Jamaica track and field superstar Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce insists she will not focus on the absence of American Sha’Carri Richardson ahead of the World Athletics Continental Tour, at the Kasarani Stadium in Nairobi, Kenya, on Saturday.

Instead, the nine-time World Champion is more intent on keeping her attention on the rest of the field that she is set to face, which will include 200m Olympic silver medallist Christine Mboma of Namibia.

Ahead of the meet, a lot of attention had been placed on the possibility of another 100m match-up between the Fraser-Pryce and Richardson, no doubt a spillover from last season which feature a highly-anticipated showdown at the Eugene Diamond League meet.  Just two days ahead of the Continental Tour, however, and for the third time this season, it was discovered that Richardson had withdrawn from the meet without a public explanation being provided.

Last year, the Eugene match-up between Richardson and Fraser-Pryce had been billed as a great redemption story of sorts for the American.  The athlete had missed out on facing the Jamaica medal-winning trio of Fraser-Pryce, Elaine Thompson-Herah, and Shericka Jackson at the Olympics, after being suspended for a month for marijuana usage. 

Despite the American’s presence, however, the Jamaicans finished in the same order as the Tokyo Games, where Thompson-Herah finished ahead of Fraser-Pryce and Jackson third. Richardson finished in last place.

“As far as I’m concerned there are seven other competitors in the race that I think deserve the same amount of attention and respect as me because when we each line up to compete I don’t think we are fearful of who is beside us or in the next lane.  We are just here to compete and give our best,” Fraser-Pryce told members of the media.

“So, if someone is missing from the competition it doesn’t stop me from focusing on what I’m here to do and getting the job done.”

In addition to Mboma, the 100m field will consist of the USA’s Shannon Ray, Maximilla Imali (Ken), Bassant Hemida (Egy), Rani Rosius (BEL), Patrizia Vanderweken (Lux), and Javianne Oliver (USA).

 

Bahamian quarter milers Shaunae Miller-Uibo and Steve Gardner have reportedly been confirmed for next month’s Paris Diamond League meeting.

The meet will be the seventh in the series, which runs off with the Doha Diamond League meet on May 13.  An appearance at the Paris meeting, scheduled for June 18, could mark a long-awaited return to the city for the reigning 400m Olympic Champions.

Miller-Uibo, who has won the 200m event at the 2017, 2018, and 2019 editions and the 400m, at the 2017 event, has not appeared at the Paris meet since 2011.  Gardiner has yet to win the title and last made an appearance in Monaco in 2019. 

The duo has been in splendid form early this season with Miller-Uibo claiming the 400m title at the World Indoor Championship and Gardiner registering a number of impressive times indoors before opening the outdoor season with world-leading 44.22 seconds at the LSU Alumni Gold meet.

 

Jamaica high jumper Lamara Distin has been named the United States Track & Field Cross Country Coaches Association National Athlete of the Week and Southeastern Conference Field Athlete of the Week.

The former Hydel standout has been recognized on the back of an exceptional performance last week where she set a world-leading high jump clearance of 1.97m to win the Texas A&M Alumni Muster.

The performance saw the jumper set yet another national record for her country and moved her up to No. 4 on the all-time collegiate list.  It also bettered the previous Texas record, which she also held.

Diston, who was born in Hanover, has been on fire this season, clearing 1.93m in four of the five meets entered so far.  Two of those meets have seen the athlete jumping over 1.96m.

For her country, Distin’s assault on the national record this season began with an opener of 1.96m, set during the Texas Relays, which bettered the previous national best of 1.93 held by Sheree Ruff since May 2010.

The Jamaica Administrative Athletics Association (JAAA) has pledged $3 million for its four-part Jubilee Series for senior athletes in a lead up to the World Championships to be held in July this year. 

The second meet will be held this Saturday, May 7 at the National Stadium starting at 5pm. 

The remaining events scheduled for May 7, 21 and June 4 will feature: 100m M/W, 200m M/W, 400m M/W, 400mH M/W, 100mH W, 110mH M, Long Jump (M/W), Discus (W/M).

“Track and field has been a major part of Jamaica’s history, and in the 60th year, we will continue to provide suitable competition for our senior athletes,” says JAAA President Garth Gayle.

“We thought we should offer our senior athletes an opportunity to sharpen their performances for the National Championships and other professional outings leading into the World Championships in July,” he added.

The events will be at the National Stadium and will run for two hours on each occasion running from 5 - 7 pm. As part of the offer, the JAAA will allow its dedicated fans to enter the Grandstand free of cost. 

The event is being held in partnership with the Sport Development Foundation (SDF) and PUMA.  

 

In the only race she has planned for the month of May, Olympic gold medallist Briana Williams ran a season-best 11.03 while finishing second in the 100m at the Pure Athletics Global Invitational in Clermont, Florida.

In what was her first race since suffered a tight hamstring at the USATF Golden Games in Walnut, California on April 16, Williams advanced to the final after winning her preliminary round heat in a wind-assisted 10.96 (5.3m/s).

In the final, she locked strides with Tanisha Terry until late in the race when the American pulled away to win in 10.94.

Maia McCoy was the best of the rest, running 11.20 for third.

Williams, 20, races next in the 100m on June 12 at the USATF Grand Prix in New York before she travels to Jamaica for the National Senior Championships scheduled for June 23-26.

Former Hydel High star sprinter Ashanti Moore, meanwhile, ran out a comfortable winner in the 200m. The powerful sprinter, who now trains at Pure Athletics alongside some of the world’s best sprinters including the 2019 World 200m champion, Noah Lyles, clocked a nippy 23.02 easily defeating Lily Kaden (23.21) and Camile Laus (23.63).

Lyles was equally dominant in the men’s 200m which he won in 19.86 over Trinidad and Tobago’s Jereem Richards (20.06) and his brother Josephus Lyles, who ran 20.20, his fastest-ever season opener.

Kimberly Williams jumped a wind-assisted 13.93m to win the triple jump by one centimetre over Naomi Metzer (13.92m). Sineade Gutzmore jumped 13.22m for third.

 

 

Citing the presence of the BVI Olympic Committee and financial support from a shoe sponsor in PUMA, Steve Augustine, President of the British Virgin Island Athletics Association (BVIAA) is not overly concerned about the possibility of athletes from his country switching allegiance to represent the United Kingdom in international competition.

Augustine was speaking recently on the online Talk Sports show with Michael Bascombe in the wake of the success the BVI enjoyed at the recent 49th edition of the Carifta Games held at the National Stadium in Kingston, Jamaica.

At the Games held from April 16-18, the BVI won four gold medals, two silver and a bronze for one of their best-ever medal hauls. Three of those gold medals were won by the imperious 16-year-old Adaejah Hodge, who was voted the winner of the coveted Austin Sealy Award.

But as is the case with many small island nations, there have been occasions when athletes choose to transfer allegiance to other countries in search of greater stability and support. In the recent past, Olympian Miguel Francis, who was born in Montserrat and resided in Antigua, chose to represent the United Kingdom in international competition.

Augustine said while the issue has surfaced in recent conversations with colleagues, he is not overly concerned.

“It’s something that we have spoken about at a high level, at the association level but we have never had to face that battle,” said Augustine, whose islands boast two of the best athletes in the world – Kyron McMaster and Chantal Malone – in the 400m hurdles and long jump respectively and who still represent the BVI in international competition.

“One of the good things about the BVI is that we have an Olympic Committee existing on the island, the BVI Olympic Committee. There are other territories that are under the umbrella of the United Kingdom that do not and for them, that becomes the obvious option to perhaps leave their home countries and compete for the United Kingdom.

“It’s not something that we have paid much attention to. It is indeed an option of athlete wants to do that, there is a process through World Athletics, you can’t just jump up and compete for the UK tomorrow, there is a process.”

That said, Augustine believes the BVIAA treats its athletes well which in all likelihood makes them want to remain at home.

“We were super happy a few years to be sponsored by PUMA, so our athletes are well geared. They look really nice in their uniforms. Those simple things that probably would have been problematic for us in previous years, are no longer an issue, so the little things that we do do, our athletes are appreciative.

“There is a whole lot more than we can do. Perhaps there is a benefit if they were to compete for the United Kingdom but there is no better place to be a king than at home.”

 

 

 

 

Olympic champion Hansle Parchment has two wins from two starts so far this season after he strode to victory in the 110m hurdles at the 2022 Drake Relays at the Drake Stadium in Des Moines, Iowa on Saturday.

Running into a stiff headwind of -2.5m/s, 31-year-old Tokyo Olympic gold medallist, clocked 13.47 to follow up on his victory at Velocity Fest 11 at the National Stadium in Kingston on Saturday, April 23. Then he ran a fast 13.20, a time that was the world lead for a few hours before the USA’s Devon Allen ran 13.12 in Annapolis.

On Saturday, Parchment who had his first injury-free season in a number of years proved unbeatable in his first race in Des Moines since 2016, holding off the challenge of Jamal Britt, who clocked 13.53 for second place and Barbadian Shane Braithwaite, who was third in 13.69.

In the long jump, the USA’s Kenturah Orji jumped 6.69m to defeat her friend and former roommate Chanice Porter of Jamaica. Porter unleashed a jump of 6.59m to take silver by one centimetre ahead of Ese Brume (6.58m).

Former Hydel and Kansas State high jumper Kimberly Williamson cleared 1.85m for third place in the high jump won by Vashti Cunningham, who soared over 1.90m for victory. Rachel McCoy was second by virtue of a cleaner record on the day having also bowed out at 1.85m.

 

Trinidadian Olympian Tyra Gittens was a winner in the high jump at the LSU Invitational where some Caribbean athletes had podium finishes on Saturday.

Lamara Distin literally continues to soar to new heights each week.

Omar McLeod and Natoya Goule claimed runner-up spots in their respective events as the 2022 Penn Relays came to a conclusion in Pennsylvania, Philadelphia on Saturday.

McLeod, the 2016 Olympic champion, who missed out on a place in the Tokyo Olympics in Japan last year, ran a season-best 13.22 for second place in the Olympic Development Men’s 110m hurdles that was won by the USA’s Devon Allen.

 The American, who ran a world-leading 13.12 in Annapolis a week ago, clocked 13.11 for a commanding victory in what will be his final full season in track and field. Allen, the 2021 Diamond League champion has signed with the Philadelphia Eagles in the National Football League (NFL).

Jaylan McConico was a distant third in 13.70.

In the College Men’s 110m hurdles, Phillip Lemonious claimed victory in 13.48. The Jamaican who attends the University of Arkansas was a comfortable winner over Jaheem Hayes (13.57) of Syracuse and Clemson’s Devon Brooks (13.62)

Goule, a finalist in the 800m at the Tokyo Olympics, ran a fast 1:24.09 in the Olympic Development Women’s 600m Elite event but was no match for the Olympic champion Athing Mu of the United States who was a runaway winner in 1:22.74, the fourth-fastest time ever run over the distance.

Nia Atkins of the USA took the final podium spot in 1:25.14.

Jamaica’s Rajay Hamilton lost out in a close battle with Ghana’s Alex Amankwah in the men’s 600m, clocking 1:16.00 to the Ghanian’s 1:15.88. Kameron Jones was third in 1:16.47.

Camperdown High School made good on the promise they showed in the heats on Friday to win the Championship of America High School boys 4x100m title, as action came to a close at the 2022 Penn relays at Franklin Field in Philadelphia on Saturday.

The team of Rimando Thomas, Junior Harris, Jason Lewis, and Roshawn Clarke sped to 40.13 to narrowly finish ahead of Jamaica College (40.16) and St. Jago (40.17).

Kingston College were also winners on the day as the team of Amal Glasgow, Shaemar Uter, Emmanuel Rwotomiya and Marcinho Rose combined to run 3:09.52 to win the Championship of America High School boys 4x400m final ahead of Bullis School from Maryland (3:11.90) and St. Jago (3:12.09).

Jamaica College’s super 4x800m team was victorious in the Championship of America High School boys final.

Omarion Davis, Handal Roban, Kemarrio Bygrave, and J’Voughnn Blake combined to dominate the field in 7:28.38. Ridge High School from New Jersey ran 7:41.59 for second while West Springfield from Virginia ran 7:45.14.

In individual events, Jamaican Phillip Lemonious, competing for the University of Arkansas, won the College men’s 110m hurdles in 13.48 ahead of Jaheem Hayles of Syracuse (13.57) and Clemson’s Devon Brooks (13.62).

Rikkoi Brathwaite from the British Virgin Islands won the College men’s 100m in 10.28 competing for Indiana University. Ohio State’s Eric Harris was second with the same time, while Houston’s Edward Sumler IV was third in 10.30.

Jamaican Olympic 800m finalist Natoya Goule was second in the Olympic Development Women's Elite 600m in 1:24.09 behind reigning American Olympic 800m champion Athing Mu (1:22.75). The USA's Nia Akins ran 1:25.14 for third. Another Jamaican, Rajay Hamilton, ran 1:16.00 to finish second in the men's equivalent behind Ghana's Alex Amankwah (1:15.88).The USA's Kameron Jones was third in 1:16.47.

Jamaican 400m specialist Rusheen McDonald was second in the men's 300m in 32.69, narrowly losing out to Nigeria's Chidi Okezie who ran 32.68 to win. American Will London III ran 32.71 for third.

Former Olympic and World champion Omar McLeod ran 13.22 for second in the men's 110m hurdles. American Devon Allen ran a meet record 13.11 for victory while his countryman Jaylan McConico was third in 13.70.

Jamaica’s Roje Stona, competing for Clemson, was second in the College men’s discus with 65.11m. Virginia’s Claudio Romero was the winner with 67.11m and Army’s Jamir Gibson was third with 59.04m.

Another Jamaican, Romaine Beckford competing for the University of South Florida, jumped over 2.23m to win the College men’s high jump ahead of Ohio State’s Shaun Miller Jr (2.23m) and Princeton’s Jeff Hollis (2.17m).

 

 

 

Holmwood athlete Samantha Pryce suffered a horrible accident in which her leg was broken during the final of the 4x800m relay at the 2022 Penn Relays at Franklyn Field on Friday. As a result, Holmwood Technical was unable to complete the race that was won by Edwin Allen in 8:54.58.

Minister of Gender, Culture, Entertainment and Sports Olivia Grange confirmed that Pryce suffered a broken leg and has been taken to hospital.

“I can confirm that one of our young Jamaican athletes, Samantha Pryce, who represents Holmwood Technical High School, was injured while competing in the 4x800m at the Penn Relays today,” the Minister said.

“She has been taken to the Penn Medical Centre and we have been informed that she broke her leg when she fell in that race. She is currently being prepared for surgery.”

In her statement, Minister Grange explained that Pryce and all the Jamaican high-school athletes competing at the Penn Relays are registered on the Ministry’s Athletes’ Insurance Programme and that they were making arrangements to ensure that the Holmwood athlete gets the best care.

“I pray for a successful surgery and her speedy recovery,” the minister said.

 

Edwin Allen was once again in dominant form to win the Championship of America High School Girls 4x100m at the 2022 Penn Relays at Franklin Field in Philadelphia on Friday.

The team of Serena Cole, Tina Clayton, Brandy Hall and Tia Clayton were flawless in speeding to a new meet record 43.18, smashing their own 43.62 which they set in 2019.

Hydel (Alana Reid, Brianna Lyston, Kerrica Hill and Oneka Wilson) ran 43.69 for second while St. Jago (Makada Linton, Shenese Walker, Abigail Martin and Breanna Clarke) ran 46.09 for third.

Lyston and Hill then returned to help Hydel take the win in the Championship of America 4x400m alongside Alliah Baker and Onieka McAnuff.

The quartet ran a new record 3:32.77 to eclipse their own mark of 3:39.99 set back in 2017.

Edwin Allen with Amoya Jamieson, Tonyan Beckford, Kacian Powell and Natasha Fox were second in 3:39.76 while Bullis School from Maryland were third in 3:40.88.

Edwin Allen got their second win of the day in the Championship of America 4x800m with Rickeisha Simms, Leanna Lewis, Rushana Dwyer and Jessica McLean combining to run 8:54.58 for victory.

Cuthbertson High School from North Carolina was a distant second in 9:04.67 while Union Catholic Regional High School from New Jersey was third in 9:06.14.

 

Hydel High School has been doing well at the Penn Relays in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania but their achievements might not have been possible save for the intervention of Express Canteen, whose last-minute efforts got the team on a plane to the USA earlier this week.

Hydel High's athletes have been blazing a trail of success and their girls’ team placed second at the recently-concluded ISSA/Grace Kennedy Boys' and Girls' Athletics Championships at the National Stadium.

In a media interview after the meet, Hydel’s head coach Corey Bennett revealed challenges that the school faced in securing funding for Champs and getting to the Penn Relays, noting that due to a financial shortfall they had to cut the number of members on their team.

Express Canteen, which caters to the school as its concessionaire, answered the call as they had done before and Bennett said it is testimony to the company's commitment to the development of some of the nation's finest athletic talent.

"The fact that the Express Canteen franchise has answered the call to lend their support to the Hydel High School team travelling to the Penn Relays shows once again their commitment to invest in Jamaica’s youth and the continued nurturing of their talents," Bennett said.

"We are sincerely appreciative of Express Canteen’s financial contribution towards our team, affording them the opportunity to compete amongst some of the best teams internationally.

"We would like to publicly thank the Express Canteen’s Management for their consistent and unwavering support towards the Hydel High School track and field programme."

The largesse was not lost on Hydel’s star sprinter Briana Lyston, who expressed her gratitude.

“The support for sports, and in particular the Hydel High’s Track and Field program, is truly important to us and most appreciated by us,” she said.

“The fact that some members of the corporate world continue to understand their importance to our development in the sport is simply great!”

Two of the events in which the Hydel High girls team will be participating are the 4x100 metres and 4x400 metres relays, in which they are favoured to battle for top honours, especially in the 4x100 metres where they came face to face with arch-rivals Edwin Allen and Ryan Foster, Chairman of Express Canteen, views their contribution as an investment in the next generation of athletes.

"Express Canteen is extremely proud of the exploits of all our schools at the recent Boys' and Girls' Champs. We believe in a holistic approach to our partnerships in schools, so when we saw the need of Hydel High to attend the Penn Relays it was an easy decision to support them," said Foster, who is also he is also the General Secretary/CEO of Jamaica's apex sporting body, the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA).

"We are extremely proud of Corey and his achievements with the Hydel track programme and believe this investment is not only an investment in Hydel but also the next generation of athletes that will become our future Olympians.”

 The Hydel High School team has also secured support from Florida-based SupaJamz radio and a perennial sponsor for Jamaican high schools competing at Penns, Team Jamaica Bickle.

 

Camperdown High led all qualifiers to the Championship of America High School Boys 4x100m final as the 2022 Penn Relays continued at Franklin Field in Philadelphia on Friday.

The team of Roshawn Clarke, Rimando Thomas, Junior Harris and Nickoy Drummond sped to 40.96 to advance as the fastest qualifiers.

Saturday’s final will also see the likes of St. Jago (41.06), Jamaica College (41.20), STETHS (41.48), Calabar (41.73), St. Catherine High (41.78), Excelsior (41.84) and Herbert Morrison (41.90) in the field.

Jamaica College was the fastest qualifier for the High School Boys 4x800m final. The team of Khandale Frie, Omarion Davis, Handal Roban and Kemarrio Bygrave ran 7:53.41 to be the only Caribbean team to advance to Saturday’s final.

In the field, Edwin Allen’s Trevor Gunzell (61.79) and Jamaica College’s Raquil Broderick (59.43) were the top two finishers in the High School Boys discus. Bergen Catholic’s Benjamin Shue was third with 58.82m.

Carifta U-20 champion and record holder Keyshawn Strachan of the Bahamas won the High School Boys javelin with a throw of 72.48m representing St. John’s College. Jose Santana of Eugenio Guerra Cruz in Puerto Rico was second with 60.29m while Wyoming Area’s Drew Mruk was third with 58.60m.

Jamaica once again got the top two spots, this time in the High School Boys shot put thanks to Edwin Allen’s Christopher Young (19.87m) and Calabar’s Kobe Lawrence (19.68m). Joe Licata of Gill St. Bernard’s was third with 18.75m.

Dejone Raymond of STETHS cleared 2.05m to win the High School Boys high jump ahead of South Brunswick’s Damarion Potts (1.99m) and Kingston College’s Aaron McKenzie (1.99m).

Jamaica College’s Uroy Ryan was second in the High School Boys long jump with 7.54m behind Lawrenceville School’s Gregory Foster (7.59m). Altoona’s Jake Adams was a distant third with 7.08m.

Kingston College’s standout long and triple jumper Jaydon Hibbert jumped out to 15.94m to win the High School Boys triple jump ahead of Valley Stream North’s Ryan John (15.02m) and Brandon Hutchinson of St. Augustine’s in the Bahamas (14.93m).

 

 

 

 

 

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