Performance of Jamaica’s athletes lauded

KINGSTON, Jamaica: Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, Olivia Grange, says Jamaica’s success at the recently concluded track and field world championships in Berlin, Germany, will continue for years to come.

Jamaica won seven gold, four silver and two bronze medals at the games, finishing second in the overall medal count behind the United States of America, which won a total of 13.

“This is our best performance yet at an international event. But our talent base shows that there is much more in the tank and we are preparing well for the future. We have the Commonwealth Games next year, another World Championships after that and the London Olympic Games in 2012. We will continue to build on our strengths and we will be a dominant force in track and field for many years to come.

“There are some areas that we have to work on, primarily our field and middle distance events and we will be placing strong emphasis on these areas in the coming months,” she said.

“While here, I met with the German minister with responsibility for sport, Dr. Wolfgang Schauble, and he expressed a desire for co-operation between the two countries in sports development. He stated specifically that Germany would be willing to assist Jamaica with field events.

“The Kenyan Minister of Sports also invited us to send athletes to Kenya to train for the middle and longer distances. We hope to have a stronger presence in disciplines other than the sprints at the 2012 Games,” Grange said.

Grange said the nation’s gold medal winners proved themselves true world beaters and the silver and bronze medalists helped to reinforce Jamaica’s dominance.

“Every athlete who competed here is special. Some did not make it to the finals and some got there, but did not win a medal. We are proud of every one of them.

“When they take to the track in the black, gold and green, they ignite the passions of our great nation. They show the world who we are and who we can be. Jamaica is greater for their excellence,” Grange said. (JIS)

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