Paul Clarke, Gleaner Writer
The customary cast of characters, led by a full-strength MVP Track Club, are set to descend on the Montego Bay Sports Complex for the February 9 Milo Western Relays which is now in its 50th year.
Meet director Ray Harvey said he is expecting an electric atmosphere at the meet, the first local track event of calendar year 2013.
"This Milo Western Relays is, of course, in its 50th year and all the clubs and a very good high school contingent will be on show," said Harvey, while speaking at the Relays press launch at the Gloucestershire Hotel in Montego Bay yesterday.
Harvey told The Gleaner he is expecting over 100 teams and individual entries in line with the last couple of years, but he believes this year's event will be special.
"With MVP out in full force, the Relays will no doubt be a memorable one, and of course last year they were beaten in the relays by Swept. They will want to avenge that loss," cited Harvey.
GETTING INTO GEAR
MVP Track Club will be led by two-time Olympic 100m champion Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce, Asafa Powell and Nesta Carter as they seek to get into high gear ahead of the 14th World Athletics Championships in Moscow, Russia.
This year, sponsors Nestle, producers of the Milo brand, will spend $4.5 million on the event that will cater to three categories - prep/primary, high school and clubs/institution. But key to this year's staging is the inclusion of the 100m Open and sprint hurdles races which, according to Harvey, will be keenly contested.
"We have not had these in a while. We are excited about these new events to provide additional races on the Mondo track for our athletes. We see it as contributing to their development," said Harvey.
The spring hurdles for boys will be run in three classes; Class One, Two and Three, while the girls will participate in two of the three classes.
Several schools will seek glory on the Catherine Hall Stadium come February 9. They include Cornwall College, Herbert Morrison Technical, Green Island High, St Elizabeth Technical High School, Munro College, Holmwood Technical, Vere Technical, Rusea's High and Edwin Allen High.