In an exciting end to the European Union-Jamaica 5K race on Sunday, the male top performers provided a nail-biting finish.
Garfield Gordon, the winner, and Noel Ellis, second-place finisher, both crossed the line in 00:16:07, while Dwayne Graham placed third with a time of 00:16:17.
The women's run event saw Jozanne Harris finishing strong to claim first place in 00:20:00, after her recent win at the Sigma 5K. Michelle McNally placed second with a time of 00:22:00 and Pauline Murphy placed third in 00:23:00. Both male and female top-three winners in the EU-JA 5K were the same in the recent Sigma 5K, with the difference being Noel Ellis moving from third place in the Sigma race to place second in Sunday's EU-JA 5K.
Over 2,000 persons turned out for the race event, with the first 2,000 finishers receiving a special commemorative medal. Hosted by patron of the event, broadcaster and social media influencer Khadine "Miss Kitty" Hylton, scores of the participants remained for post-race entertainment, which featured dancehall sensation Romario "Laa Lee Ranks" Ricketts.
Among the Jamaican Government officials who participated in the race were Dr Horace Chang, deputy prime minister; Kamina Johnson Smith, minister of foreign affairs and foreign trade; Fayval Williams, minister of education and youth; Delroy Chuck, minister of justice; and Delroy Williams, mayor of Kingston.
Members of the diplomatic corps and representatives of international organisations also participated and included Olivier Guyonvarch, French ambassador; Jan Hendrik Van Thiel, German ambassador; Nick Perry, US ambassador; Juan José González Mijares, Mexican ambassador; Rungsang Masakui, Indian ambassador; Lilia Burunciuc, World Bank Caribbean director; and Denise Antonio, UNDP resident representative.
Main sponsors were St Mary's, Mountain Peak, Recycling Partners, Cal's Manufacturing, King Alarm, Running Events Jamaica, Kingston Creative, TVJ, Radio Jamaica, HITZ, Jamaica Observer, The Best Dressed Chicken, and Catherine's Peak Spring Water.
The European Union Ambassador Marianne Van Steen said: "The inaugural staging of the EU-JA 5K event on Sunday was a resounding success and met our objectives. We were particularly pleased with the participation of the community groups and runners of all ages, which was a symbolic unification in our push against crime and violence."
Race Director Alfred "Frano" Francis said he was pleased with the turnout especially from community groups downtown Kingston, who were sponsored by the European Union.
The inaugural EU-JA 5K met its target of raising funds for a special literacy summer camp at Kingston High School. The summer camp will be organised by the Ministry of Education and Youth (MOEY) and Creative Language-Based Learning, an educational non-profit.
The camp is part of the MOEY-led Inter-Ministerial 34 Schools' Strategy and the broader Citizen Security Plan of the Government of Jamaica, supported by the EU. The strategy was developed to strengthen services specifically in schools located within zones of special operations. These schools have identified literacy as a crucial issue to be addressed to improve academics, safety and security.
- We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper; email addresses will not be published.
- Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.
- We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.
- Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.
- Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: email@example.com.
- If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.