Edwin Allen High School and Kingston College will seek to extend important winning streaks at today’s (29 Feb) staging of the Gibson McCook Relays inside the National Stadium.
Edwin Allen will start in pole position in the girls’ 4×800 metres, and a fifth consecutive win is probable. Host school Kingston College has the fastest boys’ 4x400m team in the nation but could face challenges for three fast rivals.
Edwin Allen has been winning the Gibson McCook Relays 4x800m non-stop since 2016, and coach Michael Dyke’s undefeated quartet of Jessica McLean, Kayan Green, Abigail Pinnock and Rushana Dwyer is solid. After wins at the Central Hurdles and Relays and the STETHS Invitational, they held off a stubborn Alphansus Davis High School team at the Western Relays in a season leading time of 8 minutes 54.02 seconds on 8 Feb.
Formerly known as Spalding High, the Kishay Rowe anchored Alphansus Davis crew scored a fine time of 8:55.92 in its Western Relays pursuit, and Rowe beat Dwyer in class 2 1500 metres at Central Championships. However, Edwin Allen could strengthen its team with the inclusion of Central class 3 800m and 1500m winner Rackiesha Simms.
Kingston College was majestic in the Western Relays 4x400m as Kobe Simpson, Elechio Scott, Jaden Brown and St Lucian Michael Josephs zipped home in 3 minutes 10.75 seconds, ahead of Excelsior High, 3:11.46. However, a loss soon afterwards to Jamaica College at the Corporate Area Championships put a little dent in predictions of a fourth straight win for the boys coached by Leford Grant.
JC clocked 3 minutes 11.59 seconds to beat KC with Vincentian Handel Roban closing a smooth effort. The other dangers are Calabar, the 2019 Penn Relays victor, and Central Champion Holmwood. With Pan-Am Under 20 medal winner Bovel McPherson and reigning Boys and Girls Champs class 2 champion Tahj Hamm on duty, Holmwood will hunt down any laggards.
The Purples will have to watch Excelsior. Powered by 2018 Carifta under 17 400m hurdles victor Devontie Archer and Corporate Area class 1 400m king Demar Francis, Excelsior is a real threat, and though Travis Williams is gone from the winning Boys and Girls Championships winning team, his former teammates have formed a fast unit. If coach David Riley cleans up the faulty baton pass that kept his boys behind Holmwood at the Western Relays, Excelsior could race closer to 3 minutes and 10 seconds.
Archer has the fastest recorded 4x400m split time of the high school season at 46.6 seconds at the Corporate Area Championship.
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