Organisers say CARIFTA Games will take to the track next year

Organisers say CARIFTA Games will take to the track next year

Observer writer

Sunday, October 18, 2020

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The CARIFTA Games, the region's most prestigious junior track and field championships will resume next year, all things being equal.

If it goes ahead, the meet is be hosted by Bermuda, journalists were told yesterday during a virtual meeting organised by the North America Central American and Caribbean track and field association (NACAC).

The CARIFTA Games, which is traditionally held over the Easter weekend, was one of the major casualties of the 2020 sports calendar after concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic forced the organisers to pull the plug.

Yesterday's announcement came as a surprise given the ongoing pandemic with cases rising in some territories and air travel still uncertain, many persons had assumed the event would not be held, out of an abundance of caution.

In yesterday's NACAC Media Roundtable, in a response to a question posed by the Jamaica Observer, Mike Sands, the NACAC president, confirmed that planning for the three-day championships were ongoing.

“Plans are going ahead for the staging of the CARIFTA Games in Bermuda in 2021,” Sands said. He, added they regretted having to cancel the last staging,the first in the nearly 50-year history of the event.

The CARIFTA Trials that was held in early March, was the last track meet held in Jamaica after the first case of the coronavirus was discovered on the island, just weeks before the ISSA National High Schools National Championships were to be held.

If the championships are held, it would be the fifth time Bermuda would be hosting it, having done so in 1975, 1980, 2004.

It was the last staging of the event that Usain Bolt set the World Junior Record 19.93 seconds in the 200m.

The CARIFTA Games, the brainchild of Barbadian Austin Sealy, started in 1972 and Jamaica has dominated, topping the medals tables at the last 39 successive stagings.

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