Girls in action as 124th Penn Relays gets under way

Paul A Reid
Observer writer

Thursday, April 26, 2018

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PHILADELPHIA, USA — Jamaican High School girls' teams will be defending six titles, including all three Championships of America relay crowns, as the 124th annual Penn Relays Carnival gets under way today in what is expected to be cold conditions at Franklin Field on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

Edwin Allen High and Hydel High broke the championships records in the 4x100m and 4x400m, respectively, last year, while Holmwood Technical won the 4x800m. Jamaican high schools enjoyed outstanding results and will be hoping to continue in the same vein this year.

The boys, who will get their competition under way tomorrow, also swept their Championships of America relays — Calabar High setting records in the 4x100m and 4x400m, while St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) won the 4x800m race.

Thirty-four high schools and five college teams from Jamaica are down to take part in the three-day carnival. And, unlike the last two years, this staging is expected to present an additional challenge to the Caribbean athletes with the temperatures expected to hover under the 70-degrees mark all weekend with rain also in the forecast.

In addition to the preliminary round heats in the three relays today, three Jamaicans will defend individual events — Edwin Allen's Fiona Richards in the discus throw, Holmwood Technical's Keneva Headley in the triple jump and Edwin Allen's Janique Burger in the high jump.

Jamaicans will also be involved in the long jump and shot put events for high school students.

Edwin Allen High, who set the championship record 43.96 seconds last year, will lead 14 Jamaican teams into the first round today, along with St Jago, Hydel High and St Catherine High, who were also in the championship final a year ago.

Vere Technical, who won the Small Schools championship final, are also down to run as well as Excelsior High, Tacius Golding, Holmwood Technical, Immaculate Conception, Manchester High, Papine High, The Queen's School, Rusea's High, Spalding High, and Godfrey Stewart.

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