Jamaicans Trinis, Bahamians, Kitticians, and all those who run track or are interested in Track & Field, the Inter-secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA) Boys and Girls Athletic Championships (“Champs”) is scheduled for Mar. 24-27, 2010 at the Jamaica National Stadium.
Why Not Just Jamaicans?
Well, for decades Jamaica was championed as the second sprint nation of the world, behind only the US. Some of our great female sprinters were called “Bronze queens” and stuff like that… only to find out later that some of the non-Jamaican gold-and-sliver winners were cheating… but that’s a different story. In 2008, that all changed. The US became the second sprint nation of the world, behind Jamaica. With people like Usain Bolt, Melaine Walker, Bridgette Foster-Hylton, Shelly-Ann Fraser, Asafa Powell, etc., it was clear.
But the next track legends from Jamaica are usually showcased at these Boys & Girls Champs. That’s where it starts… Class IV -> Class I. The other countries get to see what they are stacked up against early… before the records… before the slowing-down in a 100m or 200m finals race… before the jubilation that comes with winning an Olympic or World Championship gold medal. Everyone wants a piece of that action, be it Trinidad, St Vincent, the Bahamas. I’m not forgetting what the Golden Girls of the Bahamas did a few years ago.
The keenest watchers each year are the American colleges. They know if they luck out they can get a pick of talent that is unprecedented for such a small nation. It’s almost like how the US picks up nurses and teachers from Jamaica each year. Jamaica is one of the countries that produce the highest quality nursing and teaching staff percentage-wise. Jamaica is also the country that produces the fastest young women and men percentage-wise in the world.
Well, the US-based colleges and universities are watching but also looking through a microscope are the US track officials, agents, etc. They want to know what is the reason for this level of success at all levels by Jamaicans. For instance, at the Penn Relays each year, the Jamaican schools DOMINATE both the large and small high-school relays.
More Background on Champs
If you want more background information on Champs, head over to http://www.issasports.com/ or the Wikipedia page at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inter-Secondary_Schools_Boys_and_Girls_Championships .
Any Live Feed?
People like me who live out side the island and don’t have the chance togo to the 4-day event must follow it online. There have never been a consistent source for Live Champs video feed. This year the ISSA site (http://www.issasports.com/index.php?option=com_simsu&view=plans) is offering live video feed an entire month for US $10 or $20 for a year. If the service is acceptable quality, that’s a GREAT price. I do prefer FREE but ONLY if it’s acceptable quality. We are looking to find others and if we do, we’ll post their link here as well.
What can you do?
If you find a site that will be broadcasting live feeds of this year’s Champs or if you are affiliated with a site that will broadcast the live video or audio-only feed, please post here as well. We’ll remove invalid links so post things you can verify. Don’t risk being banned from Yowlink.com by trying to be a “wise guy”.