Wed | Sep 20, 2017

The Wright View | JN Racers Grand Prix serves up key answers

Published:Tuesday | June 14, 2016 | 6:00 AM
Usain Bolt (right) with close friend and executive manager, Nugent Walker, after winning the men's 100m at the JN Racers Grand Prix on Saturday.

VISITORS to the island have been fascinated by our colourful language, patois. It has been the subject of numerous comedy routines, locals trying to explain to a foreigner the meaning of some of our sayings.

Well, the Jamaican saying 'you glad bag buss' was easily explained on Saturday night. All any local Jamaican had to do in explaining what is meant by 'you glad bag buss' was to direct the visitor to the faces and swagger of track and field fans leaving the National Stadium after our sprint king (and soon to be National Hero) Usain Bolt dismantled a world class field of sprinters, while cruising to victory in the men's 100 metres at the JN Racers Grand Prix.

 

SEASON BEST

 

After an uncharacteristic 'dip and fall back' at the 15-metre mark, Bolt caught the field and coasted to the line in a season best 9.88 seconds, leading home three other Jamaicans who all went sub 10.

The race is available on You Tube and I am of the opinion that when Justin Gatlin and the rest of the aspiring sprinters in the world view that tape, more athlete withdrawals from the Rio Olympics will be announced.

What a run!

To the doubters who were concerned about his lack of competitive racing (like me), Bolt is back!

In fact, it is now obvious that he never left. The next problem for Jamaican fans will be deciding who to cheer for as his compatriots at the start of the heats in the 100 metres in Rio.

Only two other Jamaicans can accompany Bolt. The list of probables is awesome. That list includes, but is not exclusive to Yohan Blake, Nickel Ashmeade, Asafa Powell, Kemar Bailey-Cole and Julian Forte.

I am advising all those who will be attending the National Trials later this month to camp outside the National Stadium at least two days before the start of the Trials to ensure a seat in a venue that can only hold 30,000 fans.

Crowd favourite and holder of the most sub 10 times in 10-metre races, Powell, is the man in the spotlight as fans have vivid memories of another crowd favourite Veronica Campbell-Brown (VCB) failing to make the women's 100-metre team for the Beijing Olympics.

Jamaica ended with gold, silver, silver at those Games.

Dare we hope for a repeat of that historic finish in the men's 100 in Rio?

In the women's equivalent, sprint queen and double Olympic gold medallist, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, didn't disappoint, winning in a time - which while not world leading - revealed that she is on the way to a full recovery from a toe injury that was responsible for a mind boggling poor race at the Prefontaine Classics in Eugene, Oregon.

 

BULLET START ON SHOW

 

Her usual bullet start was again on show and she eventually held on to win. But with Elaine Thompson running fast 100-metre races and VCB running 10.83 in Florida recently, Fraser-Pryce's many fans now hope that her world class coach, Stephen Francis, who also coaches Elaine Thompson, will get her back to her 2012 form by August.

The success of the inaugural Racers Grand Prix augurs well for the attempts by local authorities to get a Diamond League event here in Jamaica. It is obvious that Jamaican fans can find the wherewithal to support a Diamond League.

What is needed is the unity of corporate sponsors and the Government, to come up with the necessary financial guarantees to make this happen.

We, the people of Jamaica, the place where world class athletes are developed year after year, DESERVE a Diamond League event. All that is needed is the collective will and leadership that is prepared to subjugate personal aggrandisement for the national good.

Jamaica to the World!