One of Jamaica's premier hurdlers, Rasheed Broadbell, is set to electrify the track once again as he competes on home soil at the highly anticipated Racers Grand Prix scheduled for Saturday.

Broadbell, whose exceptional performances have made waves on the international stage, is returning with renewed vigour and determination following his spectacular victory at the Commonwealth Games. That triumph at the Commonwealth Games marked a significant milestone in his career, as the gold medal in the 110m hurdles not only demonstrated his exceptional talent, but also cemented his status as one of the leading hurdlers in the world.

That victory fuelled his ambitions and set the stage for a promising season ahead. Broadbell revealed that he has been undergoing an intensive training regimen in preparation for his season opener at the Racers Grand Prix.

“Every year my season opener surprises me. I may not know what to expect. It's the first race of the season and the first race since I fell at the world championships so for me I’m just trying to get in race rhythm and execute what I have been practising at training. Preparations have been going great and I pray it remains that way," he said.

The 23-year-old, who is no doubt targeting a spot on Jamaica's team to this summer's Paris Olympic Games, will be up against compatriot and reigning Olympic champion Hansle Parchment, as well as American standout Trey Cunningham and rising star Tyler Mason in what is expected to be one of a several explosive events at the National Stadium.

“It has been a roller coaster journey thus far; grateful for every part of it, most of all I just give God the thanks for bringing me through every bit of it," Broadbell shared.

“My preparation for the Grand Prix is just a part of the bigger preparation which is the Olympics and to get myself into race shape for the upcoming Olympic trials also my mindset towards this competition is to just get out there, execute, finish healthy and give some excitement to the home crowd," he added.

As Broadbell gears up for the Racers Grand Prix, the nation is eager to witness one of their own in action. Broadbell's presence at the Racers Grand Prix promises to be among the highlights of the night, as he is poised to deliver unforgettable moments and inspire the next generation of Jamaican hurdlers.

The event is set to begin at 6:00pm.

Tickets are available for purchase online at  racersgrandprix.com and mysticonlinetix.com, while physical tickets are available at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel.

Scores of fans anticipating this year’s staging of the Grenada Invitational were surely left disappointed after the organizing committee announced the cancellation of the meet.

The decision to cancel the 2024 Grenada Invitational and retire the brand was made at a Board of Directors meeting on Monday, May 27.

The driving force behind the decision, as put by the organizers in a statement, were significant socio-economic challenges.

The Grenada Invitational, known for showcasing world-class athletes such as Justin Gatlin, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, and Kirani James, has been a highlight for track and field enthusiasts since its inception in 2017.

The event successfully ran for three consecutive years from 2017-19, bringing global attention to Grenada’s athletic prowess.

This year’s event, which was officially launched on May 16 at the Radisson Grenada Beach Resort in St. George’s, was set to feature prominent athletes including 2011 World champion Kirani James, two-time double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah, 2022 Commonwealth 110m hurdles gold medallist Rasheed Broadbell, and 100m hurdles Olympic bronze medallist Megan Tapper.

They were among over 100 athletes set to participate in the international segment that promised high-quality competition.

Grenadian stars Anderson Peters and Lindon Victor, both qualified for Paris 2024, were also booked for the event, making the cancellation even more disappointing for local fans.

However, efforts to revive the event post-COVID-19 have faced numerous hurdles. The local and regional economic environment has made securing the necessary sponsorship and support exceedingly difficult.

“Despite the best efforts of the Board of Directors and the Local Organising Team of the Grenada Invitational, the synergy, the enthusiasm, the energy, and the commitment to produce a once-in-a-generation event did not materialize,” the organizers stated.

The statement continued, “With time running out, the Board of Directors of the Grenada Invitational took the painful decision at a meeting late Monday May 27 to cancel the 2024 Grenada Invitational, as well as round up, for good, the franchise and brand that is Grenada Invitational.”

“We are extremely pleased that we were able to bring to Grenada quality, world class athletic competition. We would like to commend and extend a hearty thank you to all who contributed, in one way or the other, to the 2017, 2018 and 2019 editions of the Grenada Invitational.”

Organizers then encouraged Grenadians to look back at the previous editions with pride while singling out Grenadian athletes such as Kirani James, Anderson Peters and Lindon Victor as inspirations behind the meet.

 

 

Bahamian Steven Gardiner is among three individual men’s Olympic sprint champions set to compete at the Golden Spike, a World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting in Ostrava on Tuesday.

Italy’s Marcell Jacobs and Canada’s Andre De Grasse, the Olympic gold medallists over 100m and 200m respectively, will clash over the shorter distance, then De Grasse will double up by contesting his specialist event.

Gardiner, meanwhile, will take on world indoor champion Alexander Doom over one lap of the track.

The Bahamian, who has a season’s best of 44.45, could be pushed by the Belgian, who won in Marrakesh last week with a lifetime best of 44.51.

Not including the few races where he has pulled up injured, Gardiner has been undefeated over 400m since the 2017 World Championships.

Elsewhere, Jacobs has had just two individual outings this year, the latest being a 10.07 season’s best to win in Rome last weekend.

That makes the Italian the fastest of the Ostrava field this year on season’s bests, though he’s also one of four men in the line-up with a sub-10-second PB.

De Grasse, meanwhile, has a best this year of 10.11 and recently finished second at the Diamond League meeting in Marrakesh.

Britain’s Reece Prescod, who set his PB of 9.93 in Ostrava when winning in the Czech city two years ago, will be one to watch, as will Jamaica’s Ryiem Forde.

Later in the evening, De Grasse will take on Jamaica’s Andrew Hudson and Britain's Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake in the 200m.

In the men’s javelin, home favourite Jakub Vadlejch will take on European champion Julian Weber and two-time world champion Anderson Peters.

Four-time global medallist Vadlejch recently won in Doha with 88.38m, which puts him just one centimeter ahead of Weber on this year’s world list. Peters is close behind with a best of 86.62m.

 

Two-time Olympic sprint double champion Elaine Thompson-Herah had a far from ideal start to her 2024 season at the Prefontaine Classic at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon on Saturday.

The 31-year-old lined up in the 100m at the fifth meet on this season’s Diamond League calendar and had a race to forget, running 11.30 for a ninth-place finish as hometown hero Sha’Carri Richardson sped away to a season’s best 10.83 for victory.

“Definitely not what I expected today but grateful,” Thompson-Herah said after the race on Instagram.

“Journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step,” she added.

Thompson-Herah, who is now being coached by Reynaldo Walcott at Elite Performance Track Club, is looking to rediscover the form that led her to Olympic glory in 2016 and 2021.

She endured an injury-riddled 2023 season that saw her fail to make the team for any individual event at the World Championships in Budapest. She did leave those championships with a silver medal, however, as part of the 4x100m quartet.

Thompson-Herah had much better returns in the second half of the 2023 season.

She ran times of 10.92 and 10.84 on September 4 and 8 to win at the Gala dei Castelli and the Brussels Diamond League, respectively, before closing out her season with 10.79 for third at the Prefontaine Classic on September 16.

 

 

St Lucia’s sprint sensation, Julien Alfred, has her sights set on refining her technique as she prepares for the upcoming Olympics this summer. Speaking post-race following her second-place finish in the women’s 100m at the Prefontaine Classic Diamond League meeting on Saturday, Alfred outlined her areas of focus.

Alfred clocked 10.93 seconds in the race, trailing American Sha’Carri Richardson, who won with a world-leading 10.83 seconds. Alfred’s training partner, Dina Asher-Smith, secured third place with a time of 10.98 seconds.

Reflecting on her performance, the World Indoor 60m champion expressed gratitude and acknowledged the need for improvement. “I’ll take it. I have to give God thanks, nevertheless, that I finished healthy. I did want the win, but I’ll take second for now,” she said.

Discussing her race strategy, Alfred noted, “I think I got out well. My finish, I think I sort of panicked a little at the end, panicked a little and fighting. I have to work on my ending.”

Alfred highlighted her progress over time, emphasizing a shift in focus towards better execution. “My strides are wider, I am not as choppy. Right now, I am just focusing on execution. I think before I would go out and just compete, but now it’s just focusing on execution and doing my best to prepare for the Olympics.”

When asked about what she intends to focus on with Coach Eldrick Floreal, Alfred pinpointed the final segment of her race as a key area for improvement. “The last part of my race. It has always been a struggle of mine where I can really stay upright in the last part of my race but it’s about going back to the drawing board and trying to stay upright the last 40/30m.”

Julien Alfred’s focus on refining her race finish and execution signals her commitment to achieving peak performance as she prepares for the Olympics. With her impressive second-place finish at the Prefontaine Classic, Alfred has demonstrated her potential to compete at the highest level and her readiness to take on the world’s best this summer.

Nickisha Pryce, the senior sprinter from the University of Arkansas, once again broke the 50-second barrier in the 400m, securing her place at the NCAA Division One Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Pryce clocked 49.93 seconds at the NCAA West Regionals on Saturday, ensuring her spot at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon, from June 5-8.

Pryce, who recently ran an impressive 49.32 to become the second fastest Jamaican woman over 400m, continued to showcase her dominance in the event. Pryce was also a member of the Razorback 4x400m relay team that established a new championship record of 3:21.92 that also sees the team advancing to the finals in June.

Among the men, Shaemar Uter of Texas Tech also secured his place at the national championships with a solid time of 45.78 in the 400m.

In the sprints, Dejanea Oakley from the University of Texas at Austin ran 22.32 in the 200m to advance to the nationals. Her Texas teammate, Ackelia Smith, excelled in the triple jump with a 14.31m effort, ensuring her qualification.

Nebraska’s Rhianna Phipps joined the list of qualifiers in the triple jump, reaching 13.67m to secure her spot in the finals. Her performance reflects the depth of talent among Jamaican athletes in the field events.

In the 110m hurdles, Jerome Campbell of Northern Colorado ran an impressive 13.30 to book his place at the national championships. He will be joined by the 2023 NCAA champion, Phillip Lemonious, who qualified with a time of 13.43, adding to the formidable Jamaican contingent in the hurdles.

Texas A&M’s Abigail Martin also secured her place at the nationals in the women’s discus, throwing 56.11m to qualify.

Jamaica’s Brianna Lyston spearheaded an impressive contingent of Caribbean athletes into the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships following stellar performances at the NCAA East Regionals on Saturday.

Lyston, a sophomore at Louisiana State University, marked her 20th birthday on Friday with a standout performance, winning her 100m heat in a swift 10.99 seconds. She continued her impressive form by qualifying for the 200m with a time of 22.82 in her heat, securing her place at the national championships.

Joining Lyston is fellow Jamaican Shenese Walker from Florida State University, who clocked a personal best of 11.09 to finish third in the same 100m heat.

Antigua's Joella Lloyd also shone brightly, advancing to the national championships by finishing third in her 100m heat with a time of 11.06. Lloyd's qualification highlights the growing presence of Caribbean athletes in top-tier collegiate track and field competitions.

Clemson University’s Oneka Wilson delivered a personal best of 12.79 to win her 100m hurdles heat, showcasing her exceptional hurdling skills and securing her spot in the national championships.

Additionally, Onieka McAnuff of the University of Kentucky set a lifetime best of 51.70 in the 400m to qualify for nationals, demonstrating remarkable endurance and speed.

In the field events, Roschell Clayton of Villanova cleared 1.84 meters in the high jump, earning her place at the nationals with a strong performance.

These athletes will now compete at the NCAA Division I Outdoor National Track and Field Championships, set to be held at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon, from June 5-8, 2024. Their outstanding performances at the NCAA East Regionals highlight the Caribbean's rich track and field legacy and promise thrilling competition at the national championships.

 

The much-anticipated season openers for St Lucia’s Julien Alfred and Jamaica’s Elaine Thompson-Herah, turned in contrasting results as both were left in the wake of American Sha’Carri Richardson at the end of the women’s 100m at the Diamond League Prefontaine Classics in Eugene, Oregon on Saturday.

Given the quality nature of the field, the event was expected to prove a close affair, but no real clash materialized as Richardson, the reigning World champion, opened her 100m account in impressive fashion with a brisk 10.83 seconds.

Alfred, the World Indoor 60m champion, placed second in 10.93s as she utilised her quick start to good effect and led for most of the way, before being caught by Richardson, while Great Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith (10.98s), who was also opening her account in the event, placed third.

Meanwhile, Thompson-Herah, the double Olympic champion, is still yet to rekindle her outstanding form of old, as she got up well from lane four, but quickly faded to the back of the field in 11.30s.

American Christian Coleman also won the men’s 100m in a season’s best 9.95s, with runner-up Ferdinand Omanyala (9.98s), also clocking a season’s best. Another American Brandon Hicklin (10.08s) was third. Jamaica’s Ackeem Blake (10.12s) and Sandrey Davison with a personal best 10.13s, were fourth and fifth, while British Virgin Islands’ Rikkoi Brathwaite (10.19s) was sixth.

In the field, Cuba’s World Indoor silver medallist Leyanis Perez Hernandez, topped the women’s triple jump event, as her 14.73m first effort was not to be denied. Try as they did, Dominica’s World Indoor champion and current world number one Thea Lafond (14.62m), and Jamaican Shanieka Ricketts, with a season’s best 14.55m, had to settle for the runners-up positions.

Another Jamaica Kimberly Williams (13.74m) was seventh.

Elsewhere on the track, the men’s 200m was won by current world leader Kenny Bednarek, who continued his rich early season form to again lead an American sweep. Bednarek won in 19.89s, ahead of Courtney Lindsey (20.09s) and Kyree King (20.15s).

Caribbean athletes Alexander Ogando (20.27s) of Dominican Republic and Ian Kerr (20.87s) of Bahamas, finished fifth and ninth respectively.

Grant Holloway also continued his good knick with another world lead performance of 13.03s to win the men’s 110m hurdles, which was also swept by the Americans. Daniel Roberts (13.13s) and Freddie Crittenden (13.16s) were second and third, while Jamaica’s Olympic champion Hansle Parchment (13.28s) recovered from a horrible start to finish fourth.

The women’s event was won by Frenchwoman Cyrena Samba-Mayela, who equalled her National Record of 12.52s. Her training partner Jasmine Camacho-Quinn (12.54s) of Puerto Rico and American Tonea Marshall (12.55s). Bahamian World Indoor champion Devynne Charlton (12.63s) and Jamaica’s World champion Danielle Williams (12.65s), were fourth and sixth respectively.