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110m hurdles puts O'Hara on top for male award at Champs 2015

Published:Tuesday | March 31, 2015 | 12:00 AMHubert Lawrence
Calabar High’s Champs superstar, Michael O’Hara (right), getting the better of Jaheel Hyde of Wolmer’s Boys', in the Class One 110m hurdles final at the National Stadium on Saturday. O’Hara clocked 13.49 seconds with Hyde second in 13.52.
STATHS' Ayesha Champagnie
St Jago's Natalliah Whyte
Shellece Clarke

Edwin Allen won convincingly, while Calabar survived a battle at the GraceKennedy/ISSA Boys and Girls' Championships as defending champions reigned supreme.

To no one's surprise, Edwin Allen won big with 321 points to 221 for the ever-improving Hydel and 219.33 for St Jago.

To the surprise of some, Calabar edged home by 15.5 over Kingston College (KC), 280.5 to 265, with Jamaica College (JC) third on 200.

The best effort from the Michael Dyke-coached Edwin Allen squad came in the Class Four 4x100-metre relay. His young sprinters were brilliant, clocking 46.90 in the heats and then 46.63 seconds in the final. Those are quite good times ... for Class Three.

Their Class Two teammates weren't

far behind. After Shellece Clark did the sprint double, her sizzling third leg helped Edwin Allen to the first-ever sub-45 4x100m time - 44.88 seconds.

Despite that dominance, the CHAMPS WATCH Girl Athlete of the Meet award goes elsewhere. In fact, it's split in three and is shared by Ayesha Champagnie of St Andrew Technical High School (STATHS) and Natalliah Whyte of St Jago.

Champagnie won the javelin, heptathlon and took the shot put with a record throw. Whyte, the Youth Olympic 200 champion, fought off high-calibre opposition from Wolmerian Shauna Helps and Edwin Allen ace Saqukine Cameron to win the Class One sprint double. Then she came back with fast relay anchors to help St Jago to wins in the 4x100m and the 4x400m.

Also wonderful was Tamara Moncrieffe of Holmwood Technical. She won both the Class One long jump and the open triple jump, with a record of 13.63m en route to the gold medal.

Calabar's captain, Michael O'Hara, earned automatic consideration for the CHAMPS WATCH Athlete of the Meet Award. Operating with no margin for error, he took the Class One 100m, 200m and the 110-metre hurdles in a matchup with Jaheel Hyde of Wolmer's.

Hyde had earlier produced a National Junior record of 49.01 seconds, but after a recall, O'Hara took command midway through the 110m final.

Alongside O'Hara and Hyde stands JC jumper O'Brien Wasome, Edwin Allen strongman Demar Gayle, and Akeem Bloomfield of KC.

Powerfully built, Wasome won both the Class One long and triple jumps. He broke the triple jump record with a mark of 16.00m. That mark didn't last as his teammate, Clayton Brown, edged past to 16.04m. Wasome won with a wind-aided leap of 16.24m.

The burly Gayle did the Class One throws double with a booming 19.52-metre in the shot, serving as his farewell to Champs.

Bloomfield went out at a lung-bursting pace in the Class One 400m and reached the finish in 44.93 seconds. At just 17, Bloomfield has a very bright future.

There were two other records by Calabar. Edward Clarke, O'Hara, Julanie Walker, and Seanie Selvin clocked 39.08 seconds in the Class One 4x100m. Already history's best schoolboy sprint team, they have the potential to break 39.

The last record came in the last event, the 4x400m. With Class Two 200m and 400m winner Christopher Taylor on the anchor leg, Calabar won in three minutes, 06.76 seconds

One critical area in the Calabar-KC battle was Class Three. Projected often as a 100-point unit, the Class Three Purples netted only 73 points

Who's the male Athlete of the Meet?

It's tight, but the 110m hurdles victory gives the award to O'Hara.

- Hubert Lawrence has attended Champs since 1980.