Wed | Dec 6, 2023

Top local-based stars open seasons at Queen’s meet

Published:Saturday | January 28, 2023 | 1:00 AMRaymond Graham/Gleaner Writer
Shericka Jackson
Shericka Jackson
 Elaine Thompson Herah
Elaine Thompson Herah

For many years a number of the country’s top senior track and field athletes have opened up their competitive seasons at the Queen’s Grace Jackson Invitational meet and it will be no different this time around as several of those who have won titles at the highest level, including Shericka Jackson, Elaine Thompson Herah and Tajay Gayle will be in action inside the National Stadium today where the meet is set to start at 8:30 a.m.

Following her best season last year where she copped silver in the women’s 100 metres and gold in the 200m in 21.45 seconds at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon to become the fastest female alive in the event, Jackson of MVP Track Club will compete in the 400m at noon.

Thompson Herah, double Olympic Games sprint champion in both Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020, will make her season debut in the 60m at 7:05 p.m. for New Era Track Club. The likes of Jura Levy of Legacy Track Club and the MVP Track Club’s Natasha Morrison, Joniel Smith, World Under-20 100m champion Tina Clayton and Anthonique Strachan are also down to compete in the 60m.

At 6:50 World Championships 400 metres finalist Candice McLeod, representing Puma, will contest the 200 metres. She will face the likes of MVP trio of Sada Williams, Janieve Russell and Tia Clayton.

Gayle of MVP, the 2019 World Championships long jump champion, will be in action in the men’s 60 metres at 7:10 p.m. Other top athletes down for action here are the SprinTec duo of Oshane Bailey and Rasheed Dwyer, and Brandon Rodney of Swept Track Club.

High-school athletes will continue their preparation for the ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls’ Championships with Kingston College and Jamaica College expected to field a number of athletes. One of the highlights today will be the Class One 400m as Guyanese Sean Booker, a student at Dinthill Technical High, will be hoping to continue his good form after topping his rivals earlier this season in the 800m at the Douglas Forrest Invitational. Ugandan Emmanuel Rwotomiya of Kingston College, along with Jamaica College’s Mark Anthony Miller and Herbert Morrison Technical’s Deandre Daley will also contest the event.

Following their impressive early season showing where they were dominant at the Puma Fuller Anderson and Central Hurdles Relays and Field events meet former inter-secondary girls’ champions Holmwood Technical will look to continue that good form. They will be led by the outstanding Rickiann Russell who ran an impressive leg in their 4x400m win at G.C. Foster College a week ago.