The 35th Vancouver Sun Harry Jerome International Track Classic concluded with a record 7450 audience over the Tuesday and Wednesday evenings of June 26 and 27. The China vs Canada Team Sprint Challenge saw the Pacific World Cup go to host country by a score of 139 to 100 points in the eight event contest over 100, 400, 4x100m and 4x400m for men and women. The regular events of the Jerome Classic attracted athletes from 10 countries, China, France, USA, US Virgin Islands, Jamaica, Great Britain, Australia, Mexico Russian and Canada. 83 athletes achieved their seasonal best performances and 45 recorded their personal best record ever.
Three meet records and one British Columbia record were broken. The Canadian quartet in the 4x100m of Gavin Smellie, Aaron Brown, Bolade Ajomale and Andre De Grasse dominated with 38.42 for a new meet record. They broke the record of 38.59 set in 1993 by the Santa Monica Track Club anchored by Olympic champion, Carl Lewis. This ranks Canada 6thon the world list for 2018.
China’s women team of YUAN Qiqi, GE Manqi, HUANG Guifen, LIANG Xiaojing won this event in 43.75 over Canada’s 44.30. This ranks China 9th on the 2018 IAAF world list. The past record was set by Canada back in 2005 of 44.51.
Yuan Qiqi anchored for China over Leya Buchanan who had a difficult exchange from Whitney Rowe. Canada’s time of 44.30 also beat the past record.
Madeline Price, Aiyanna Stiverne, Travia Jones and Sage Watson ran 3:32.08 in the 4x400m relay to break Canada’s meet record set in 2007 of 3:36.67. Sage who is ranked 6th on the IAAF world list in the 400m hurdles ran 52.7 split to anchor Team Canada. She will run her favourite event, the 400m hurdles in the national championships in Ottawa this week. The Canadian team for the NACAC championships set for Toronto on August 10-12, will be selected after the national championships.
Coquitlam Cheetahs broke the British Columbia record in the 4x100m relay with their time of 39.84 just behind China’s 39.62. Nick Ayin led off to Jerome Blake to Nathan Mah to anchor, James Linde. Jerome Blake had a terrific meet winning the open 100m in 10.35(-0.8) and recording a personal best in the 200m with his 20.74(-0.4) behind Gavin Smellie’s 20.72(-0.4). He is pointed towards a breakthrough to the national team at the championships this week.