Edwin Allen first casualty of new relay rule
Last Saturday, the Central Hurdles and Relays Meet was the first meet on local soil where the new relay exchange zone rule came into play since the IAAF technical committee made the change last November.
Here the athletes have 30 metres to make the change, whereas with the previous rule, they could only make the change within 20 metres, despite getting an extra 10 metres for the acceleration.
In an interview recently, several of the top high school coaches expressed their liking for the new rule change, including Michael Dyke, coach of reigning ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls' Championships title holders Edwin Allen.
"This is a very good rule and it is very unlikely that any team can change out of the zone," said Dyke, shortly after the adjustment was made.
However, on Saturday, one of Dyke's teams created history by becoming the first local team to infringe this rule.
In the first relay event on the track involving high school teams, Edwin Allen's Class One 4x100 metres quartet failed to finish in the first heat.
On the first exchange, the incoming athlete failed to hand over the baton to the outgoing runner as she ran out of the exchange zone.
That was, however, the only incident in the sprint relay as there was no more violation of the new rule, and, incidentally, Edwin Allen was the most dominant female team winning in both class three and four.
Their classes three team clocked an impressive new record of 45.36 seconds, while in class four they won in 49.56 seconds.
St Catherine High dominated class two with a record run of 46.22 seconds with Holmwood Technical coming out on top in class one in 45.52 seconds.
Among the males, it was Kingston College that came out on top after taking class three in a new record of 44.76 seconds, and class two in 42.72 seconds