Shelly on show at UTech Classic
WORLD Championships double sprint champion, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, will make her season debut in the 200 metres today at 7:40 p.m. at the UTech Track and Field Classic at the National Stadium.
Action begins at 4:15 p.m. with the men's javelin open and long jump, and ends at 8:15 p.m. with the men's 4x400 metres open.
Fraser-Pryce, who won the half lap event two years ago at the Moscow World Championships, won a 60 metres race in February at the Queen's/Grace Jackson Invitational Meet and competed in the 400 metres at the UWI Invitational last month.
It will be serious business starting today as the outstanding Fraser-Pryce sets sights on defending her title this summer in Beijing, China.
Fraser-Pryce had a low-keyed 2014, but was the country's fastest female over the event with 22.53 seconds at the Jamaica International Invitational meet. It will be interesting to see what time she opens up with today. American Tori Bowie is the fastest female so far this season, with 22.61. Stephenie McPherson, a 400 metres specialist, and her former MVP Track Club training partner, Sherone Simpson, will also run in the event. Simpson now competes for the Maurice Wilson-coached Sprint Tech Track Club.
Two women ranked in the top 10 this year will run in the women's 100 metres at 7:21 p.m. Following her personal best 11.10 at the recent NCB Intercollegiate Track and Field Championships, UTech's Elaine Thompson, ranked number four, will take on her eighth-ranked teammate Christania Williams (11.30).
In the men's 100m, the spotlight will be on MVP's Nesta Carter and his former training partner, Asafa Powell, who are expected to be among the starters.
The sprint relays will be hot. Following their surprise losses at the Gibson McCook Relays at the hands of UTech, Racers Track Club will be coming to avenge defeats suffered by both their male and female teams.
The top high-school teams will also be in action today in relay events as they will be using the opportunity to warm up for the Penn Relays. Following double wins at the Boys and Girls' Championships in Class One 4x100 and 4x400 metres Open, both St Jago High's girls and Calabar High's boys will be hoping for success once again.
Class Three star Kimone Shaw will bolster the St Jago quartet as she will join Natalliah Whyte, Shanice Reid and Petagaye Williams. Following the impressive display by their Class Two team, Edwin Allen are expected to insert Class One athlete Saqukine Cameron, and it should be a very close affair.
Calabar will be aiming at another low 39 seconds in the 4x100m. They will also be hoping to go even faster than their record 3:06.76 in the 4x400m. Michael O'Hara, who did not compete in the relay at Champs, could compete here as they look to send a strong message to rival teams St Jago and Kingston College.