Sat | Sep 23, 2017

Senior stars set to share spotlight at Gibson McCook Relays

Published:Saturday | February 25, 2017 | 2:00 AMRaymond Graham
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DESPITE a lot of emphasis on high school action at today's Gibson McCook Relays, competition among senior athletes in events for clubs and institutions should share the spotlight with the World Relays and World Championship on the calendar this year.

Several of these athletes will definitely looking to make an impression ahead of the World Relays considering there will be no trials for that event.

The likes of Elaine Thompson, Christania Williams, Megan Simmonds, Shericka Jackson, Stephenie-Ann McPherson, Anneisha McLaughlin-Whilby, Ristananan Tracey are all expected to feature on the female side. Yohan Blake, Kemar Bailey-Cole, Annsert Whyte, Jhevaughn Minzie, Peter Matthews, Javon Francis and Jaheel Hyde will look to get off to strong starts in what is expected to be fast and furious action all day.

After an epic Men's 4x100m relays clash at the Milo Western Relays, where Sprintec, UTech, GC Foster College and MVP were involved in a thrilling finish, add Yohan Blake's Racers Lions outfit to the mix and today's face-off is sure to bring even more excitement with the 2010 record of 38.08 seconds set by the Racers Lions under threat.

UTech, winners with 39.42 seconds in MoBay, edged out the Nesta Carter-anchored MVP (39.43) with GC Foster not far behind in third in 39.47 seconds.

Last year the Javon Francis-led Akan Track Club scored a very close win in the Men's 4x400m relay over Cameron Blazers and these two will be at it once again with the likes of Sprintec, GC Foster, University of the West Indies, Racers Track Club and Mico University College joining the party.

Akan with Francis along with Josef Robertson, Peter Matthews and surprise Camperdown Classics winner Kavon Nelson look hard to beat here and should easily defend their title.

 

CONVINCING WIN

 

Another institution, which is expected to make their presence felt today is Knox Community College in the men's 4x800m as they look to derail GC Foster College's dominance in the event at this meet. At the Milo Western Relays they lowered the Spanish Town-based team's colours with a convincing win where they took the event in a record 7:32.80, beating their opponents easily.

Following a blistering start to her 2017 campaign, double Olympic sprint champion Elaine Thompson, fresh off her Birmingham 60m sub-7 seconds clocking, along with her MVP teammates will be eyeing the 4x100m record of 43.13 seconds set in 2015 by the University of Technology.

Without Fraser-Pryce at the Milo Western Relays, MVP won easily in 43.61 seconds, ahead of Sprintec 44.73 seconds and with Fraser-Pryce expected to be in their line-up they should go much faster. However, Sprintec will now have the service of the in-form Gayon Evans, who was away on duties competing in the 60m indoors and should replace Ristananna Tracey in their line-up, which will give them considerable more speed.

With two members of Jamaica's Olympic silver medal 4x400m team, in Jackson and McPherson in their line-up, MVP look a sure winner in the women's Open 4x400m.

However, it should not be that easy for them as UTech with the likes of youngsters, Shannon Kallawan and Junelle Bromfield and Mico University College with the likes of IAAF World Under 20 champion, Tiffany James, Samantha James and Dawnalee Loney should push them to the limit and any of the two could surprise the defending champions.