'Eager, excited coaches and athletes' expected at today's STETHS meetSaturday, February 27, 2021
SANTA CRUZ, St Elizabeth — Reynaldo Walcott, meet director for the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) Trials to be held at St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) says he is expecting “eager and excited coaches and athletes” at today's restart of track and field competition.
Days after the Government gave permission for the resumption of track and field competition, about six meets, all being run by the JAAA, have been scheduled across the island and the meet at STETHS will see athletes from western and central Jamaica taking part.
The other meets are slated for Calabar High School, Jamaica College, G C Foster College, Excelsior High School and the National Stadium, which will be restricted to senior athletes.
The events scheduled to be contested are 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, long jump, high jump, shot put, discus for both genders in all classes for high school athletes, and among the top schools down to take part are national champions Edwin Allen High, hosts St Elizabeth Technical, Manchester High, Rusea's High and Petersfield High.
Walcott told the Jamaica Observer yesterday they were grateful for “the opportunity they did not have for the last eight or nine months,” and said the committee had “worked tirelessly to ensure that the permission that has been granted we will adhere strictly to the conditions of the permission, because the pandemic is not over”.
In keeping with the agreed protocols Walcott said they had “installed additional wash stations, more than we had used during regular school time” and were using two compounds, the community centre that adjoins the school for all the events.
“We will be going through all the protocols as they have been written down, from even before the teams start arriving. We have designated test spots where the athletes will be mandated to remain when they are not warming up, competing or warming down, when the buses arrive and throughout the day we will be paying strict attention and making sure that none of the protocols are breached.”
Walcott said they had planned a meeting for all coaches, managers and workers to ensure they were all on the same page about what was expected today. “It's a lot of work but we are grateful for the opportunity so we are pulling all the resources we have together to make it happen,” he said. “With some luck and strict adherence we should be okay.”
— Paul Reid
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