World champs gold medallist Jonielle Smith opens with 60m win in Boston, Akeem Bloomfield second in 400m

By February 06, 2023
Jonielle Smith Jonielle Smith

Jamaican Olympian Jonielle Smith won her 60m season opener at the 2023 Bruce Lehane Scarlet and White Invitational in Boston on Saturday.

The 2019 World Championship sprint-relay gold medalist, who recently celebrated her 27th birthday ran 7.50 in the preliminary round before winning the final in 7.35. The MVP International sprinter held off the fast-finishing Dominique Clarke, who ran 7.38 for second.

Third was Smith’s MVP teammate Kasheika Cameron, who crossed the finish line in 7.58.

It was a welcome return to competition for the 2018 CAC 100m champion who has been plagued by injury over the past two seasons and who ran only three 100m races in 2022 at the Jamaica National Championships in June.

Meanwhile, Michael Campbell also of MVP International won the men’s equivalent in 6.71 as he continues his return from a broken back suffered during a motorvehicle accident in 2017 that claimed the life of his friend Jordon Scott.

Campbell won in a close finish with Ethan Exilhomme, who was timed in 6.73.

Bryan Sosoo was third in 6.85.

In the Men’s 400m, Akeem Bloomfield, who is now a member of the Puma Chase Athletics Training Group after a year at Tumbleweed in Florida, finished second to Wellington Ventura in a tight finish.

Ventura clocked 47.10 to Bloomfield’s 47.11.

Shevioe Reid was third in 47.21.

Leighton Levy

Leighton Levy is a journalist with 28 years’ experience covering crime, entertainment, and sports. He joined the staff at SportsMax.TV as a content editor two years ago and is enjoying the experience of developing sports content and new ideas. At SportsMax.tv he is pursuing his true passion - sports.

Related items

  • World record holder Tigst Assefa out to make history in first London Marathon World record holder Tigst Assefa out to make history in first London Marathon

    World record holder Tigst Assefa hopes to set a new women’s-only best time in the TCS London Marathon on Sunday and believes it will be tougher to win than this year’s Paris Olympics.

    Ethiopian Assefa smashed the world record in September when she finished the Berlin Marathon in two hours, 11 minutes and 53 seconds.

    Next in Assefa’s sights is success in her maiden London Marathon and the women’s-only record, which is 2:17:01 and was set by Kenyan Mary Keitany at the 2017 event.

    “I am very happy to be in London for the first time,” Assefa said via a translator.

    “I did train very well for Berlin and I have trained well for this one. God will show how good I am on Sunday.

    “I have prepared very well for this race and I am sure I can beat the course record here. As I am sure all my competitors here will feel as well.

    “Regardless of whether it is London or Berlin, it will not change my strategy at all.

    “I am here to win.”

    Assefa took part in pre-race press duties on Thursday and was joined at the media centre in St James’ Park by Brigid Kosgei, Ruth Chepngetich and Peres Jepchirchir.

     

    View this post on Instagram

    A post shared by TCS London Marathon (@londonmarathon)

     

    Kosgei of Kenya held the world record until Assefa broke it in September but has won the London Marathon twice.

    All four athletes were asked if victory in Sunday’s 26.2-mile race would be harder than winning the marathon at the Paris Games after London Marathon race director Hugh Brasher suggested that would be the case on Wednesday.

    Only Kosgei felt the Paris Games would be harder with Assefa, Chepngetich and Jepchirchir all in agreement this weekend’s strong field made Sunday’s race the most difficult to win.

    After Kosgei failed to finish last year’s race due to injury, she revealed preparation this time had gone well.

    “I am happy to be here again this year,” Kosgei said. “Last year when I reached here I was not feeling well.

    “I have been preparing well in Kenya and I am ready.”

    Olympic champion Jepchirchir finished third in 2023 and backed a women’s-only record to be set this weekend.

    Jepchirchir added: “On Sunday I know the field is strong and I know it is not easy. We are running with strong ladies.

    “For myself, when I see the field is strong, I see the (course) record on Sunday. Yes, may the best win.”

  • Jamaican sprinter Oblique Seville eager for clash with 100 World Champion Noah Lyles at Racers Grand Prix Jamaican sprinter Oblique Seville eager for clash with 100 World Champion Noah Lyles at Racers Grand Prix

    Jamaican sprinter Oblique Seville is gearing up for an electrifying showdown against world champion Noah Lyles at the upcoming Racers Grand Prix on June 1, setting the stage for a thrilling test of readiness ahead of the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.

    Seville, who finished fourth at the 2023 World Championships in Budapest where Lyles clinched his first 100m world title, is optimistic about his chances this season, having managed to steer clear of injury thus far. Seville's coach, Glen Mills, revealed earlier this year that an injury at a crucial stage last season hindered Seville's performance in Budapest, where he clocked 9.88 seconds, narrowly missing out on a medal.

    Reflecting on his preparation for the upcoming races, Seville expressed confidence in his improved health and training regimen this season. "This year I have taken some drastic steps with regards to my injuries and injury management. I am cautious with what I'm doing so I am healthy at this point, and everything is going well," Seville explained at Tuesday's launch of the Racers Grand Prix at the Jamaica Pegasus in Kingston.

    Seville's recent performances, including a 47.44-second 400m and a 20.17-second 200m, demonstrate his dedication and hard work leading into this pivotal season. "The 47.44 and the 20.17 that I ran show my dedication and hard work, so it is a possibility that I can make it onto the medal podium if things work out as planned," Seville remarked.

     “Last year, I didn’t get to train the way I really wanted to but this year I got to train the way I wanted so everything is working out. I am stronger because I have got more chances training wise to do things I didn’t get the chance to do last year because of some niggles that I had.

    “I had some issues with my back and stuff which caused me not to be able to lift weights as much as I could but I got it sorted out now and I am good.”

    Looking ahead to the Racers Grand Prix, where he will face off against Lyles and training partner Zharnel Hughes, Seville expressed excitement about the opportunity to race against the world's best. "The last time I competed against Lyles was at the World Championship finals, so it's good to run with him before the Olympics to get a feel of what is to come," Seville emphasized.

    The clash between Seville, Lyles, and Hughes at the Racers Grand Prix at the National Stadium in Kingston, promises to be a thrilling preview of what's in store for the Olympic Games in Paris, as Seville aims to secure his first global medal.

  • No Pressure: World 400m champ Watson sets sight on remainder of season with confidence, determination No Pressure: World 400m champ Watson sets sight on remainder of season with confidence, determination

    As the track and field season prepares to hit high gear, the performances of reigning World 400m champion Antonio Watson is among those that will attract some degree of interest, as Jamaican sporting enthusiasts, in particularly, have harboured hopes that he can repeat his gold medal-winning feat at this Summer’s Olympic Games in Paris.

    But amidst the anticipation and scrutiny of track and field fans, who often accept nothing short of excellence, Watson remains unfazed, exuding an aura of calm and confidence that all but indicates his readiness for the tasks ahead.

    In fact, Watson in sharing his outlook for the business end of the season, revealed a mindset rooted in resilience and self-assurance, as he prepares to grace the track for a second time over 400m this year at the sixth edition of the Racers Grand Prix, on June 1.

    “No pressure. I'm not really pressured because I'm just focusing on myself and executing my races to the best of my ability. Yes, the title of World Champion comes with some amount of pressure to perform, but the aim is just to perform at my best,” Watson said during the event's launch at Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, on Tuesday.

     Antonio Watson ease across the line to win the men's 400m B final at the Racers Grand Prix inside the National Stadium on Saturday.

    “I am still trying to gauge my competition form because I haven't run in 400m since my race in February, but I'm feeling good in training, so I'm just excited to go out there and try to ensure that my fans and my friends have a wonderful show,” he added.

    Interestingly, it was at the Racers Grand Prix that Watson broke the 45-second barrier for the first time in his career, and from there, he went on to top a quality World Championships field, with a new personal best 44.13s, in Budapest.

    With that in mind, the 22-year-old has every reason to be confident, especially after proving that he has what it takes to succeed at the highest level. Apart from the pedestrian 46.10s he clocked in February, Watson also had a 200m breeze at the Velocity Fest in March, where he clocked 20.84s.

    “Well, I'm very excited about it. It's my second year competing at Racers Grand Prix, and I enjoyed last year, so I just want to go out there this year again and put on another good show. My training has been good, I’ve been working on a lot of things over the past few weeks, getting them right, so I'm really excited to just go out there and perform, as the aim for this season is to lower my personal best, obviously, and also get more silverware this season,” he declared.

    Despite his achievements, over the past year, Watson remains humble and grounded, never allowing room for complacency or even to underestimate his opponents. This, as he won’t be facing a field of the World Championships or Olympic Games quality, but still views other competitors as equals.

    Along with Watson, the 400m field for the Racers Grand Prix includes, American Champion Allison, Nigerian NCAA champion Emmanuel Bamidele, Demish Gaye, Zandrion Barnes and Javon Francis.

    “For me, everyone is a threat because just like how I popped up last year, anyone can come out here and pop up this year. So I'm not downgrading anyone, these are good athletes Champion Allison is a sub-44 man, so too is Bamidele from Nigeria.

    “So it's a good field and I am looking forward to competing against them. It's going to be a big race and one that sets me up for trials and possibly the Olympics after. So it's going to be a very important race for me and I am just trying to go out there, perform to my best and hopefully get a great time,” Watson shared.

    While the rigors of training under celebrated coach Glen Mills at Racers Track Club can sometimes be overwhelming, Watson is unflinching in his desire to achieve excellence and, as such, leaves no stone unturned, as he braces for the challenges to come in the quest for greatness.

    “For me, hearing from coach daily really boosts me. He always has encouraging words and when I'm not performing or training to my best, he always points it out. So, for me it's good and also can be stressful at times, but coach says I'm on the right path, so I'm just sticking to the path that I am on, and hopefully I can better it,” Watson reasoned.

    “So, once I turn up at training, I'm ready to train, sometimes, it's hard to be focused for a million and one reasons, but as a professional, you have to know that it is time for you to be focused. So, I always try to stay locked in, and I have a good team around me that keeps me focused and ensures that I'm ready,” he ended.

     

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.