Jamaican schools head to Penn Relays
By Dania Bogle
Twenty-six Jamaican high schools and four colleges will be competing at this month’s 119th Pennsylvania Relay Carnival from April 25-27 at the Franklin Field at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
The colleges include GC Foster College, Knox CC, UTech, and UWI Mona, while the high schools are Alpha Academy, Ardenne, Bellefield, Calabar, Edwin Allen, Excelsior Garvey Maceo, Green Island, Herbert Morrison, Holmwood Tech, Hydel, Jamaica College, Kingston College, Manchester, Mannings, Munro, Old Harbour, St. Andrew Girls, St. Andrew Technical, St. Elizabeth Tech, St. Hugh's, Tacius Golding The Queen’s School, Vere Technical, and Wolmer's Boys.
Among the athletes competing will be several who won medals at the recent Carifta Championships in the Bahamas. Rushelle Burton of St Andrew High School, who won gold medals in the 100m Under-17 hurdles and the Under-17 4x100 metres; Wolmer's Boys' Jaheel Hyde and Kristoff Bryan, who claimed gold in the Under-17 110 hurdles and Under-20 high jump, and Kingston College's Omar McLeod, gold medallist in the Under-20 400m hurdles, and Clive Pullen who won gold in the triple jump Under-20 will be strutting their stuff.
Jamaican telecommunications giant LIME sponsored 18 schools to the tune of $1.8 million dollars towards their expenses this week. The schools received Jus Talk phone cards to help them stay in touch with family and friends while in the city of brotherly love.
Meanwhile, St. Jago’s girl’s team, which will compete in the mile and sprint relays in Philadelphia, is also one of four Jamaican schools which have been invited to this year’s Adidas Classic in the Icahn Stadium on Randall’s Island on May 25. Vere Technical is the other girl’s team while Manchester High School and Munro College’s boys 4x100m and 4x400m relay teams have also been invited.
“We have always been going but last year we had a logistics clash with exams. This year the meet is in May but been so we will still have to send some fourth formers,” team coach Keilando Coburn told MilesplitJa.
“Going to the Penn Relays we always have to go with an open mind. It’s a bit different outside of Jamaica but the objective is to make two championship finals.
A big highlight of the Penn Relays is the USA versus The World events which will highlight Saturday’s programme.
Among the top billed athletes competing in the relays will be Olympic Games 100m champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce.