Fri | Jun 5, 2020

Coach backs Foreman to break 19-year record

Published:Thursday | March 28, 2019 | 12:37 AMRachid Parchment/Sports News Coordinator
Coach Gavin James and Shantae Foreman (right) of Excelsior High School share a light moment prior to the start of the Class Two girls high jump event at the ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls’ Athletics Championships at the National Stadium yesterday.
Coach Gavin James and Shantae Foreman (right) of Excelsior High School share a light moment prior to the start of the Class Two girls high jump event at the ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls’ Athletics Championships at the National Stadium yesterday.

Shantae Foreman of Excelsior High School broke the Class Three Girls High Jump record when she soared to 1.80m at the 2018 staging of the ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls’ Athletics Championships.

According to her coach, Gavin Francis, she will rewrite the record books in the Class Two version of the event this year.

Foreman equalled her personal best when she jumped 1.80 metres at the Milo Western Relays at G.C. Foster in February, and, according to Francis, her training is suggesting that she will be able to better Sheree Francis’ 19-year-old mark of 1.83 metres at this year’s championships.

“In training, she looks like she can jump 1.83m,” Francis said. “Most times at track meets, she is running or doing the long jump and cannot focus on the event, but on Saturday, she won’t have to worry about that stuff so she can focus on getting the record.”

Foreman needed only one attempt to advance to the final of the event yesterday as she comfortably cleared 1.60m, which automatically qualified her to Saturday’s medal round.

Francis is also expecting great things from Kaliah Jones, who registered her personal best of 1.80m at the Digicel Grand Prix final to put herself in medal contention for the Class One girls high jump. However, Jones is going up against defending champion Lamara Distin of Hydel High and Janique Burgher of Edwin Allen, who have both cleared 1.85 metres.

“I am looking for Jones to win in Class One, and I know that it is a challenge because you have Distin and Burgher,” he said. “But after her performance at the Grand Prix final, she realised that she can compete with those girls, and I believe it is the time for her to just get it.”

The countback rule had to be activated at the Grand Prix final as Distin, Jones, and Burgher all cleared 1.80m.