André Lowe, Senior Staff Reporter
Jamaica's team to the just-concluded IAAF World Championships in Athletics in Moscow featured 16 athletes who were representing the country at the senior global level for the first time.
In two years' time, however, when the IAAF's marquee event moves into Beijing's Bird's Nest Stadium, many of these youngsters who were in Moscow are expected to carry greater responsibility for the medal hunt.
Here is a look at Jamaica's Generation Next.
Javon Francis (400m)
Jamaica has been looking for its next top male 400m athlete, and after his big year, the 18-year-old Calabar schoolboy looks like the country's best bet. It will take some patience most likely, but Francis, whose explosive 44.00 seconds anchor-leg split in the 4x400m silver medal run goes down as one of the most memorable Jamaican performances in Moscow, is likely to be in a position to push for a medal in two years or so, if guided properly.
Kemar Bailey-Cole (100m)
Constantly referred to by his coach Glen Mills as the 'next big thing', Bailey-Cole came 0.03 seconds close to a medal in his first individual campaign in the 100m at the Moscow championships. A powerful leg on the backstretch in the 4x100m final handed him his second relay gold medal after his run in the heats at the Olympics last year. Four times below 10 seconds this season means he is beginning to find his range. Expect him to get stronger in the coming seasons, with a big break in 2014.
Stephenie McPherson (400m)
Jamaica's top female quarter-miler this year, McPherson has grown leaps and bounds after struggling with injuries in 2012. Three times under 50 seconds in her last four races, including her 49.92 personal best, a little more experience and a better-timed burst in the final in Moscow could have yielded a medal for the 24-year-old MVP standout, who finished a commendable fourth this time around.
Javere Bell (400m)
Coached by Jamaica's last 400m medallist at a major global championships in Bert Cameron, Bell, like Francis, represents the new school's Jamaican quarter-miler hope. Bothered by a hip injury in Moscow, Bell is poised to break into the sub-45-second ranks, and given his immense talent and scope for improvement, the sky, as they say, is the limit for this youngster.
Carrie Russell (100m)
An 11.01-second personal best in her last meet in Poland, Russell, whose explosive lead-off leg powered Jamaica to a gold medal and national record 41.29 in the 4x100m final in Moscow, has fewer distractions with school these days and will definitely be going faster under the guidance of Stephen Francis at MVP.
Kimberly Williams (Triple Jump)
Two close calls and three spots in finals at this level after the World Indoors and Olympic Games last year and, of course, again in Moscow, Williams is a bona fide competitor among the world's best. With her increased confidence and better execution off the board, she will continue to test her peers. If she stays healthy and continues her improvements, she should medal in coming championships.
Damar Forbes (long jump)
The World Champs finalist has the ability to push on and does have a big jump or two in him. He has learnt a lot in Moscow and can only get better with the increased exposure that he will receive after completing his studies and getting ready for more circuit assignments next year.