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Sprinter Webb feels the pressure

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Promising sprinter Kyle Webb admits he will more nervous when he runs in Carifta than when he competed at the last year’s Youth Commonwealth Games.

Bermuda will host the annual Carifta Games next month for the first time since 2004, and Webb thinks the pressure of performing in front of an expectant home crowd will weigh heavy on his young shoulders.

However, the Bermuda Pacers runner, who will compete in the boys Under-20s 100 and 200 metres, is determined not to let his nerves get the better of him

“It’s a big step up from a local track meet and it’s more nerve-racking. I would say the most important thing is to not let your nervousness break you down,” said the 16-year-old.

“At first I was nervous because there are those negative people out there who say you can’t do it, but I use that to motivate me I’m confident I can show them I can do it.

“Last year I went to the Youth Commonwealth Games in the Isle of Man; it was good experience but I’ll be more nervous in these Games because they’re in front of my home crowd.”

Webb said he was happy with his preparations for the Games, which will run from April 7-9, and believed he was on track to improve on his previous Games display.

“The last time I competed in Carifta was my first experience of an international meet and I did good hopefully I can do better this year,” he said.

“My times are better than I expected and I’m trying to do the best I can do.”

Rising middle distance runner Zakiyyah Showers is also slightly feeling the strain ahead of the Games.

The 13-year-old feels she has a responsibility to make her coaches and family proud whenever she flies the flag for Bermuda.

“There is a lot of pressure because people expect a lot from me and if I don’t do well it’s kind of depressing,” said Showers, who will compete in the 1500 and 3000 metres.

Showers, who won the KPMG Front Street Mile Girls Middle School race, finished fourth in 3000 metres at last year’s Games in Jamaica against competitors who were much older than her.

And this time around she believes she can go at least one better and secure a podium finish.

“I want to get a medal in both of my events because (the Games) is at home and I aim is to do my best,” said Showers, who won the recent Telford Electric Magic Mile senior girls event.

“I hope to eventually gain a scholarship to an athletic college and my ultimate goal is the compete in the Olympics when I get older.”

More than 500 athletes from 27 Caribbean countries will compete in next month’s Games to be held on the Island for the first time in seven years.

The competition has been running since 1972 and is considered by many as the top youth track and field competition in the world.

When Bermuda last staged the event in 2004, current world record holder Usain Bolt, of Jamaica, became the first junior athlete to break 20 seconds in the 200 metres in a time of 19.3 seconds.

A total of 23 Bermuda athletes have qualified for the Games.

(Photo by Mark Tatem) Carifta hopeful Zakiyyah Showers
(Photo by Mark Tatem) Zakiyyah Showers
(Photo by Mark Tatem) Focused: Sprinter Kyle Webb

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Published March 20, 2012 at 2:00 am (Updated March 21, 2012 at 9:39 am)

Sprinter Webb feels the pressure

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