TWO-TIME Olympian James ‘Joelyn’ Joseph, one of Guyana’s top cyclists from yesteryear, is still flying the Golden Arrowhead overseas, having copped a second- and a third-place finish at this year’s UCI World Masters Cycling Championship in Los Angeles, USA.Joseph, who hails from Linden and represented Guyana at the 1980 and 1984 Olympic Games, competed with some of the world’s most outstanding cyclists, some of whom he would have been familiar with throughout his illustrious career on the saddle.Reports emanating from LA state that on Sunday, Joseph was second in the 20-lap scratch (bunch), in a race where the winner broke away and lapped the field.James, according to reports, rode a masterful race which saw him break away with twelve to go in pursuit of the eventual winner but did not connect with him.On Monday, Joseph, racing in the 500m time trials, clocked 36.088 secs which was good enough for the third spot on the podium, behind USA’s David Wilmott (35.915 secs) and winner, American Kurt Sato (34.936 secs).
WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?Maybe you’ve never heard of cryptocurrency. Maybe you’ve Googled bitcoin or blockchain, and understand what those things are, but aren’t willing to throw money at an asset that can’t be stored in a bank or occupy a plot of land. Maybe you’re reading this in search of investment advice. (Read no further.)It’s probably easier to compare the job of a cryptocurrency hedge fund manager to that of a pastor than an investor. Throwing money at crypto in 2018 – let alone making it a career – is an act of faith. Adkison’s clients are his congregation; he is the 22-year-old shepherd leading his flock into the great unknown.Adkison’s faith runs deep.“I studied business at San Diego State and I’ve always had my eye on investing, things of that nature,” he said. “Technology has fascinated me as long as I could imagine. I was waiting in line for the release of the first iPad. I was in middle school. I sold candy to pay for it. I feel like cryptocurrency is the pinnacle of technological advancement.”If this were a baseball game, you could say the cryptocurrency market is in its early innings. Some experts call it the first, others the third. What you believe depends on who you ask and who you trust. This is just one of the challenges Adkison has taken on: to attract converts to his vision of the future for an emerging asset class. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Five years ago, he was a senior at Mater Dei High.A year ago, he was a junior outfielder at San Diego State, fast on his way to being drafted into the major leagues.Eight months ago, he was hitting .300 for the Dodgers’ farm team in Ogden, Utah, fast on his way to being promoted.Today, Tyler Adkison is the CEO of a cryptocurrency hedge fund. Adkison says he already has about 30 clients, mostly professional baseball or football players. His first client was Joe Kelly, the Boston Red Sox pitcher. Others came into the fold as the word-of-mouth gospel spread. Adkison said he is the first cryptocurrency hedge fund CEO to focus exclusively on athletes.“I met a venture capitalist and explained what I do: that there’s a need for pro athletes to have that investment vehicle,” he said. “What entrepreneurs do is find a need and solve it, so I started this company. That’s literally the name of the game.”HIGH SCHOOL TO PROSAdkison was recruited out of Mater Dei by the late Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn. His first year at San Diego State was Gwynn’s last as head coach.Adkison batted .292 as a freshman in 2014. His sophomore season ended before it began. A teammate was throwing batting practice in the preseason when a fastball struck Adkison in the face, fracturing his jaw so badly it needed to be wired shut.Healthy in 2016, Adkison added more than 100 points to his freshman slugging percentage. As a junior in 2017, Adkison batted .337 and led the Aztecs with 15 home runs and 64 RBIs. That was enough to earn the Dodgers’ notice. Adkison was drafted in the 32nd round, 970th overall.“Tyler was a good hitter, a little bit of an overachiever, going to be a corner outfielder,” said Billy Gasparino, the Dodgers’ director of amateur scouting. “The weight and bat power combination – he was a good player, probably going to have to perform his way up through the minors.”Adkison hit well for the rookie-league Ogden Raptors, batting .343 with a .945 on-base plus slugging percentage in 30 games. The Pioneer League is considered a hitter-friendly environment, enough to dampen some excitement over the raw numbers.The Dodgers promoted Adkison one level on Aug. 14. The Class-A Great Lakes Loons play in Midland, Mich., which scouts consider a neutral setting late in the summer. Adkison batted .208 in 15 games.“By that time of year those college players tend to be pretty gassed,” said Brandon Gomes, the Dodgers’ farm director.Adkison was also fighting an elbow injury. He had a bone spur removed in December, and spring training involved more rehabilitation than actual baseball. By the time the Dodgers’ minor league rosters were finalized, Gomes couldn’t say which affiliate Adkison would join once he was healthy. That’s how long it had been since Gomes had seen him play.‘A PERFECT STORM’Tony Gwynn Jr. met Adkison not long after his dad recruited him to San Diego State. They’ve remained friends since. Gwynn said he’s always appreciated Adkison’s intellect, even as a teenager.In spring training they met for dinner. Adkison told Gwynn he was thinking about retiring.“I was a little taken aback but after he got talking about cryptocurrency, you heard the passion he had about it,” Gwynn said. “I asked him if he saw himself in the big leagues. He said, ‘no.’ I asked him, are you passionate about what you do? He said ‘yes.’“I said, it sounds like you already have your mind made up.”Ultimately, Adkison agreed. During his down time from baseball, he was able to flesh out a plan for a cryptocurrency firm. He was able to attract investors. He formed an LLC, BlockTerra Capital. The tight-knit network of pro sports provided the first clients. In a matter of months, an idea had become reality.On March 23, the Consolidated Appropriations Act 2018 became United States law. Page 1967 contains language exempting minor league baseball players from the Fair Labor Standards Act, allowing them to be paid for a 40-hour work week regardless of how much time they spend practicing or playing baseball.On March 30, Adkison wrote on his Twitter account that he had retired from professional baseball.“I’m definitely not saying that my injury is why I decided to stop,” he said, “but as far as a perfect storm of what’s happening, it makes you think about life moving forward.”Every year brings stories of minor league baseball players realizing they have reached the end of the line. Maybe they have a retirement plan. Maybe they don’t. Few have what Adkison has at age 22, only two weeks into a post-baseball career.Besides a website, a business and a net worth, Adkison has the trust of peers who know little about the crypto market – and older folks who know a lot.“This movement of cryptocurrency is a very millennial-driven movement,” he said. “The developers are all millennials or younger generations. They’re all tech-savvy. The people creating and driving this space are us.“The next generation filling this asset class, it’s going to be us.”