Spotlight on Purewater meet at new JC track
Three development meets today will kick off what is expected to be another exciting year for local track and field. Two meets will be in Kingston and one in the western part of the island. In Kingston, the focus will be on the Purewater/JC/ Danny Williams meet at Jamaica College's new Ashenheim Stadium. The other Kingston meet, the Ted Dwyer Classics, will take place at Excelsior High School while Rusea's High will host the western meet.
The JC synthetic track is among the best in the island, and performances at the new facility should be good. All field events, except for throwing, will take place at the UWI/Usain Bolt track. The 400m hurdles will be a new event on the programme, and history will be in the making here, especially for the boys' Class One event, which will kick off the programme at 8:30 a.m. The first athlete to cross the finish line in the first heat will always be remembered as the first winner on the newly constructed track.
The boys' Class One 400m hurdles will be followed by the men's open, girls' open, women's open, and Class Two boys.
With the expected fast track and the meet being used as a qualifier for the 2019 Boys and Girls' Championships, there has been a record number of entries from more than 60 schools. Leading the way are the respective national champions Edwin Allen High's girls and Calabar High's boys.
Even with the high number of entries, meet director Ian Forbes expects the meet to end on time.
"We have received a very big number of entries, and we are going to ensure that the meet runs on time," said Forbes, who also stated that there will be starting blocks for all sprint events, and the spikes of all athletes would be checked for the correct measurement before athletes can take the track.
On the female side, all eyes will be on Edwin Allen and Holmwood Technical.
"We started slower than usual this season, but I expect the girls to send out early messages that they will be ready to defend their title in March at Champs," Michael Dyke, head coach at Edwin Allen, said earlier this week.
Holmwood's head coach, Dave Anderson, is also confident going into the new season.
"We have had an excellent preparation, and the team is fully rounded and I have seen the fight in these girls like those of former years when we were untouchable," Anderson said.
After failing to deliver at Kingston College, new head coach at Jamaica College, Neil Harrison, will be hoping to give his home fans a lot to cheer about.
However, he will be under some pressure as Calabar and Kingston College will also have strong teams.