World Championship 400m hurdles finalist and Jamaican national record holder Roshawn Clarke produced an upset in heat five of the men’s 400m at Saturday’s Camperdown Classic at the National Stadium in Kingston with a win over reigning World 400m champion Antonio Watson.

Swept Track Club’s Clarke, the current World U-20 record holder in the 400m hurdles, started the race in lane five while Racers Track Club’s Watson was in lane four.

It was a contrast in starts to the race for the two with Clarke going out hard over the first 300m and Watson going out in his usual reserved style.

The final 100m saw Clarke, who is still only 19 and doesn’t turn 20 until July, using his 400m hurdles strength to narrowly hold off a fast-finishing Watson.

In what was the first race of the season for both men, Clarke’s winning time was 46.05 while Watson ran 46.10 in second. Terry Thomas of Titans International was third in 46.97.

Watson is looking to build on a 2023 season that saw him run 44.22 to claim his maiden World 400m title in Budapest last August. Clarke also had a fantastic maiden World Championships. He produced a national record and world U-20 record 47.34 in the semi-finals of the 400m hurdles before finishing fourth in the final with a 48.07 effort.

Heat four saw two-time World Championship 100m finalist Oblique Seville of Racers Track Club produce a personal best 47.44 to open his season with a win. Titans International and Antigua & Barbuda’s Darion Skerritt ran a personal best 48.43 in second while Calabar’s Craig Prendergast, also hailing from Antigua & Barbuda, ran 48.49, also a personal best in third.

Heat three was won by Racers Track Club’s Kuron Griffith in a personal best 48.79 ahead of Swept Track Club’s Jalan Bennett (50.29) and Mico University College’s Quentin McLean (50.59).

Racers Track Club had the top three finishers in heat two. Guyana’s Shamar Horatio won in a personal best 49.02 ahead of Jamaican national U-20 100m record holder Bouwahjgie Nkrumie (49.73) and Adrian Taffe (50.27). Both Nkrumie and Taffe ran personal bests.

Elite Performance Track Club’s Waseem Williams ran a personal best 49.71 to win the first heat. Swept Track Club’s Junior Harris was second with a personal best 50.91 while York Castle’s Jerrain Hunter ran a personal best 51.74 in third.

The women’s invitational 400m final was won by Elite Performance’s Kerrica Hill in a personal best 56.26 ahead of Ferncourt’s Alliea Whitter (59.36) and Serena Richard of Legacy Athletics (59.84).

 

 

 The World Athletics Continental Tour Silver event, Racers Grand Prix will host its 2024 staging on Saturday, June 1 at the National Stadium.

Known globally as Jamaica’s foremost track and field meet credited with showcasing many of Jamaica’s most decorated athletes, Racers Grand Prix promises an exhilarating three-hour demonstration of athletic excellence.

As the well-supported meet returns to its pride and place on the sporting calendar for the second year post-pandemic, Racers Grand Prix CEO Devon Blake is prepared to raise the engagement for fans of the sport.

“As usual we will have a star-studded lineup of international and Jamaican athletes. A major focus for this year's meet will be our fan engagement activities. We are working on new ways for attendees to immerse themselves in the Grand Prix experience. We are proud to announce that for the first time this year, fans of track and field will be able to sign up online for free tickets to the meet,” Blake shared

 While deliberations continue to determine the meet lineup for 2024, Blake is keen to highlight the Racers Track Club members to watch at this year’s meet.

 “It's too early to have any confirmed athletes who are not part of Racers Track Club. However, we are expecting exemplary things from Oblique Seville (who leads the new generation of 100m athletes), Antonio Watson (Jamaica's first World Championship gold medallist in over 40 years), and Zharnel Hughes (British 100m and 200m record holder),” Blake added.

 Racers Grand Prix was conceived by Chairman Glen Mills and launched in 2016. Today it stands as a premier Track and Field Meet showcasing top talents from the Racers Track and Field Club, Jamaica and around the world. The event plays a pivotal role in developing Jamaica's athletics and the Racers Track and Field Club.

 Racer’s Grand Prix Organizing Committee Chairman, Glen Mills is particularly excited to facilitate the development of local talent at this year’s meet as a precursor to the Olympics.

“This is an Olympic year and the Racers Grand Prix offers our Jamaican athletes the perfect opportunity to measure themselves against the best in the world in front of their home fans and also assess their progress in preparation for the Olympics,” Glen Mills commented.

Jamaica's 400m world champion, Antonio Watson, is gearing up for the challenge of a lifetime as he sets his sights on the upcoming Olympic Games in Paris. The 22-year-old sprint sensation, who was recently named Jamaica’s Sportsman of the Year 2023, is not resting on his laurels and has outlined an ambitious goal – to dip below the 44-second mark in the 400m.

Watson, a former Petersfield High School star, made history in 2023 by becoming the first Jamaican in four decades to clinch gold in the one-lap sprint at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest. His standout performance included a personal best of 44.13 in the semi-finals, followed by a stunning victory in the final with a time of 44.22. These times solidified his position as the third-fastest Jamaican ever in the 400m, tied with Nathon Allen, and trailing only Rusheen McDonald (43.93) and Akeem Bloomfield (43.94).

As Watson basks in the glory of being named Sportsman of the Year, he remains acutely aware of the challenges awaiting him in Paris. The return of formidable competitors, including the likes of Steven Gardiner, Michael Norman, Wayde van Niekerk, and Kirani James, means the road to Olympic success won't be an easy one.

Watson expressed his clear objective for the Paris Olympics, stating, “My objective is to dip below 44 seconds. So, for me, I'm just trying to stay focused and stay healthy and just work hard.” The young athlete is resolute in his determination to push himself to new limits in pursuit of Olympic glory.

Reflecting on his unexpected success at the World Championships in 2023, Watson admitted that his initial goal was simply to make the finals. However, after an impressive opening round, he saw an opportunity and decided to seize the moment. 

“After the first round, I said anything is possible because any card can play. So I just I just stay focused.”

Winning his first Athlete of the Year award adds to the motivation for Watson, who emphasized the significance of his parents witnessing the achievement.

“It is a big moment and I am glad my parents were here to witness it so it will keep me motivated and give me the strength to push forward.”

 

 

World champions Shericka Jackson and Antonio Watson were crowned Jamaica’s Sportswoman and Sportsman of the year, respectively, at the 2023 RJRGLEANER Sports Foundation National Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year Awards ceremony at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel on Friday.

Jackson claimed the award for the first time after a phenomenal 2023 season which saw her successfully defend her World 200m title with a personal best 21.41, the second fastest time ever, in Budapest in August.

In addition to her 200m title, Jackson also ran 10.72 for 100m silver. She ended her season with the sprint double at the Diamond League Final in Eugene with times of 10.70 and 21.57, respectively, in September.

The 29-year-old also achieved a new personal best in the 100m with 10.65, the fifth fastest time ever, to defend her National title in July.

Antonio Watson shocked the world to become the first Jamaican man in 40 years to win 400m gold at the World Championships.

After running a massive personal best 44.14 in the semi-finals, the 22-year-old produced 44.22 to take gold in the final. Watson also ran 44.54 for second at the National Championships in July.

Watson also took home the people’s choice award for his gold medal winning performance.

Danielle Williams was named runner-up for Sportswoman of the Year while Hansle Parchment was runner-up for Sportsman of the Year.

Williams, like Watson, shocked the world in Budapest by claiming her second 100m hurdles World title, the other coming all the way back in 2015.

Parchment, the reigning Olympic champion, claimed his second World Championship silver medal with a 13.07 effort in Budapest. He followed that up in September with a new personal best 12.93 to win at the Diamond League Final in Eugene.

The recipient of the 2023 Icon Award was 400m hurdles Olympic and World champion Deon Hemmings-McCatty while West Indies Under-19 batsman Jordan Johnson was named the winner of the VM Group Y.O.U.T.H award.

Some other athletes receiving awards for their individual sports included CAC Games bronze medallist Tahlia Richardson for badminton, Ricardo “Big 12” Brown for boxing, Sherea Clarke and Wayne McCalla for bodybuilding, West Indies batter Rashada Williams for cricket and Sara Misir and Fraser McConnell for motorsport.

Arguably Jamaica’s two most successful sports teams, the Sunshine Girls and the Reggae Girls, were given special awards for their performances in 2023.

The Reggae Girls were rewarded for their historic performance at the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand from July 20-August 20.

They became the first Caribbean team ever, male or female, to advance to the Round of 16 at a FIFA World Cup.

The Sunshine Girls also had a historically good year with a gold medal at the CAC Games held in El Salvador from June 25-29 and bronze at the Netball World Cup held from July 28-August 6 in South Africa.

That World Cup also saw the Jamaicans get their first ever World Cup win over world number one and eventual champions, Australia.

Olympic 400m champion Steven Gardiner is back to full health and is determined to defend his title in Paris, France next year.

In one of the more heartbreaking moments of the 2023 World Athletics Championships, the Bahamian star, who won the 400m title in Doha in 2019 and on the rebound from an injury that kept him out of the championships in Oregon in 2022, suffered an injury in his semi-final heat, tragically ending his campaign in Budapest.

Running out lane six in the last of three semi-finals, Gardiner was in complete control when he suddenly collapsed and fell to the track. He later revealed he had suffered a grade-one sprain of the tendon extending into the knee of the right posterior thigh.

His injury opened the door for Jamaica’s Antonio Watson, who advanced to the final with the fastest time of 44.13, to win Jamaica’s first gold medal in the event in 40 years.

However, in an interview with Bahamian media platform Eyewitness News, the soft-spoken Gardiner expressed confidence about his coming campaign to win a second Olympic gold medal.

“I’m back 100 per cent. Between my doctors in Germany and my coach in the US, we all are on one accord to take it slowly at the beginning of the season and then we’ll be ready for Paris 2024,” he said.

Gardiner revealed that there is only one objective for the coming season.

“The gold medal is the main goal. You know, to bring the medal home to Bahamas once more and also to defend the title that I conquered in 2021, so I just want to do it all again.”

In a tradition spanning nine years, the MVP Track & Field Club is once again making a significant impact on Jamaica's budding athletic talents through its Island-wide Grassroots Athletics Training Camps. The club has extended invitations to secondary schools across the nation, urging them to nominate student-athletes aged 12 to 18 for participation in one of the three Advanced Level Training Camps. These camps are set to take place in each of Jamaica's counties throughout the month of November.

MVP President, Bruce James, expressed his delight at the overwhelming response, saying, "Over 100 schools, from all 14 Parishes in Jamaica have been invited, and we have almost exceeded the targeted number of participants."

Head Coach of the MVP Track & Field Club, Paul Francis, emphasized the importance of sharing their knowledge and training methods following their exceptional results in Budapest at the 2023 World Athletics Championships. He recalled, "A highlight in Budapest was when a participant in our 2016 MVP Grassroots Training Camps won Gold in the 400m. This athlete is Antonio Watson."

The journey of nurturing young talent begins with the Cornwall Advanced Level Training Camp, scheduled for Saturday, November 11th at the Montego Bay Sports Complex in St. James. The Middlesex Advanced Level Training Camp will follow on Saturday, November 18th, to be hosted at the GC Foster College in St. Catherine. The third and final Advanced Level Training Camp, dedicated to Surrey, will be conducted within the National Stadium, Kingston, on Saturday, November 25th, 2023.

These training camps will be supervised by a team of distinguished Jamaican coaches, led by MVP Head Coach Paul Francis, all of whom boast extensive international experience. The young athletes, numbering over 120 per training camp, will be guided through six track and field disciplines, including Hurdling, Sprinting, Throwing, Jumping, Distance Running, and Relays. It's worth noting that MVP Track & Field Club athletes frequently make appearances at these camps to interact with the aspiring young talents.

The training experience is further enriched as PUMA, one of the world's largest sports apparel companies, provides the athletes with top-quality gear. WATA and Powerade ensure that the young athletes remain well-hydrated, while NCB and the NCB Foundation offer financial literacy solutions. Best Dressed Chicken lends support for the nutritional needs of the student athletes, and the Sports Development Foundation continues its dedication to high-quality development programs throughout Jamaica. Digicel serves as the telecommunications partner for these camps.

The all-day training camps commence at 8:30 am and are strictly by invitation only, emphasizing the importance of fostering the future stars of Jamaican athletics.

 

 

 

As the curtains fell on the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary, the global track and field community bore witness to an unforgettable spectacle of talent, resilience, and passion. For nine consecutive days, athletes from around the world competed under sweltering heat in their pursuit of excellence.

Among these remarkable competitors, it was the athletes from the Caribbean who stood out, earning well-deserved praise from Keith Joseph, President of the Caribbean Association of National Olympic Committees (CANOC).

In a message released on Friday morning, Joseph expressed his admiration for the outstanding performances of Caribbean athletes, acknowledging their dedication to representing their countries and the region on the world stage.

"The excitement of the athletics competition, once started, never abated," Joseph remarked. "The final event, the women's 4 x 400m relay, saw Jamaica's potential hold on the gold medal slip away, literally in the final strides, much to our collective CANOC chagrin. But this did not detract from the fact that on yet another occasion in the wide and wonderfully exciting world of track and field competition, Jamaica continued to carry the Caribbean cause on its back."

Joseph went on to highlight several standout performances that left an indelible mark on the championships. Shericka Jackson's remarkable victory in the 200m solidified her status as a global star in the sport. Antonio Watson's stunning triumph in the 400m, despite his status as an U23 athlete, showcased the immense potential of the region's younger talents. Danielle Williams added another gold medal to Jamaica's tally with her impressive win in the 100m hurdles.

Joseph also highlighted Hansle Parchment and Wayne Pinnock secured silver medals in the 110m hurdles and long jump, respectively. The women's 4 x 100m and 4 x 400m relay teams also earned silver for Jamaica, while Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce and Rushell Clayton contributed bronze medals to the nation's haul in the 100m and 400m hurdles events.

The president’s praise also extended beyond Jamaica in acknowledging, the Dominican Republic's Marileidy Paulino domination of the women's 400m, while the British Virgin Islands' Kyron McMaster made a triumphant return to form with a silver medal in the 400m hurdles. Barbados' Sada Williams displayed her prowess with a silver in the women's 400m, and Leyanis Hernandez of Cuba secured a bronze in the triple jump.

Cuba continued to make its presence felt in the championships, with Lazaro Martinez and Cristian Urria taking second and third place, respectively, in the men's triple jump. Grenada's Lindon Victor made his mark by earning a bronze in the men's javelin.

Amidst the celebrations, St. Lucia's Julien Alfred emerged as a rising star, placing fifth in the 100m and fourth in the 200m. Dominica's Thea LaFond held her own, finishing fifth in the women's triple jump.

Joseph acknowledged that there were disappointments along the way for some Caribbean athletes, but their spirits remained unbroken. He celebrated the resilience that defines the Caribbean people, inspiring their athletes to give their best, fully aware that they are motivated to go 'beyond possible,' defying every attempt to deter their commitment to success.

 

"The World Athletics Championships are done," Joseph declared. "The performances of our athletes are now indelibly recorded in global athletics history. As CANOC, we stand proud of our athletes, medallists as well as those who missed out. Together, we affirm our commitment to our Caribbean-ness."

With these inspiring performances, Caribbean athletes have once again proven their mettle on the global stage, leaving an enduring legacy of dedication, perseverance, and pride in their Caribbean heritage. Their remarkable achievements continue to inspire and unite the region, setting the stage for even greater success in the future.

 

 

 

 

Amidst the electrifying atmosphere of the 400m finals at the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary, on Thursday, Trinidad and Tobago's Jereem Richards found himself on the sidelines, watching the race unfold rather than participating in the fierce competition.

Richards' journey in the championships had been marred by a debilitating foot injury that forced him to bow out of the semi-finals, dampening his hopes for glory.

On Tuesday, August 22, Richards' campaign took an unexpected turn as he finished fifth in his semi-final heat with a time of 44.77. Incidentally, Jamaica’s Antonio Watson, the eventual gold medallist, won that heat in a lifetime best of 44.13.

For Richards, the disappointment of not being able to deliver for his country weighed heavily, prompting him to share his emotions on social media.

In a heartfelt post on Instagram, Richards expressed his gratitude despite the setback:

"In all things, give thanks and praise to God. Although I exerted maximum effort, it fell short today (Tuesday). These past three weeks have been challenging. During the national championships in the 200m event, I unfortunately suffered a torn plantar fascia and had to make a difficult decision of not participating in the final."

The injury was a blow to Richards, particularly since he values competing for his fans, especially his beloved family and friends, at the national championships. Determined to overcome this hurdle, Richards embarked on a rigorous journey to stay fit and prepared for the World Championships:

"Over the course of two long weeks, I engaged in pool workouts, mat runs, and cycling to maintain my fitness," he said.

Richards extended heartfelt gratitude to the medical professionals who played a pivotal role in his recovery and ability to compete at the World Championships:

"I am grateful for the exceptional medical support system that helped me navigate through this arduous journey. Special thanks to Dr Anyl Gopeesingh, Shaun Kettle, Alban Nicole, Keston Bledman, Lance Brauman, and Jerrica."

Navigating through uncertainty, Richards' determination and resilience shone as he found a way to grace the World Championships despite the challenges:

"Initially uncertain if I would be able to compete at the World Championships, by the grace of God I made it there. I extend my sincere gratitude to everyone who supported and prayed for me. I deeply appreciate your unwavering support. I will strive to continue giving my best to Trinidad and Tobago."

Antonio Watson produced a spirited run to claim his maiden World title in the men’s 400m final at the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Budapest on Thursday.

The 21-year-old, who produced a massive personal best 44.14 in the semi-finals on Tuesday, ran a measured first 300m before producing a magnificent final 100m to blaze past Great Britain’s Matthew Hudson-Smith who was second in 44.31. American Quincy Hall ran a personal best 44.37 to take bronze.

2011 World Champion Kirani James ran 44.52 for fifth while Sean Bailey ran 44.96 for sixth.

Watson’s gold medal is the second in the World Championships by a Jamaican with the first coming 40 years ago when Bert Cameron took gold in Helsinki.

There were mixed fortunes for the Caribbean men in the 400m semi-finals on day four of the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Budapest on Tuesday.

Antonio Watson was first up and set the track ablaze with a massive personal best 44.13 to take semi-final one over the likes of South African world record holder Wayde Van Niekerk and American Vernon Norwood.

Norwood ran a personal best of his own with 44.26 for second while Van Niekerk ran 44.65 in third and Jereem Richards ran 44.76 in fourth.

Van Niekerk made it through to the final as one of the fastest losers while Richards was just beaten out Norway’s Havard Bentdal Ingvaldsen who ran 44.70 in heat two.

Great Britain’s Matthew Hudson Smith won the second semi-final in a personal best, British and European record 44.26 ahead of 2011 World Champion Kirani James who ran 44.58.

Unfortunately, reigning Olympic Champion Steven Gardiner looked set to book his spot in the final before pulling up injured while leading with about 100m to go in the third semi-final.

The race was eventually won by American Quincy Hall in 44.43 while Jamaica’s Sean Bailey also made it through to the final with 44.94.

 

In what was a demonstration of Caribbean excellence and depth of talent Steven Gardiner, the 2019 world champion, 2011 champion Kirani James and Jamaicans Sean Bailey, Antonio Watson and Zandrian Barnes all advanced to the semi-final round of the 400m during Sunday’s opening session on day two of the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary.

Jereem Richards of Trinidad and Tobago and St Lucia’s Michael Joseph also advanced to the next round of competition.

Gardiner, who was unable to defend his title in Eugene, Oregon in 2022, due to injury, indicated that he was ready to claim his second world title, cruising to victory in the opening heat in 44.65. Japan’s Kentaro Sato was the runner-up in the heat in a national record of 44.77. Hungary’s Attila Molnar also set a national record of 44.84 to finish third.

Josephs of St Lucia was fifth in 45.04 and advanced as one of the next sixth fastest after the three automatic qualifiers from each heat.

Wayde van Neikerk, the world record holder, ran 44.57 to win Heat 2 in which Alonzo Russell of the Bahamas was sixth in 46.95. He failed to advance.

Richards, Trinidad and Tobago’s best hope of an individual medal at these championships, eased to a third-place finish in Heat 3 in 45.15 to automatically qualify for the next round. Norways’s Håvard Bentdal Ingvaldsen won the heat in a national record of 44.39 with the USA’s Vernon Norwood trailing in for second place in 44.87.

Grenada’s James, whose coach Harvey Glance died during his final weeks of preparation leading into these championships, won Heat 4 in 44.91. Japan’s Fuga Sato clocked a personal best of 44.97 to finish ahead of Bailey, who finished in 44.98.

Watson comfortably won Heat 5 in 44.77 ahead of the USA’s Quincy Hall, who clocked in at 44.86. Japan’s Yuki Joseph Nakajima was the next automatic qualifier from the heat when he finished third in 45.15.

Barnes was third in the final heat running 45.05 to automatically qualify. His heat was won by Bayapo Ndori of Botswana in 44.72 with Belgium’s Alexander Doom finishing in second place in a personal best 44.92.

You can watch live action from the 2023 World Athletics Championships by downloading the Sportsmax app from the Google Playstore.

 

Roshawn Clarke and Antonio Watson were among a number of Caribbean winners at Friday’s Ed Murphey Classic in Memphis, Tennessee, a meet serving as a final tune-up for a number of athletes before the World Championships beginning August 19 in Budapest.

Clarke, the 19-year-old sensation fresh off a world junior record equaling 47.85 to claim his first national senior title last month, ran 48.52 to take the win at the Wolfe Track & Field Complex.

Nigerian Nathaniel Ezekiel, who took bronze at the NCAA Championships competing for Baylor University, was not far behind Clarke in second with 48.55 while American David Kendziera ran 48.77 for third.

Watson, the 21-year-old who will be competing at his first World Championships in Budapest, took a big scalp in the 400m with 44.69 to win ahead of Grenadian World and Olympic Champion Kirani James who produced 44.92 in second. American Justin Robinson ran 45.09 in third.

Watson finished second behind Sean Bailey at the Jamaican Championships last month in a personal best 44.54.

Moving over to the 100m where Oblique Seville, who finished third at the National Championships, ran 9.98 for second in the Invitational A-race on Friday.

The race was won by 2022 World Championship silver medallist, Marvin Bracy-Williams of the USA, in 9.96 while Christian Coleman, the 2019 World Champion, was third in 10.03.

BVI’s Rikkoi Brathwaite and Guyana’s Emmanuel Archibald were both top three finishers in the Invitational B-race. Brathwaite ran a personal best 10.09 for second while Archibald ran 10.14, also a personal best, in third. Liberia’s Emmanuel Matadi ran 10.00 to take the win.

Jamaica’s Ashanti Moore and Natalliah Whyte ran 11.18 and 11.26 for first and third, respectively, in the Women’s Invitational B-race. The USA’s Maia McCoy ran 11.24 for second.

Guyana’s Jasmine Abrams ran 11.41 for second in the Women’s Open 100m behind the USA’s Candace Hill (11.29). Kristina Knott of the Philippines was third in 11.47.

Racers Track Club’s Michael Stephens ran 10.28 for second in the Men’s equivalent won by the USA’s Ameer Webb in 10.17. Demarius Smith ran 10.31 in third.

Two-time national champion, Andrew Hudson, ran 20.51 for third in the Men’s Pro 200m. Olympic Champion, Andre DeGrasse, ran 20.19 for a comfortable win ahead of the USA’s Kyree King (20.45).

Jamaica’s Natalliah Whyte ran 22.76 to win the Women’s Open 200m ahead of American Talitha Diggs (22.83) and Nigeria’s Favour Ofili (22.94).

In the Women’s Pro 800m, St. Vincent & the Grenadines’ Shafiqua Maloney ran a personal best 1:59.94, her first time under two minutes, for second behind the USA’s Addy Wiley (1:59.00). Uganda’s Susan Aneno was third in 1:59.95.

The Men’s Pro 800m saw Jamaican national champion, Rajay Hamilton, run 1:46.72 for second behind Kenya’s Festus Lagat (1:46.72). American Abe Alvarado ran 1:46.82 in third.

Dejour Russell ran 13.47 for second in the Men’s Open 110m hurdles. The race was won by the USA’s Michael Dickson in 13.37 while his countryman Dylan Beard ran 13.60 in third.

In the field, Chanice Porter produced 6.67m to take the win in the Women’s long jump ahead of USA’s Tiffany Flynn (6.46m) and Nigeria’s Ruth Usoro (6.42m).

Newly crowned Jamaican champion and national record holder, Rajindra Campbell, threw 21.59m for third in the Men’s shot put behind the American pair of Joe Kovacs (21.72m) and Tripp Piperi (21.67m).

Bermuda’s Jah-Nhai Perinchief produced 16.85m for second in the Men’s triple jump behind American Donald Scott (16.94m). Another American, Chris Bernard, jumped 16.77m for third.

Newly minted men’s 100m champion Rohan Watson and defending world champions Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce and Shericka Jackson headline a powerful Jamaican team named Wednesday to represent the country at the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary.

Watson, the surprise winner of the men’s 100m will campaign alongside Ryiem Forde and 2022 World Championship finalist Oblique Seville. Ackeem Blake who just missed out on the top three spots in the 100m has been listed as an alternate but he will be a member of the 4x100m squad that will also include Tyquendo Tracey and Michael Campbell.

Fraser-Pryce will be going for her sixth world title with Shericka Jackson, the reigning national champion in both 100m and 200m, campaigning alongside her. Also down to contest the 100m is Sashalee Forbes and Natasha Morrison.

Briana Williams and Elaine Thompson-Herah have been selected as members of the 4x100m relay team.

Andrew Hudson and Rasheed Dwyer will contest the men’s 200m while Jackson, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Natalliah Whyte and Kevona Davis will take on the 200m. Sashalee Forbes has been named as an alternate for the 200m, presumably on the likelihood that Fraser-Pryce will not go in the half-lap sprint.

The Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) put to rest the likelihood of Rusheen McDonald, who is the fastest Jamaican in the world this year over 400m, contesting the one-lap sprint. McDonald, who has run 44.03 this year, the third fastest time ever run over 400m by a Jamaican man, failed to show up for the semi-finals of the national championships.

Zandrian Barnes has been given the nod, who failed to finish in the top three at the national championships in early July, but has met the qualifying entry standard of 45.00. He will contest the 400m along with national champion Sean Bailey and runner-up Antonio Watson.

Jevaughn Powell, Malik James-King and Demish Gaye will make up the 4x400m relay squad.

Nickisha Price, Candice McLeod and Charokee Young will compete in the 400m for women with Joanne Reid named as an alternate. Janieve Russell, Rhonda Whyte and Shian Salmon will make up the 4x400m relay squad.

Reid, meanwhile, will contest the 4x400m Mixed Relay along with Stacy-Ann Williams, Rusheen McDonald and D’Andre Anderson.

Navasky Anderson, who dramatically met the entry standard of 1:44.70 on the final day for qualification on Sunday, is only male 800m runner named on the team while Natoya Goule and Adelle Tracey will take on the women’s event. Tracey will also compete in the 1500m.

An area of great strength for Jamaica is the sprint hurdles. World leader Rasheed Broadbell, the 2022 Commonwealth Games champion, will lead Jamaica’s hunt for medals along with Olympic champion Hansle Parchment and the fast-rising Orlando Bennett. Tyler Mason has been named as an alternate.

 Olympic bronze medallist Megan Tapper will lead the charge for the Jamaican women in the 100m hurdles alongside NCAA champion Ackera Nugent, who is making her debut on the senior team, and 2015 World Champion Danielle Williams, who is also the 2019 bronze medallist.

Amoi Brown is selected as the alternate.

Newly crowned senior national champion and World U20 record holder Roshawn Clarke will take on the world’s best in the 400m hurdles along with Jaheel Hyde and Assinie Wilson while Russell, Andrenette Knight and Rushell Clayton, the 2019 bronze medallist, will go in the women’s race.

Salmon is the alternate.

Romaine Beckford is to represent the black, gold and green in the high jump for men with Lamara Distin and Kimberly Williamson set to take on the women’s event.

The impressive teenager Jaydon Hibbert, the world leader in the triple jump, will try to add world title to his World U20, Carifta, NCAA Indoor and Outdoor titles. Two-time World championship silver medalist Shanieka Ricketts will go for a third medal in the women’s event and will be accompanied by NCAA silver medallist Ackelia Smith and Kimberly Williams.

Jamaica’s strength in the field events is further bolstered by the selection of Carey McLeod, Wayne Pinnock and the 2019 World Champion Tajay Gayle for the long jump while Tissana Hickling and Smith will contest the event among the women.

Newly crowned national record holder Rajindra Campbell and Danniel Thomas-Dodd will throw the shot put in their respective events.

Fedrick Dacres, the 2019 silver medalist, national champion Traves Smith and NCAA silver medallist will throw the discus in Budapest with Samantha Hall set to take on the women’s event. Last but certainly not least is the impressive Nyoka Clunis who will throw the hammer at the prestigious event where the world’s best athletes will congregate on August 19, 2023.

 

After changing coaches in the off season, switching from Ato Boldon in Miramar Florida to Titans International Track Club in Kingston, Briana Williams struggled for form this season. Acclimatizing to a new programmes and battling injuries, the Olympic relay gold medallist has been underwhelming for much of the current season.

With that in mind, she would have been pleased with her performance at the JAAA Budapest Quest Meet at the National Stadium in Kingston on Saturday night. The 21-year-old Williams uncorked a season-best 11.04 to emerge the victor in the 100m that was run over seven sections.

The time represented a significant drop from her previous best of 11.21 run on June 10 at the same venue. Second overall was Kemba Nelson, who clocked 11.18 while Remona Burchell was third fastest with a time of 11.20.

The Men’s 100m was run over an exhausting 14 sections but in the end Zharnel Hughes produced a strong finish to win his section in 10.00 ahead of the in-form Ackeem Blake, who was timed in 10.07. Promising youngster, De’ Andre Daley clocked a quick 10.08 to be third overall.

Stacey-Ann Williams was the quickest in the 400m winning her section of four in 51.08 with Tovea Jenkins second overall in 52.15. Two years ago, Candice McLeod was on fire running a number of sub-50-second times including a personal best of 49.51 to finish fourth in the 2020 Olympic finals.

Things have not been the same this season. Seemingly struggling to regain the form from 2021, McLeod once again came up short finishing third in 52.66.

Rasheed Dwyer was the quickest in the 200m with 20.57 with Antonio Watson second with 20.63. Bryan Levell was third best in 20.71.

Sashalee Forbes won the women’s event in 23.25 over Jodean Williams (23.75) and Ashley Williams 24.12.

Malik James-King ran 49.67 in the 400m hurdles while Lushane Wilson and Christoff Bryan both cleared 2.20m in the high jump with Wilson being better on the countback to take victory.

Despite dipping below the 45-second barrier for the first time in his career, Antonio Watson remains undecided about which event he will attempt at the upcoming National Trials in his effort to make Jamaica's team to the World Athletics Championships later this year.

In fact, Watson pointed out that the breath-taking performance at the Racers Grand Prix on Saturday, where he stopped the clock in a massive personal best of 44.75s to win the men’s 400 metres ‘B’ final, indicates one of two things –either he will be sticking with the one-lap event or is gradually rounding into form to produce something special in the 200m.

The former Petersfield High standout, whose previous 400m best was 45.78s, has already placed his 200m personal best of 20.52s, clocked almost three years ago, on notice with a season's best of 20.73s achieved in March. 

"Time will tell. I am still young, and I still have a lot to learn in both events, so I am just working to be a better athlete," Watson said in a post-race interview at the National Stadium.

"People always say the one lap is my strong suit but I still have love for the 200m, so I am undecided at the moment. However, this 44.7 could mean one of two things, either I will be sticking to the 400m or just getting better for the 200m," he added.

The 21-year-old who is currently training at Racers Track Club, under the tutelage of decorated coach Glen Mills, says he has been training hard this season to deliver something special at the Racers Grand Prix, so it came as no surprise that a massive lifetime best was the end result. 

He crossed the line ahead of Roshawn Clarke of Swept Track Club, who also clocked a lifetime best of 45.24s, while Assinie Wilson of Titans International Track Club also produced a PB of 45.51s for third.

Watson is one of only three Jamaican males to have dipped below the 45-second barrier so far this season.

Sean Bailey at 44.43s, which is the sixth fastest time so far this year, heads the pack with Zandrion Barnes, who also clocked a big personal best of 44.90s at the Racers Grand Prix, being the other.

"Coach told me that the field is good so I should just do what I have been doing throughout training and the time will come. The execution was properly done in my eyes, I just went out there and did what coach told me to.

"It's a great feeling to know that I am now among the top Jamaican athletes this year, so I just want to keep doing my thing," Watson noted.

Given his renewed mindset and obvious maturity, there is no denying that Watson, a former World Youth 400m champion and Youth Olympic 200m silver medallist, possesses enough ability to make the World Championships cut, regardless of which event he chooses.

"Time has changed and I have grown, I've been working hard, and I have been on a high from the season started, so it’s just about staying motivated as I go forward," he shared.

Still, execution on the day will determine whether or not he makes it to Budapest, Hungary for the August 19-27 World Championships and Watson is very much aware of that.

"National Trials is a part of the plan, so I just have to keep working and come out, match up to the field and do my best on the day. Time will tell (which event I will do or the end result) so I will just keep going one day at a time," Watson ended.

 

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