Not since 2016 when the Virgin Islands National Championships were held at the Ivana Eudora Kean High School Track and Field on St. Thomas has the annual competition happened in the territory. Thanks to the approval of the IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federations), the world governing body for the sport, the VITFF was granted the option of designating the Alian Pompey Invitational in Guyana as its 2017 championships. A few senior V.I. National Team members traveled there to compete.
There were a lot of special moments on the newly installed surface at the St. Croix Educational Complex Track and Field with over 110 participants showing up for the event.
Officials decided to start a few minutes late with the first race the 3000 meters which combined all age groups, to give St. Thomas Track Club runners time for their flight to arrive. They took advantage of the opportunity as Evan Jones of the St. Thomas Track Club, and sophomore at the Univ. of North Carolina Wilmington, the silver medalist in the CARIFTA 1500 meters was the only runner to go under 10 minutes with a 9:54 to win it and take the under 20 title as well; second place overall went to Billy Bohlke V.I.Pace Runners looking like his days of old as the top middle distance runner at LSU with a time of 10:13 to secure the masters title; Shane Degannes STTC coach for Evan Jones was third overall and second master in 10:16; Dominique Puglise of Jolly Roger TC was second in under 20 in 10:28; Mickey Dizon-Bauman JRTC was the first under 15 in 10:36; Brice Richards JRTC was second u15 in 12:06.
Two females contested for the 3000m title, Bridget Klein coach for JRTC outdistance Rachael Conhoff who she coaches with a time of 11:36 to 13:33.
Malique Smith SCTC and senior at the Univ. of Arkansas Pine Bluff dominated the 800m which was billed as a showdown between he and Jones to take first in 1:57.52; Osaze Williams Hounds and Foxes Track Club finished and impressive second overall and first u17 with a time of 2:04.34; Evan Jones STTC obviously not fully recovered from the 3000m was first u20 in 2:15.47 and third overall; Dominique Puglise JRTC show courage after the short break between races to take second in the u20 in 2:24.71; Billy Bohlke VIPR hanging tough won the masters title in 2:28.95; David Conoff JFTC was third in the u20 in 2:32.36; Randall Nielsen was the second place masters in 2:54.03.
Mikaela Smith STCTC and silver medalist in the Tennessee High School 800m state championships led the females to the line in 2:24.07 for first overall and u20; Rachael Conoff JRTC was second u20 in 2:45.88; Shaiah David Home School STT was the first u15 finisher in 2:53.11; Alexandra Bohla JRTC was second u15 in 3:08.23 and Ashlyn Morrell third in 3:29.90.
The Under-13 female 800m was dominated by SCTC with Michelle Smith leading the way in 2:38.75; Akyra Joseph SCTC was second in 3:06.35; Kirsten SCTC was third in3:32.03; Lauren Jones SCTC was the first u11 in 3:33.94; Katelyn Jones SCTC was second in 3:59.80.
In the Under-15 male 800m Kaden Gleason JRTC was first in u13 in 2:44.73; Nico Forno D’Adamo JRTC was second in 3:15.36; Cole Sommer JRTC third in 3:22.11; Aleak Miller Ram TC took the u15 title in 3:04.61
Rashawn Gordon Cheetah Track Club had and impressive performance in the 100m as the 2018 CARIFTA team member finished first overall and in the u17 group in 11.92; Gregory Gibson of SCTC was second in the race and first in the u20 group in 11.95; Lamar Miller SCTC was third and second in the u20 in 12.07; Raynel Charlerly Cheetah TC was third in u 20 in 12.08; Miguel Thamas Simba TC was first in the u17 in 14.21; Anthony Isles V.I. Express TC was second in the u17 in 14.27; John Jah’ Mary STC was second in the Under-13 in 17.14.
Nia Jack SCTC and 2016 Pan Am Youth Gold Medal Winner led the females to the finish with a time of 12.63; Ketara Perez VIETC was second overall and first u 20 in 14.99; Jennifer Sturm hammer thrower and Unattached was third and first masters in 15.25.
In the female under 13100m race Keyara Roach V.I. Express Track Club was first overall and also for the u13 in 16.42; Kyliz Osorio VIETC was second overall and second in the u11 in16.58; Jeniqua Weekes SCTC was second in u11 in17.10 and Omega Robles VIETC was third in u11 in 17.43.
In the under 11 male race Micah Jones VIETC won it in 16.76; Ejajnie Wrensford VIETC was second in 17.55 and Terrance Charles Jr. was third in 17.68.
In the under 15 male race Aleak Miller Ram Track Club was first in 15.29; Nathan Langley JRTC was second and first in Under-13 in 15.35 and Leon Lacane VIETC was third overall and second in Under-15 in 16.30.
In the Under-15 race eleven year-old Michelle Smith SCTC won it in 14.22 also for first in u13; Ariana Edgar SCTC took the Under-15 title and second overall in 14.31; Mala Tolud St. Thomas TC was second in u15 in 14.52 and Isabella Supinski STTC was third in 15.34.
Barrymore Berley VIETC coach won the male masters 100m in 13.04; Billy Bohlke VIPR was second in 14.09 and Randall Nielsen was third in 16.46.
Evan Jones STTC won his second event of the day with a first place in the mile with a time of 4:53.35 which also gave him first u20; Jones coach Shane Degannes STTC took second place overall and first for masters in 5:13.03; Dominic Puglise JRTC was third overall and second u20 in 5:14.64; Mikey Dizon-Bauman JRTC was the first u15 male in 5:18.81; Billy Bohlke VIPR was the second masters in 5:37.85; Brice Richards JRTC was the second u 15 in 6;09.81; Kaedon Gleason JRTC was the first u13 in 6:14.87; Randall Nielsen was the third masters in 6:27.87; Aleak Miller RTC was third in u15 in 8:03.662; Nico Rorno D’Adamo JRTC was second u13 in 7:17.46; Cole Sommer JRTC was third u13 in 7:28.25.
Only two females contested in the mile, Rachael Conhoff JRTC was first overall and u 20 in 6:49.84; Shaiah David Home School STT was second and first u 13 in 7:28.25.
Alfred Thomas SCTC looked good coming across the line to win the 400m male event in 52.52 good for first in the u20 also; Kymani Ross VIETC was second and first in u17 in 5.40; Valence Modeste SCTC was third overall and second in u20 in 54.45; Gavin Goodwin VIETC was third u20 in 59.59; Eusbion Acosta STC was second in u17 in 65.09 and Kalim JnoFinn SCTC was first in u15 in 67.17.
Aleak Miller RTC was first in the u15 400m race in 1:21.28; Kymari Springer VIETC was second overall and first in u11 in 1:30.34; Jovanny D’Paula VIETC was third overall and second in u11 in 1:31.48; Melenik James RTC was third in u11 in :51.80.
In the 400m female Sherma Williams of the Cheetah Track Club was first place overall the race and first for u17in 64.23; Michelle Smith SCTC was second and first u13 in 5.52; Stefanie Mathew SCTC was third and first u 20 in 66.49; Kelsey Bohla JRTC was second u17 in 68.64; Ryleigh Murphy SCTC was second u13 in 1:11.09; Shaiah David HSSTT was first u15 in 1:16.50 and Ashlyn Morrell SCTC was second u15 in 1:30.42
In the under 11 females Kyliz Charles VIETC was first in 1:25.37; Jeniqa Weekes SCTC was second in 1:26.03 and Barecia Brooks third in 1:31.20. Kirsten Jones SCTC was first u13 and fourth in the race in 1:34.31.
In the masters’ race Randall Nielsen JRTC was first in 2:05.95; Willie Lewis RTC second in 2:08.72 and Larry Williams SCTC third in 2:13.82.
Malique Smith SCTC was the top male 200m sprinter in 22:39; Reshawn Gordon CTC was second and first in u 17 in 23.45; Gregory Gibson was third and first in u 20 in 23.58; Raynel Charlerly was second u 20in 24.63; Alfred Harris SCTC was third u 20 in 25.54 and Klim JnoFinn SCTC was first u 15 in 28.96
In the under 11 male race Miciah Jones VIETC was first in 33.74; Jamil Millard VIETC second in 34.27; Terrance Charles Jr. SCTC third in 40.23.
In the male u 15 race Miguel Thomas Simba Track Club was first in 29.50; Aleak Miller RTC second 31.72; Nanthan Langley JRTC third and first in u12 in 32.93 and John Jah’Mary STC third in u 15 in 35.10.
In the masters male Randall Nielsen JRTC was first in 30.71; Willie Lewis RTC was second in 43.80 and Larry Williams SCTC was third in 46.44.
In the female 200n under 20 race Sherma Williams CTC was first overall and first u17 in 27.72; Stefanie Mathew SCTC second and first u 20; Kelsey Bhola JRTC third and second u17 in 29.97 and Kitara Perez VIETC second Under-20 in 32.08.
Maia Tolud St. Thomas Track Club was first in the u15 200m in 29.23; Akyra Joseph SCTC second and first in the u13 in 29.30 and Isabella Supinski STTC was third and second in u15 in 32.06.
In the under 13 race Keyara Roach VIETC was first and first u13 in 34.47; Jeniqua Weekes SCTC was second and first in u11 in 36.50; Barecia Brooks VIETC was third and second in u11 in 37.30 and Omega Robles VIETC was third in u11 in 38.34.
Leyla Brown SCTC was the female winner with a throw of 9m 73; Anthony Iles VIETC was the male u17 winner with8.56; Raoul Acosta STC was the u15 male winner with 6.97; Ariana Edgar was the female u 15 winner with11.54; Jennifer Storm Unattached was the masters female winner with 9.20; Willie Lewis RTC was the male masters winner with 8.20.
4 x 400m mixed relay (2 males/2 females)
Race No. 1 St. Croix Track Club first in 4:06.07; Jolly Roger Track Club second in 4:50.48 Race No. 2 St. Croix Track Club first 5:52.48 second V.I. Express Track Club 6:17.83
1 Mile Walk
Approximately two dozen walkers including spectators participated in the recreational event. NOTES:
1] Key to clubs: CTC = Cheetah Track Club, St. Thomas STTC = St. Thomas Track Club, St. Thomas SCTC = St. Croix Track Club, St. Croix
HFTC = Hounds and Foxes Track Club, St. Croix VIETC = V.I. Express Track Club, St. Croix
JRTC = Jolly Roger Track Club, St. Croix RTC = Ram Track Club, St. Croix
STC = Simba Track Club, St. Croix
VIPR = Virgin Islands Pace Runners, St. Croix
2] The introduction of mixed relays was inspired by the IAAF President’s Newsletter received by VITFF the day of the competition that the IAAF World Championships in 2019 will introduce mixed male/female participants for the first time, thus making it possible for expanded entry for small countries like the Virgin Islands.
3] VITFF recognizes all the partners that help make the 2019 National Track and Field Championships possible including but not limited to: participating athletes, coaches, volunteers, parents, clubs (particularly those traveling from St. Thomas), schools, the St. Croix Educational Complex, the V.I. Department of Education, the V.I. Police Dept., EMS of the Dept. of Health, local media, the organizing clubs (St. Croix Track Club and The Virgin Islands Pace Runners); the V.I. Legislature , the Government of the V.I., the Virgin Islands Olympic Committee and the IAAF Dividend Grant program, others
4] Performances in this competition are subject equalization for V.I. National Track and Field Teams for the upcoming year.
5] Evan Jones will represent the Virgin Islands in the IAAF World U20 Championships in Tampere, Finland in July in the 1500m
6] Mikaela Smith will represent the Virgin Islands in the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires Argentina in October in the 800m and Cross-Country
7] Malique Smith will represent the Virgin Islands in the CAC Games in July in the 800m/relays
8] Nia Jack will represent the Virgin Islands in the CAC Games in July in the 100m
9] The competition changes venue each year. The 2019 Virgin Islands National Championships will be held in St. Thomas
10] Full results may be accessed on: http://virginislandspace.org/vitff.html