SANTA CRUZ, St Elizabeth — Sixteen finals are down for competition today as the boys' eliminations of County of Cornwall Athletics Association (COCAA) Hanover Co-operative Credit Union's Western Athletics Championships, to be held at the St Elizabeth Technical Sports Complex in Santa Cruz, are set to start at 9:00 am.
The Championships will be held over three days with the girls' eliminations set for Thursday at Irwin High School and the finals set for the Montego Bay Sports Complex on Saturday.
Twenty-eight boys' schools and 30 girls' schools are set to compete for the titles held by St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) after they took the double last year.
Two new events will be contested at the Boys' Western Championships, the triple jump Class Two and the 80m hurdles for Class Four competitors.
Stephen Smith, president of COCAA, told the Jamaica Observer yesterday that "barring any unforeseen circumstances we are set to go tomorrow".
After their outstanding showing in early season meetings and in the relays at the 35th Milo Western Relays last weekend, Munro College look set to make a bid to retain the boys' title they lost last year, while STETHS will start favourites to win the girls' section once again.
Today there will be finals in all three 1,500m races, the classes two, three and four long jump, all three shot put and discus events, the high jump class one, two and four, as well as the javelin open.
Meanwhile, the first two rounds of the 100m, 200m, 400m and 800m, as well as the first rounds of the 4x100m and 4x400m relays will be run today.
Munro College's IAAF World Junior Championships 200m champion Delano Williams, who won the Class One boys' 100m/200m sprint double last year, will renew rivalries with Green Island's Odail Todd, who finished behind him both times last year.
They are unlikely to meet today, but all eyes will be on them, as they go through the rounds.
Green Island's Chadwayne Vidal and Gremiko Whitelock are expected to throw their names in the hat as contenders for medals in the Class One 100m and 200m, respectively.
The Frome Technical pair of Tafari Ellis and Delton Foote will seek to get into the finals of the Class One 400m, while William Knibb Memorial Laurel Gordon, who had a season's best 6.78m at the Milo Western Relays, will start favourites to win the Class One long jump.
While Munro College are expected to pick up a bunch of points in the throwing events and could lead after today's finals, Petersfield High's Stevon Crooks in the Class One shot put and Glenford Watson in the Class One discus could win gold.
Munro's Kino Dunkley could win the double in Class Two, however, after dominating the early season meets, but will get competition from Cornwall College's Warren Barrett.