Wed | Aug 16, 2017

Russell looking to put on a show at Penns

Published:Thursday | April 21, 2016 | 4:00 AMShayne Fairman
File Russell

Janieve Russell remains confident of excelling again at the upcoming Penn Relays, which will be held at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, from April 28-30.

"They (fans) are expecting great times. They are expecting a show and I am just going out there to use Penn Relays as a training ground again," said Russell.

Russell, a University of Technology (UTech) student, competed at Penns for eight years - five for her alma mater Holmwood Technical and three years for UTech.

"I have a lot of experience. Penn Relays is very cold and thing, and a lot of athletes are not used to the climate because they are always in the tropical area, and to know that I have been travelling to Penn Relays for eight years, I know the feeling, the crowd and the atmosphere that we are going into," Russell observed.

While clocking a personal best in the 2015 World Championships last year, Russell not only reached the final, but placed fifth with a lifetime best of 54.64 seconds.

"Yes, I am ready. There is a lot of expectation from other athletes and your fans and people who are looking out there and saying she is a World Championship finalist and she is representing her school," said Russell.

"They are expecting great times. They are expecting a show and I am just going out there to use Penn Relays as a training ground again."

She added: "The 4x400 will help with my endurance and the 4x200m will help with my speed. I am just going out there confident and just ready to perform.

"So it's a good feeling to know that I am well prepared and just going out there to showcase," she told The Gleaner in an interview after FLOW Foundation gave a 16 per cent increase of $4 million and 30 thousand to 28 high school and tertiary institutions to offset costs associated with competing at the event, at their head office on Half-Way Tree Road on Tuesday.

OTHER ATHLETES

There were a number of other outstanding athletes present.

Calabar High's sensation, Christopher Taylor, who will compete at his first Penn Relays, said: "I feel very excited. I am gonna go out there and do the best for my school."

Also, the Convent of Mercy Academy (Alpha) Zinedine Russell, who finished second overall in the girls Open heptathlon at Champs, said: "I am looking forward to getting the plaque for my school."

She will compete in the 400m.