Taylor set to make season's debut at McKenley/Wint Classic

...Three other athletics meets on today

Observer senior reporter

Saturday, January 19, 2019

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NATIONAL 400m champion Christopher Taylor will make his much-anticipated schoolboy seasonal debut today at the McKenley/Wint Track and Field Classic at Calabar High School, which is one of four development meets on today.

The other three meets are the Central Hurdles and Relays at G C Foster, the Big Shot Invitational at Excelsior High School, and North Central Development Meet in Discovery Bay, St Ann.

Taylor, who won his first senior national title last year in the 400m, is in his final year at school and all eyes will be focused on him as he attempts to break both the 200m and 400m high school records of 20.25 and 44.93 held by Usain Bolt and Akeem Bloomfield, respectively.

With his ambitions set on making Jamaica's teams to the IAAF World Championships in Doha, Taylor might not be in peak condition come March.

But word on the ground is that he is in exceptional condition and fans will be eager to get a glimpse of him today, whether he competes in the 100m or 400m.

But the McKenley/Wint Classic is not only about Taylor, as over 70 schools are registered involving the top boys and girls from last year's athletics championships.

Schools that amass the highest number of points in both boys' and girls' sections in the 400m, long jump and discus events will walk away with $40,000. Points will be awarded to the top eight finishers in each event across all classes.

Only the top two athletes from each school will be scored and entries from host, Calabar High School, will not be scored.

And for the first time a race will be run in honour of a dedicated Calabar old boy Kashief Bernard, who was killed in December 2018. Bernard served as an assistant athletics coach up to his untimely death. The Class One 1500m for boys and girls will be run in his honour, and cash prizes of $20,000 each will be awarded to the winning schools.

Also in action will be top discus thrower Fedrick Dacres, who is ranked number two in the world and will be looking to set a world-leading mark like he always does locally.

Meanwhile, down at Mountain View the throwers will be in action at the Big Shot Inviataional, starting at 8:30 am at Excelsior High School.

Only three events will be contested in the javelin, discus and shot put for classes one, two and three, along with institutions and clubs.

Then across to St Catherine at G C Foster College will be the Central Hurdles and Relays starting at 8:30 am and scheduled to conclude at 6:00 pm.

Among the events to be contested are the 60m, 70m, 80m, 100m, 110m and 400m hurdles; and the 4x100, 4x400, 4x800 relays. Also, there will be competition in the 400m, 2000m Steeplechase, Open Boys and Girls, 60m, and 200m.

In the field, the events are long jump, high Jump, triple jump, discus, shot put and javelin.

Discovery Bay in St Ann will be host to the North Central Development Meet and the events are 1500m, 100m, 400m, 800m, 3000m, 5000m, 4 x100 for Primary /Prep schools, 4 x400 metres Open, discus and shot put.

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