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Unstoppable Bromfield leads record fest at Western Champs

Published:Sunday | February 7, 2016 | 12:00 AMPaul Clarke
Junelle Bromfield of STETHS is all smiles after being presented with $20,000 for claiming a meet record in the girls 400m, one of the Digicel Grand Prix Athletics Championship events, at the County of Cornwall Athletics Association (Western Championships) at the Montego Bay Sports Complex on Saturday.
Jadau Burke of Aberdeen High School created history in becoming his school’s first medallist at a major athletics meet. Burke won the boys' Open 3,000m.


Eight records tumbled as St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) returned as double champions at Saturday's County of Cornwall Athletics Association (COCAA) Western Championships - part of the Digicel Grand Prix Athletics Championship - at the Montego Bay Sports Complex, but the undoubted star of the show was the champions' super athlete, Junelle Bromfield.

Bromfield used her scintillating form to send a message to all-comers at March's Girls Champs and the remainder of the Digicel Grand Prix Championship by blitzing two records.

The STETHS athlete shattered the old mark of 54.49 to easily win the girls' Class One 400m in a time of 52.43. Kimisha Chambers of STETHS and Segale Brown of Petersfield High took silver and bronze, respectively.

Bromfield returned later to obliterate the Class One 800m field in 2:07.37, destroying the old meet record of 3:13.53. Shaniq Summerville of The Manning's School was second and Shaneice Buchanan of Rusea's High placed third.

It marks a triple gold run at these championships for Bromfield, who had already secured the 1,500m title at last Tuesday's girls' eliminations at Rusea's High School.

"The feeling is great, but I think I may have disappointed my coach a little because he wanted me to take it a little easier on the first lap. But I pushed myself harder without anyone giving a serious challenge," Bromfield said.

"I was never challenged by the other athletes today. I thought it was an easy victory, and to get not one, but two records in one day, is fantastic," the usually shy athlete told The Gleaner.




With Western Champs out of the way and having no clear challenge in either the 400m, 800m or the 1,500m, Broomfield is setting her sights on conquering new frontiers.

"ISSA Girls Champs is my aim right now; I plan on getting three gold medals there, also in the 800m, where I am gunning for a fourth straight win in that event. Also, I hope to win gold in the 400m flat, as well as the 400m hurdles," declared Bromfield.

Bromfield wasn't alone in the books as multiple record holder, as Cornwall College's triple jumper Alrick Ottey twice extended the top mark.

His first mark came after leaping 15.56 metres to win the boys' Class One title, eclipsing the previous meet record of 15.37m held by Odaine Lewis. Ottey later extended the record, this time jumping 15.69m.

There were other impressive performances, including STETHS's Winsome Harris' record run to win the girls' Class Three 80m hurdles. Harris clocked 11.64 seconds for gold, beating the old mark of 12.07.

Nigel Ellis, another star from the STETHS factory, commanded attention as he made light work of the field in landing the boys' Class One 100m with a new record. Ellis clocked 10.20 seconds, erasing the old standard of 10.32 seconds. Mathew Brown of Cornwall College and Marquis Jones of STETHS grabbed silver and bronze, respectively.

Vanessia Pusey won the girls' Class One equivalent in 11.28.

Aberdeen High School, based in St Elizabeth, broke new ground by winning their first ever medal at Western Champs through 12- year-old Jadau Burke, who won the boys' Open 3000m.

Petersfield High's Antonio Watson ran into the record books, posting 50.82 to win the boys' Class Three 400m. His time bettered the old record of 50.87.

Munro College's Devante Heywood was equally impressive in the boys' Class Four 400m, setting a new record of 52.81 seconds.

The Digicel Grand Prix Athletics Championship events include the 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, 4x400m, long jump, high jump and discus.