Jamaica Gleaner / The throwing events in track and field are becoming more popular in Jamaica. That’s the viewpoint held by two-time World Champion-ships discus finalist Fedrick Dacres.
It’s his assessment that recent success by Jamaican throwers has shown younger competitors that progress is being made.
Speaking in Kingston last week, the 2015 and 2017 World Championships finalist explained, “When we started, we did it just for fun, we did it just to get to Champs and you know the Champs vibe and everything, but at this point, the young guys can actually see what can be gained from the throwing thing.”
Dacres and Traves Smikle made national athletics history by placing fourth and eighth at the World Championships with Danielle Thomas-Dodd close to a medal in the women’s shot put. In 2015, O’Dayne Richards placed third in the men’s shot put and in 2014, Jason Morgan copped a bronze medal in the discus at the Commonwealth Games with another Jamaican Chad Wright also in the final.
“They actually see Jamaicans in the finals,” the former Calabar High School star continued. “They see us, and I think it pulls people now,” Dacres offered.
The 2015 Pan-American Games gold medal winner thinks Jamaica will soon have many more world class throwers.
“I think in a few years, Jamaica might have like quite a few contenders for the World Championship team, Olympic team,” he projected, “because you have the young (Roje) Stona, of course, you have Kyle (Mitchell), you have Kai (Chang), Cobe (Graham), plus the Petersfield guys are coming hard, as usual, so the competition is there, you have Xachary (Dillon), so it should be an interesting few years to come.”
Coached at St Jago High School by Marlon Gayle, Stona won the discus event at Boys and Girls’ Championships and at the Carifta Games, while Mitchell, who now attends college in the United States of America, was the 2016 Class One shot put winner for Calabar. All the others are presently supervised by Robinson at Calabar.