is said that there is quicksilver in the veins of Jamaican Sprinters,
a combination of determination and their blinding footspeed have
produced medals at Olympic and other World Championship finals.
sprinters such as Don Quarrie, Merlene Otty, Lennox Miller, Deon
Hemmings, Bertland Cameron, Herb McKenley, Authur Wint have graced
the history books of Olympics dating back to 1948. If we include
offspring of Jamaican immigrants, in the last 4 Olympic 100-meter
men's finals, a Jamaican has won three of those races, and broken
the world record (Ben Johnson-Canada, 1988; Linford Christie-England,
1992; Donovan Bailey- Canada, 1996). Jamaica is truely a
fact some of the top American sprinters Sandra Farmer, Inger Miller
(see Lennox Miller) and Marion Jones have parents who are from Jamaican
or the Caribbean.
has the prestigious honor of having the most success per capita
of any country world in track and field. Jamaica's olympic history
started in the 1948 Olympics when Jamaica's first track Gold Medallists
Dr Anther Wint won the 400m. He along other Jamaican greats, Herb
McKenley, Leslie Laing and George Rhoden then won the 4 x 400 relay
in the 1952 Olympics to put Jamaica on the map.
continues to achieve success at Olympics and international competitions
through out years with athletes like Donald Quarrie (gold 200m,
silver 100m, in the 1976 Olympics), (Lennox Miller) Bert Cameron
(silver, 400 relay, 1988), to Grace Jackson (silver, 200m, 1988),
to Winthrop Graham (silver, 400m hurdles, 1992), Raymond Stewart,
Juliet Cuthbert (silver, 100, 200m, 1992), Deon Hemmings (gold,
400 hurdles, 1996) and track Queen Merlene Ottey.
and field is a part of the curriculum
in most of the schools in Jamaica. The National Boys and
Girls Championship (Champs') is an annual event held at the National
Stadium in Kingston and is the premier event where athletes can
showcase there talents. Winning athletes this event usually advance
to represent Jamaica in annual Penn Relays in Pennsylvania, USA,
sometimes"dubbed" the Jamaican Relays because of the Jamaica's
outstanding performance at this event.
in Jamaican Track and Field History
Wint wins an Olympic gold medal in the 400 Meters in 1948, followed
by Herb McKenley for the silver.
Rhoden in 1952 brought home the 400M gold, and again Herb McKenley
took the silver.
Herb McKenley gets the silver in the 100m posting the same time
as the winner.
got the silver in the 800, a feat that he repeated in
the 1952 games and with the 400m gold became the first to gain
that double(sorry Mal Whitfield). Cynthia Thompson was a hint
of what was to come in the 1948 Olympics, with a 25.6 world
record in a 200m heat. Una Morris made a credible impression
by placing 4th in the 200m at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. Merlene
Ottey was the first to medal and Deon Hemmings the first to win
the gold in 1996.
is the only country to defeat the USA in Olympics men's 4x400m with
a time of 3:03.90 at the 1952 games, that set a new
world record, that was unbroken for eight years.
City, 1968 Lennox Miller is caught at the tape by American Jim Hinds,to
the Mexico City Olympics 1968 with Errol Stewart the on the lead
off leg, Michael Fray, on second, Clifton Forbes on third leg and
Lennox Miller on the anchor they equalled the world record the 4x100
meters in 38.6 and went on to set thenew world of 38.39 in the semi
final. Jamaica thus became the first country to go sub 39 sec, the
first team gain that feat. The Jamaican record was broken at the
Sydney 2000 Olympics, the new record is 38.20.
1972 Lennox Miller captures the bronze medal in the 100 finals won
by Valery Borzov of Russia
1976 Quarrie is the prohibitive favorite to win double sprint gold
is edged by Trinidadian Hasely Crawford. Quarrie in the 100m. Quarrie
who was considered the fastest turn-runner ever goes on to wins
the 200-meter gold by a huge margin.
merchandise prowdly promoting Jamaica