Pacers bring home medal haul
Bermuda Pacers Track Club returned home this week with 35 medals from the Russell E Blunt East Coast Invitational Track Meet in North Carolina. The 26-member team won 11 golds, 15 silvers and nine bronze medals during the weekend meet, fulfilling the expectations of head coach Cal Simons.
“This year’s Pacers team was a very talented group of young athletes,” he said.
“Fifteen members of the team have just competed in the Caribbean Union of Teachers Games and four others represented Bermuda at the 2018 Carifta Games and they were all very excited about taking their athletic skills overseas.”
In addition to the medals, the 13-14 boys won their division for the third straight year, helping the Pacers boys team place second behind hosts Durham Striders, while the Pacers girls placed fifth overall.
In the combined team scores, the Pacers finished third overall with 335 points, marking the sixth straight year that the club have placed in the top five. Over 1,300 athletes representing 90 teams from across the United States and Mexico competed in the event.
Kahzi Sealey and Sancho Smith led the Pacers gold-medal haul, with Sealey winning two golds in the 13-14 boys 3,000 and 1,500 metres while Smith also won gold in the 800 metres and high jump. Smith also just missed out on setting a new meet record of 1.85 metres in the high jump, leaving the record of 1.84 metres, set by Pacers athlete Ryan Furbert in 2007, to stand for at least another year.
Also winning gold medals were Jeada Grant in the 9-10 girls 1,500 metres, Arima Turner in the 9-10 girls 200 metres and Sanaa Rae Morris in the 13-14 girls 400 metres. Isael Smith did likewise in the 11-12 boys high jump along with Chayse Tanner in the 13-14 boys 200 metres, Clevonte Lodge in the 15-16 boys 400 metres and Johndell Cumberbatch in the 17-18 boys 1,500 metres.
“The club coaches are extremely pleased by the performances of the athletes and were not surprised by their results,” added Simons, particularly pleased with the athletes who made their debut appearances at the meet. “They handled themselves very well and were not overwhelmed by the size of the meet.
“This team’s performance is one of the best the club has produced at the Russell E Blunt East Coast Invitational meet. The performance can also be described as a total team effort by the athletes, coaches and parents who came to support the event.”
Winning silver medals for the Pacers were Arima Turner in the 9-10 girls 100 metres, Ellise Dickinson in the 9-10 girls 400 metres, Sanaa Rae Morris in the 13-14 girls 200 metres and Jezhari Talbot in the 13-14 girls 800 metres.
Daylen Scott claimed two silver medals in the 9-10 boys 200 metres and long jump, while Isael Smith was second in the 11-12 boys 200 metres and Jaelyn Grant second in the 11-12 boys 800 metres.
Sancho Smith captured his third medal, a silver, in the 13-14 boys 400 metres, while also winning silver was Tanner in the 13-14 boys long jump, Sajan Harvey in the 17-18 boys 1,500 metres, Cumberbatch in the 17-18 boys 800 metres and Javed Sutton-Simons in the 13-14 boys shot put and discus.
The Pacers parent/coaches 4x100 metres relay team also got in on the action with a silver medal in their race. The team comprised of Vanessa Turner, Allison Outerbridge, Michaela Outerbridge and Janine Scott.
The bronze medal-winners for the club were: Miniya Wainwright, in the 15-16 girls high jump; Scott, in the 9-10 boys 100 metres; Isael Smith, in the 11-12 boys 100 metres; Tanner in the 13-14 boys 100 metres and Sutton-Simons in the 13-14 boys javelin.
Clevonte Lodge claimed a bronze in the 15-16 200 metres along with Ryan Outerbridge in the 15-16 boys 1,500 metres, Cumberbatch in the 17-18 boys 3,000 metres and the 9-10 girls 4x100 metres relay team. This team consisted of LaShee Jones, Arima Turner, Ellise Dickinson and Karis Brooks.
Some 20-plus family members and friends accompanied the team to the meet, which marked the Pacers’ 37th time competing at the event.