Wolmer’s Girls: Student athletes
By Dania Bogle
Wolmer’s Girls School has been the top corporate area girls’ school at the annual Inter-Secondary School Sports Association (ISSA) Boys & Girls Athletic Championships for the last five seasons and team coach Michael Carr is aiming to keep things that way.
However, Carr is also very proud of the fact that his team comprises ‘student/athletes’ who do well not only on the track, but in the classroom as well.
“It’s not only about track and field,” he told MilesplitJa
“(That) is part I have a job to prepare these girls in life and to do so you have to be rounded. Qualified where you can pick choose and refuse universities at the end of the day. Education is the key.”
It’s a formula that seems to be working. The current Class Two girls 100m champion, Jonielle Smith and silver medallist Shauna Helps, both earned eight subjects with distinction and credits at the Caribbean Examinations level last August.
In addition, two other team members earned nine subjects with distinction while all members of the team who sat external exams earned all eight or more subjects which they took with distinction and credits.
This season, Smith and Helps will be separated, as the sprint champion, who turns 18 in January, has moved to Class One while Helps, who turns 18 in October, remains in Class Two.
Smith, who has personal bests of 11.58 in the 200m and 23.87 in the 200m, both done at Champs last year, while Helps, who won the event in 2012, has personal bests of 11.50 in the 100m and 24.21 in the 200m.
Smith opened her season with victory at the JC/Purewater Invitational meet in Kingston on January 4 while Helps claimed the Class Two event in a useful 11.7 second hand-time.
Carr says the team isn’t looking back, but forward.
“Whatever happened before that is history. We are thinking about a new start, refocusing, staying free from injuries and this is very difficult to predict in track and field. They have their reputation to protect so I think they are going to compete with pride and passion this year.”
He is also confident of what to expect from his girls again in 2014.
“Whenever they go out they always give 100 per cent so if they do perform to their true potential they could be winners again this year,” he told MilesplitJa.
Carr isn’t making any prediction in terms of points this year although he seems confident that the maroon-and-gold wearing team will again finish in the top ten.
“I respect everyone and I see everyone as a challenge. I don’t think if they reach in the final wherever they place points will come.”