Heavyweights clash at Kirkvine
After an exciting start to the 2019 track and field season, with the staging of the Pure Water/Jamaica College R. Danny Williams Meet a week ago, action will get into a higher gear today with the staging of three meets.
Two of these will take place in central Jamaica.
Manchester High will be host of the Charlie Fuller Field Events Meet, while the JAAA/Puma/Fuller/Anderson Development Meet will take place at the neighbouring Kirkvine Complex. In Spanish Town at GC Foster College of Physical Education and Sport, the Douglas Forrest Invitation will take focus, with all three meets starting at 9 a.m.
At Kirkvine, most of the top female teams will be present and all eyes will be on the big three, as defending national girls champions Edwin Allen, for the second week in a row, will come face to face with Holmwood Technical and St Jago High.
There have been early whispers that the Michael Dyke-coached Edwin Allen team will be unseated at Champs this year, with former champions Holmwood Technical tipped to return to former glory.
Another former champion, St Jago, showed last week that they are going to be a force this season and will get another chance to impress today.
Holmwood's head coach, Dave Anderson, has been speaking tough coming into the season, but it was the Edwin Allen and St Jago girls, along with Hydel, who stole the show last week.
However, Anderson stated in an interview earlier this week that it will be a different matter today at Kirkvine.
"Last week, we did not enter a lot of our girls at JC, but at Kirkvine we will not be holding back and we will be coming with all guns blazing," said Anderson, as his team will be hoping for a good momentum going into the remainder of the season.
Following his team's good show last Saturday, despite a slow build-up for the season, Dyke stated that he is not fazed (by what) his rivals are doing at this stage.
"Last week, we just came out and gave the opponents a taste of what is to come despite holding back a lot of our athletes. I expect another good showing once again as my girls like the challenge and they will not be backing down," added Dyke, who stated that super Class Two sprinter Kevona Davis will not be competing today.
After entering a handful of athletes at the JC Meet, Kingston College will take a large contingent to Kirkvine, with lead coach Leford Grant noting that they will be looking to get early Champs qualifiers secured.
"We are sending a good contingent of athletes to Manchester, as the objective is to attain qualifying standards for the ISSA (GraceKennedy) Boys and Girls' Athletics Championships. We are also sending a few athletes to the field events meet and to Douglas Forrest also," said Grant.
For the Kirkvine meet, athletes will compete in 200m and 400m in all classes, 3000m for females and 5000m for males, while this time around, there will be no 1500m and 4x800m relays. Three individuals and one organisation will be honoured for their contribution to the sport. They are Reginald Reece (event starter), Dave Anderson (coach), the late Devon Clarke, who was a chief marshal at various meets, and the Jamaica Olympic Association.
At the Douglas Forrest meet, Hydel will be the top female high school team, while defending boys champions Calabar and Jamaica College will lead the entrants among the males.
Events to be contested on the track are 200m, 800m, 1500m, 3000m, 5000m, 400m hurdles, as well as the medley and 4x400m relays. In the field there will be long jump, high jump, triple jump, discus and shot put competition.