Public and private secondary school track and field athletes will get their chance to compete for annual bragging rights this week in what promises to be hardly-fought high school competition.
The Cayman Islands Ministry of Sports, in a joint venture with the Ministry of Education and the Cayman Islands Athletics Association, is holding the fifth annual Inter-Secondary Schools Track and Field Championships.
The 2013 races start on Wednesday, 20 February, with finals the following day.
More than 300 high school students will compete in a series of sporting activities to test their skills in speed, agility and strength.
The event is free and open to the public. Preliminary races on Wednesday are from 9am to 1pm with finals on Thursday from 2 to 7pm at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex.
School teams include Triple C, Cayman International, Grace Christian Academy, John Gray, Cayman Academy, Wesleyan Christian Academy; St. Ignatius Catholic, Cayman Prep, Montessori By the Sea and Layman E. Scott.
The Inter-Secondary Championships were created by the Ministry of Sports to promote track and field development. The student athletes will compete in 11 track and field events, including 100 metres, 200m, 400m, 800m, 1500m, 3,000m, long jump, shot put, discus, javelin and high jump.
“The Inter-Secondary Championships is an opportunity for Caymanian track and field student athletes to come together in celebration of sport,” said Mark Scotland, Cayman Islands minister of sports.
“The championships provide an invaluable opportunity for our budding athletes to push themselves, develop strengths and prepare for bigger challenges.”
During a news conference last week, Bernie Bush, vice president of the Cayman Islands Athletic Association, also endorsed the championships.
“From the time Dalton Watler got into the Ministry of Sports this has been one of his pet projects,” he said. “It has taken off over the last three years when Maples came on board with Minister Scotland. They really pushed it and made it a priority.
“Athletes want to run when spectators can see them, not during working hours. To have the finals in the evenings was a beautiful idea. People should take advantage of it. In other countries this would be a big thing.”