Carr wants camps in buildup to 2016 World Juniors
AFTER mixed results from two junior teams at international meets over the past month, head coach of the Pan Am team that earned 13 medals, Michael Carr, thinks good planning for next year's 16th World Junior Championships in Kazan, Russia, is needed if the country's young athletes are to excel.
The country's juniors recently participated at the World Youth (Under-18) and Junior Pan Am (Under-20) Championships.
"It is no doubt that Jamaica has a lot of talented young athletes, and there are several things we need to do right if we hope to be competitive next year at World Juniors," Carr told The Gleaner on their return to the island yesterday from Canada.
"We need to identify our top athletes after Boys and Girls' Championships and the Penn Relays and have weekend camps. This does not necessarily have to be in Kingston alone, as there can be county camps," said Carr.
"We have a lot of elite coaches in the country, and the JAAA (Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association) can invite some of these coaches to work alongside the young athletes, as there are several technical flaws among these athletes, and working with these elite coaches, they can be fixed," he observed.
Carr also thinks that high-school coaches need to prioritise.
"Some of our coaches in high schools also need to prioritise, as they should decide what is important to these athletes, Boys and Girls' Championships or being national representatives, and some of them need to let go," he said.
Carr also called on the private sector to get involved.
"Leading up to Champs every year, there are several business companies which helps in
sponsorship, but they should not stop after Boys and Girls' Championships, they should pick up the baton after these Championships and continue for the next level, and they need to link up with the JAAA to do so," said Carr.
"I am a bit disappointed that some of these companies only come on stream when these athletes do well, but they need to help before because it is not only physical preparation that is important, as nutrition also plays a very significant role in the preparation of these athletes," said Carr.
Jaheel Hyde, Christopher Taylor, Jhevaughn Matherson, Martin Manley, Raheem Chambers, Nathaniel Bann, Akeem Bloomfield, and Obrien Wasome are some of the outstanding local talents that will be available for next year's World Junior Championships.
Last year, in Eugene, Oregon, Jamaica finished in 11th position overall after winning one gold, two silver and one bronze. Hyde was the gold medallist in the boys' 400 metres hurdles.