Tracks needed next year?
Usually, track and field fans know exactly where they will go when the local high school season begins. In 2019, necessary work on track facilities may force some changes. Earlier this week, it was announced that the Western Relays will move from Montego Bay to Spanish Town. Other venue changes could follow.
The 2019 Western Relays will be staged at the G.C. Foster College for Physical Education and Sport in Angels, Spanish Town. The relocation has been occasioned by the condition of the track at the meet's home venue, the Catherine Hall Sports Complex in Montego Bay.
News of the relocation came in a release from the organisers this week, and said, "as a result of the poor condition of the track at the Montego Bay Stadium, the 2019 Milo Western Relays will be staged at the G.C. Foster College in Angels, St Catherine."
As usual, the relays are set for the second Saturday in February, which falls on the ninth in 2019.
The meet was last staged at the sports college in 2010 when work on the Montego Bay facility was under way.
In a recent interview, Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association president Warren Blake hinted at the possible effect of work to be done at the National Stadium. On that occasion, he advised the work on the synthetic track at the Stadium East was expected to start early in the new year.
"It should be ready in time for Gibson Relays," Dr Blake said.
However, other meets might have to shuffle.
"It might affect a few of the meets, but we have alternatives because (the) Jamaica College track should be coming on stream in early January," he added.
The Jamaica College Invitational is set for January 5, with the Ted Dwyer Invitational at Excelsior and the Herbert Morrison First Chance meet also scheduled for that date.
Blake welcomed the development at Jamaica College.
"So, you know, we should be blessed with an additional track in the Corporate Area," he said.
The new track will add to the tracks at Calabar High School, Kingston College, and the Mona Campus of The University of the West Indies.
Last year, the G.C. Foster track hosted the Douglas Forrest Invitational and the Central Hurdles and Relays meet in January. The latter event is held on the same day as the Wint/McKenley Classic at Calabar.