Maurice Wilson, chairman of the organizing committee for the JAAA/PUMA/Fuller/Anderson Development Meet, has high expectations for this year’s 37th staging.
Wilson said it is going to be a fascinating year for track and field at Kirkvine.
“It is the start of a decade, and so we expect the performances to be great. It’s an Olympic year; the weather is cool, the atmosphere is very exciting and very peaceful. The crowd is very supportive of track and field, and so we expect the performances should be great based on all of these things.”
Wilson, in his presentation, indicated that several world-class athletes competed at the meet including “Deon Hemmings-McCatty who is our first-ever female champion from the Caribbean when she got a gold medal in the 400M hurdles.”
Wilson also singled out Elaine Thompson, Sherone Simpson, Nesta Carter, Lorraine Fenton, Veronica Campbell, Usain Bolt, Jermaine Gonzalez, Aneisha McClaughlin, Rosemarie White and Anastacia Leroy as high profiled athletes to compete at Kirkvine.
“It speaks to how the meet would have served track and field in Jamaica,” he said.
Meanwhile, Meet director Jerry Holness said preparations are on target for this year’s event, set for Saturday, 11 January.
“The meet has set a standard over the years, so we need to ensure that we maintain the standard, but at the same time, we are working harder to improve on every single aspect of the meet,” Holness said.
The action gets going at 9 am with the 3000m for the female to be followed by the 5000m for male, after which the 200m will take centre stage.
Action in the 800m and 400m are the final set of track events.
Teams can now enter up to ten athletes per class. Holness said coaches want “to see where their athletes are, also to see how many people they can get qualified from the meet.”
“We have realized that once we run the meet smoothly, we can facilitate a few more. We are giving them a little more than the norm, we giving them ten.”
The meet sponsors are JAAA, PUMA, Digicel, Jamaica Standard Products (High Mountain Coffee), Fontana Pharmacy and GC Foster College.
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