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Mega clash!!! - World's finest for 100m showdowns at Racers Grand Prix

Published:Thursday | May 26, 2016 | 12:00 AMLivingston Scott
Yohan Blake
Usain Bolt
Asafa Powell
Glen Mills (second right), president of the Racers Track Club, speaks with sponsors of the Racers Track and Field Classic during a press conference at The Jamaica Pegasus Hotel yesterday. They are (from left) Leon Mitchell, assistant general manager, Jamaica National Building Society; Kamal Powell, senior sponsorship and development manager, Digicel Group; and KFC Jamaica’s Andrei Roper.
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A mega men's 100m contest will take centre stage at the JN Racers Grand Prix track and field athletics meet at the National Stadium on Saturday, June 11.

The meet was launched at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel yesterday, and organisers promise a plethora of world stars for the 15-event spectacle.

The men's 100m promises to be a monster clash. The blue-riband event boasts a line-up that can rival any major track and field meet across the globe, with three of the world's finest sprinters - back-to-back sprint double Olympic and World champion, Usain Bolt; former world 100 metres champion, Yohan Blake; along with the man with the most sub-10 100m in history, Asafa Powell, himself also a former World record holder.

"In the men's 100m, the world's fastest man (Bolt) will be on show, and he will be up against the second fastest man alive (Blake) and the most decorated sub-10 100m runner, Asafa Powell," declared Racers Track Club president and head coach, Glen Mills.

"Judging from what has been happening, they are all rounding into top shape, and I assure it is going to be thrilling, exciting and a very fast race," he predicted.

Also in the race are 2015 World student games 100 metres winner, Akani Simbine, Nickel Ashmeade, Jason Livermore and Ramon Gittens of Barbados.

"We are trying to encourage our Caribbean athletes, so we cater to our Caribbean neighbours," he added.

The female sprint event also boasts an impressive line-up, with sprint queen Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce as the headline act. She will take on World Indoor champion, Barbara Pierre, Carmelita Jeter, Ramona Burchell, Natasha Morrison, Michelle-Lee Ahye and Shelly-Ann Baptiste.

"This is also a strong and exclusive line-up for the women's 100m," Mills noted.

Also, Warren Weir, Rasheed Dwyer, Alando Edward, Miguel Francis, Zharnel Hughes and Wallace Spearmon make up an exciting 200m field.

For the women's equivalent, American Tori Bowie (fastest 100m time this year) and Bahamas star Shaunae Miller will feature.

The men's 400 metres will showcase fast-rising Jamaican quarter-milers Javon Francis and Rusheen McDonald, plus and five other runners who have gone under 45 seconds.

The female one-lap event will feature local and international stars such as Christine Day, Natasha Hastings and Anastasia LeRoy.

There will be a special 300 metres race, which will be underlined by 2008 Olympic 400m champion, LaShawn Merritt.

 

MEN'S SPRINT HURDLES

 

Hansle Parchment, Jason Richardson and Deuce Carter will headline the men's sprint hurdles, while Queen Harrison and Megan Simmonds number among the female participants.

Meanwhile, Mills expects impressive performances from Jamaican athletes, with the national trials just around the corner.

"We are expecting fast times as the athletes are in top form with the (national) trials just a few days away," he commented.

Field events at the meet will be given a special attention.

"We want it so designed that the field events are spotlighted, so they (field athletes) too can be motivated by the crowd to put up quality performances," Mills outlined.

The Racers Grand Prix partnered with a number of world renown sport providers such as ESPN and Eurosports to broadcast the meet to Brazil, France, USA, the Middle East, Romania, South Africa and Mexico.

Carlene Edwards, sales, promotions and events manager of title sponsors Jamaica National, said they couldn't resist the opportunity to bring world class athletics to Jamaica.

"We have committed our resources to bring some of the world's greatest athletes to Jamaica and we anticipate the rekindling of old rivalries and new camaraderie," she said.