tested positive for the new coronavirus.Mortenson-McCarthy Builders said Wednesday the worker had not been in close contact with any other project worker and had been off site since last week. The worker is self isolating for 14 days and won’t return to work until cleared. With the Tokyo Olympics postponed until 2021 because of the coronavirus outbreak, USA Diving formally called off the trials scheduled for June 14-21 at the IU Natatorium on the IUPUI campus near downtown Indianapolis.The governing body said it will work with the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee and the Indiana Sports Corp to reschedule the event, though that decision can’t be reached until the International Olympic Committee comes up with new dates for the Tokyo Games.All tickets that had been purchased for the U.S. diving trials will automatically be shifted to the new dates once a decision is reached. Any hotel reservations that were booked through USA Diving’s site will be canceled.___The Seattle Sounders have established a relief fund to help support individuals and businesses in the Seattle neighborhoods of Pioneer Square, SoDo and the Chinatown-International District near the team’s headquarters and home stadium of CenturyLink Field. “Maybe if they said everybody could have 12 on-field sessions,” Swinney said. “So that means we would get only three just to make it equitable. But some of these schools who got none, they could get 12.”___Texas Rangers manager Chris Woodward and his wife Erin, a trauma nurse, have recorded a message thanking first responders and health care workers.The message was sent to the Texas Hospital Association and Medical City of Arlington and Dallas.“We’re just trying to say thank you to all of these people on the front lines,” Woodward said Wednesday. “The first responders are first on the scene to a lot of these things. … The doctors, nurses, everybody, they’re putting themselves at risk for all of us.” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has instructed the 32 teams to close their facilities to all but a select few employees by 6 p.m. Wednesday. In a memo to teams, Goodell said restrictions meant as a safeguard against the new coronavirus will be in force until at least April 8. Then the league will re-evaluate, using advice from medical experts and health authorities. The few exceptions include trainers and doctors treating players, security and technology personnel.The NFL has gotten some pushback for not postponing the draft scheduled for April 23-25 while the rest of the sports world is largely shut down. The league is developing a new format because it has scrapped the public events set for Las Vegas. ___More AP sports: and,Tampa Bay Lightning advance to face Dallas Stars in Stanley Cup finals, beating New York Islanders 2-1 in OT in Game 6last_img read more

Secure Innovations and Concepts Endurance Rental Cup : Gizmos & Gadgets; Monster Energy dominate round two

first_imgMONSTER Energy and the Gizmos and Gadgets teams were the dominant forces for the second round of the Secure Innovations and Concepts Endurance Rental Cup, held Wednesday evening at the GT Motor-sports facility in Thomas Lands.In the 600lb class, strategy and skill paid off for the Monster Energy team as they bided their time well to emerge eventual champions.A dog-fight between the Brava team’s Stephan Jeffrey and Monster’s Carlos Rodrigues ensued for the lead, with the duo ‘dicing’ from their introduction in the final leg.The Monster team came out .4 of a second ahead of the Brava team but were unable to extend that gap, as Stefan closed them down almost instantly, before producing a quick ‘set up and pass’ gambit on the less-seasoned Rodrigues.Packing a decade of karting under his belt, Stefan, who resides in Canada, called on every bit of defensive technique to hold off the Monster team and while the duo diced, Stefan ultimately fell out of the race with less than five minutes remaining, leaving the Monster team unchallenged.Opening their leg, the Monster team saw Kian Jabour take on the early challenges of two-time Caribbean Group four champion Kristian Jeffrey of team Brava and while he was overtaken for the lead about three laps in; Jabour managed to stay consistent.On the first mandatory switch 20 minutes in, Brava, who had built up more than a half-lap lead brought in Shan Seejattan while Monster swapped for Antonio Da Silva, who had begun to slowly close the gap, retaking the lead just before the last mandatory switch.Kristian copped the fastest time award, a 40.4 second fast lap for the Karcher Sweeper award.The Speed team, (Kamal Seebaran, Clint Seebaran and Rameez Mohammed) picked up third.Earlier in the evening, the Gizmos and Gadgets team ran untouched in their 500lb class, leaving team ICool second and Dericks Auto Spares (Shane Haley, Michael Whitehead and Sachin Ramotar) third.Matthew Phang set down a blistering early pace which amounted to a lap gap over the first 20 minutes before John Phang took over and extended that. Steven Nobrega closed off the evening in style.The second-place ICool team, consisting of Matthew Vieira, Elliot Vieira and Marcel Profitt had earlier trouble when they fell to third, but fought their way back of to second on the grid.Wednesday’s event was sponsored by Monster Energy, Karcher, Auto Fashion as well as Secure Innovations and Concepts.All roads this evening lead right back to that facility where the second of the two-day event takes place.Fifteen races are carded for the evening in various classes, including the 60cc, 125cc junior and senior as well as the Shifter karts. Four foreign drivers are expected in the father daughter duo of Ravi and Bridget Singh of Trinidad and Tobago, Barbadian Orry Hunte, and former Canadian karting champion Darryl Timmers.last_img read more

Thousands turn out to mourn Kobe Bryant as Lakers return to the court in LA

first_imgBy Rory CarrollLOS ANGELES, USA (Reuters) – Tens of thousands of Kobe Bryant fans flooded the grounds around Staples Center on Friday ahead of his former team’s first game since his death in a helicopter crash earlier this week that stunned basketball fans in the city and worldwide.Fans wearing Bryant’s Los Angeles Lakers jerseys laid flowers, wrote messages on temporarily erected white walls and shared stories of the 41-year-old, who perished along with his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven other people on Sunday.“Kobe Bryant meant a lot to me. I’ve been watching him for 20 years since he came into the league and I just love him,” said Lakers fan Karina Mendoza. “I want to thank him for everything he has done for us here in L.A.” “It’s a sad and a beautiful day. You can see all the people here and all the Lakers fans. We’re like family. Love you Kobe, love you Gigi and all the families.”Inside the arena, where tributes were expected throughout the game, Kobe and Gianna jerseys were placed on the two courtside seats where the pair sat at their last Lakers game.“I was surprised to see how much it affected me as soon as I got here and saw these makeshift memorials,” said 71-year-old Lakers fan Jim Bendat. “My kids grew up with Kobe and Kobe meant so much to all three of my children. So I sort of experienced all that along with my kids.“It’s almost like losing a child in a way.” Los Angeles native Andres Valle said people gained inspiration from the famously driven Bryant, who played 20 seasons with the Lakers, 18 of them as an all-star, while winning five championships.“He was an inspiration to millions of people, not just Lakers fans, but people worldwide,” Valle said.“Kobe was a symbol of hard work, dedication, putting your all into your passions, your craft, and so I think a lot of us were able to connect with him in that sense.” “It’s beautiful to see and I think that inspiration will live on forever.”Bryant and the eight others died when the helicopter they were taking to a girls’ basketball tournament crashed in foggy weather on a hillside northwest of Los Angeles, plunging fans into mourning and sending shockwaves through the sporting world.Following Bryant’s death, the National Basketball Association (NBA) cancelled a game scheduled for Staples Center on Tuesday between Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers, citing the need to give the team time to grieve. Lakers coach Frank Vogel this week said the tragedy was bringing the Western Conference-leading Lakers, an already tight-knit group, even closer together and credited team leaders LeBron James and Anthony Davis with helping the players manage their emotions.“I’m heartbroken and devastated my brother!!” James, who was seen in tears at Los Angeles International Airport on the day of Bryant’s death, wrote on Instagram on Monday. “I promise you I’ll continue your legacy man!”Earlier on Friday James posted a photo of a new tattoo depicting a snake and the words “Mamba 4 Life,” a reference to Bryant’s Black Mamba nickname. Davis posted a photo on Instagram of the two sitting side by side at the 2012 Olympics.Practice on Thursday began with some flag football on an outside field near the Lakers’ practice facility in what Vogel called “therapeutic” Southern California sunshine.“We are striking a balance of trying to make us feel good,” Vogel said. “Laughter is always a good remedy for something like this when it’s appropriate.” It was not clear if surviving members of Bryant’s family would attend Friday’s game. His widow, Vanessa, posted a photo of herself with her late husband and four daughters on Instagram on Wednesday, her first public comment since his death.Vanessa Bryant, 37, in the post described herself and surviving daughters as “completely devastated,” and thanked fans for their support.Although Friday’s game against Portland Trail Blazers will mark the first for the Lakers since his death, Bryant was remembered at Staples Center on Sunday night by performers at the Grammy Awards as fans gathered outside the arena in a spontaneous vigil. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences said the February 9 Oscars ceremony would include a salute to Bryant.last_img read more

Alumna readies high schoolers for careers

first_imgThe vision for Skillify started when USC alum Shireen Jaffer moved from Pakistan to Palo Alto, Calif. at age 7.While attending high school in Palo Alto, Jaffer witnessed how the extreme pressures to do well in school damage students. There were six suicides among students from 2009 to 2010 in Palo Alto alone. During that time, Jaffer realized that she did not have the same connections as her peers who had lived in Palo Alto their whole lives. Jaffer said that by age 14 she had become a natural networker to gain a competitive edge. The networking skills that she developed in high school set the foundation for Skillify, which helps students succeed beyond the classroom.Photo courtesy of Shireen JafferSkillset · Students participate in an activity hosted by Skillify, a startup founded by a USC alumna to help high schoolers prepare for the workforce.“We are not doing a good job of showing students the true definition and meaning of their success,” Jaffer said. With Skillify, she wanted to “show students how to find their value” by learning applicable skills that were not taught in school.Skillify provides virtual and one-on-one coaching for students as young as 15 to build their networking skills, prepare for the professional world and find mentorships and job shadows. In addition to one-on-one support, Skillify hosts a monthly conference at USC that bring together high school students to learn networking, communication and time management.“I’m fortunate enough to have support for conferences at USC,” Jaffer said. “People realize that USC is their dream school, so I’m welcoming people into the Trojan Family.”Jaffer has worked with high schools to introduce a curriculum that sets students up for success and hosted additional conferences there. College students are also participating in Skillify for the first time this year, because Jaffer believes too many college students are unable to realize their full potential.“We want to help students go from minimum wage jobs to be able to pursue a paid internship that they would potentially get a career in,” Jaffer said.In her sophomore year at USC, Jaffer launched what would one day be Skillify with seven students. The Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies helped Jaffer build her startup, and in 2013, she rebranded to the name “Skillify” to reflect success that is dependent on skills rather than grades. Now, three years later, Jaffer said she works with 180 schools and 4,400 students. Jaffer hopes that her company helps students look at and approach success differently.Jaffer is looking to expand to community college students, who she feels have more need than high school or university students. Community college students, according to Jaffer, are settling for jobs they don’t want and do not further their careers.“If Starbucks is not part of your career path, it won’t add to career development,” Jaffer said.In the essence of giving opportunities to all students, Skillify gives out scholarships to those who cannot afford tuition. Jaffer said that 60 percent of students in the program are from low-income families.“We want to make sure we are accessible to students from all backgrounds so there is equal opportunity,” Jaffer said.last_img read more

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