Mon | Jun 25, 2018

Former star back as meet ambassador at JTA/Sagicor Champs

Published:Friday | May 25, 2018 | 12:00 AM

The 2009 JTA/Sagicor National Primary Schools Athletics Championships saw the unveiling of a young unknown talented sprinter - Tyreke Wilson - to Jamaica.

Wilson won his age group short sprints in that year and participated at the event each year up to 2012 when his talent was eventually spotted by Calabar High, which offered him a scholarship.

Today, Wilson will be at the 35th staging of the JTA/Sagicor Championship as one of two meet ambassadors at the event, which takes place today and tomorrow at the National Stadium. The other meet ambassador is Aiko Jones of Wolmer's Girls.

Wilson grew up in Portland and moved to Kingston with his mother in 2009 but found it hard to get into a Kingston school in the middle of the school year. As a result, he attended Ensom City Primary in St Catherine.




With other schools offering him scholarships back then, he chose Calabar because his friends, Christopher Taylor and Michael Stephens, also thought that it would be a great platform for personal development, and all three were right.

In his first year at Calabar, he won silver medals in both the 100m and 4x100m, being the first 13-year-old locally to run under 11 seconds, crossing the line in 10.99 in 2012.

The year 2013 is one Wilson will never forget. At 13, he captained the Jamaica team to the Caribbean Teachers Union (CTU) track meet in Trinidad, where he won the 100m and 200m.

"This was my first time travelling to another Caribbean country, where I met a lot of new friends. These friendships continue even now as we meet at Carifta and other junior games. The years at the Sagicor Championship allowed me to compete with the best across the island, which was fun and a little nerve-wracking, but it also taught me how to handle losing a race", Wilson revealed.

Having been so successful on the track and in the classroom, it was easy for Sagicor to ask him to be an ambassador for their meet.

In his career thus far, some performances still linger such as winning the 100m and the 4x100m for Calabar at the 2018 Boys' Champs. Back in 2017, with the same relay team, they set a new world record for high school teams of 39 seconds. He then placed third in the 100m at the World Youth Games (U18) in Nairobi, Kenya.