Golden flurry - Jamaicans sweep to victory in Carifta cold
Raymond Graham, Gleaner Writer
IN chilly conditions at the Thomas A. Robinson Stadium last night, the jam-packed crowd, which included thousands of cheering Jamaican fans waving their green, gold and black flags, witnessed some awesome running in the 200 metres.
Natalliah Whyte and Manley Martin scored double wins after scoring respective victories in the Under-17 boys and girls events, while Shericka Jackson and Jevaughn Minzies recorded personal bests in winning silver in the senior category.
Powerhouse Jamaica topped the medals table for yet another year. In the mile relays that brought the curtains down on the three days of competition, Jamaica won twice, while The Bahamas and Trinidad and Tobago captured one each.
Jamaica ended with 28 gold, 25 silver and 15 bronze for a tally of 68 medals, ahead of Trinidad and Tobago with nine gold, one silver and 10 bronze. Hosts the Bahamas claimed eight gold, 12 silver and 11 bronze, while Barbados finished with four gold, 14 silver and two bronze.
In the 200m, Whyte raced to victory in 23.65 seconds while running into in a positive 2.1 metres per second tailwind. Jenae Ambrose (24.04) of The Bahamas and Tirana Marshall (24.05) of Guyana finished second and third, respectively.
"I am extremely happy I was able to come here and win three gold medals and I want to big up my coach Mr (Keilando) Goburn and all those who have been supporting me so far," said Whyte, after winning her third gold medal of the meet, following victories in the girls Under-17 100m and the Under-17 girls 4x100m.
In the boys Under-17 half-lap event, Martin left it late again as he pipped 100 metres champion, Mario Burke of Barbados (21.42), to win gold in 21.35 seconds. Jaheel Hyde, who some 40 minutes earlier had taken gold in the boys 110m hurdles, finished third in 21.42.
"I would like to say thanks to my high-school coach, Danny Hawthorne, and the Jamaica coaching staff led by head coach Mr (David) Riley for my win," said Martin, who had earlier won the 400m.
The race of the night came in the girls Under-20 200m as wonder girl Shaunae Miller of Bahamas, who also won the girls Under-20 400m, and Jamaica's Shericka Jackson, came face to face. Miller prevailed to win in a new championship record of 22.74 seconds, erasing the one-year record of 22.85 done by her compatriot, Antonique Strachan, in The Bahamas last year.
Jackson, who finished second in 22.84 seconds - also inside the old record - established a personal record. Third went to Carmisha Cox (23.66) of The Bahamas, as Kedeisha Dallas of Jamaica was fifth in 23.70.