The most popular Jamaican track event, Inter-secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA)/Grace Kennedy Boys’ and Girls’ Athletics Championship, starts on Tuesday this week and will end on Saturday, March 30th.
Champs is about to begin its 109th competition.
Who will be the team winners?
On the boys’ side:
The talks are mainly about defending champions Calabar High, which is looking to continue its dynasty by pulling off a 9th consecutive victory. Led by the remnants of the dream team era that defined the last couple of years, including reigning 400m champion Christopher Taylor, 110 prodigy Dejour Russell and 100m hopeful Michael Stephens.
They will be tested by perennial rival Kingston College (KC). Although they lost star sprinter Jevaughn Matherson to Florida State University, they still have depth with Terrique Stennett, Nkrumie Bouwahjgie and Adrian Kerr. They also will look for points through standout long jumper Wayne Pinnock. KC is perhaps betting most on their great hurdlers, consisting of Class 1 star Rommel Plummer who has run 51.62 this year, and class 4 leader Jayden Brown.
As underdogs, last year’s third-place finishers, Jamaica College (the last school to win before the 8-peat) who with a well-balanced roster of sprinters, distance runners look to upset. Ryiem Robertson, Christopher Scott and Deondre McIntosh will look to rack up points on the sprints, while JVoughnn Blake will hold it down in the middle distances.
In the girls’ section:
The battle between central powerhouses, five-time defending champions Edwin Allen High and former winners Holmwood Technical is expected. Look for Kevonna Davis to help out with her 200m exploits, along with the Clayton Twins (Tia and Tina) who should represent Edwin Allen well in the sprints.
This should especially climax during the relays, mainly the 4×1, where both Edwin Allen and Holmwood Technical have broken 44seconds.
The preliminary rounds of the 200m, 800 m and hurdles will begin at 1 pm Tuesday. The first event final will be on for Wednesday.