Protests propel Hydel to Prep Champs win

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Photo: Shanoya Swaby anchors Hydel to gold in the Girls 4x200m relay ahead of Our Lady of the Angels Prep and Quest Prep.

 

Protest action at the end of an intriguing 2014 Jamaica Independent Schools Association (JISA)/Serge Island National Prep Schools Boys’ and Girls’ Track and Field Championships at the National Stadium on Saturday ruined what was a beautiful spectacle of track and field.

For three glorious days over 2000 children battled for points for their schools and in the end it came down to the relays to determine the champions. The two-way dog fight between defending champions Hydel and former champions Vaz seemed to have gone to the latter but was reversed after Hydel lodged protests about the 4x200m relays.

The schools were tied on points going into the final event, the Boys 4x200m and Hydel appeared to have the edge early on in the race, but Vaz finished strongly to end the race second behind Lannaman’s and some of their over exuberant supporters ran onto the track to celebrate before the race was complete.

Fans sat around waiting to hear while the officials deliberated and in the end Vaz was disqualified but not for the boys race, but the girls race instead. They along with Knox and Wolmers were deemed to have cut over too early and this changed the tally allowing Hydel to defend their title with 207.50 points. Vaz finished in second position with 202.50 points, Lannaman’s third with 139 points, and Quest with 109 points in fourth place. Wolmers completed the top five with 93 points.

 Not surprisingly Vaz won the boys category with 117 points, followed by Lannaman’s 77 and Emmanuel Christian with 71.50 points but Hydel who was clearly stronger than the rest in the girls section won with 144.50 points ahead of Vaz  on 85 and Wolmer’s on 61 points.