Jamaica has had more success, per year, in international track and field competition, than any other country. In our 1948 Olympic debut, Dr.
Arthur Wint won ourfirst Olympic and gold medal in the 400m. He along with the other members of the legendary relay team, Herb McKenley, Leslie Laing, and George Rhoden (gold medalists, 1952), set a standard that has been upheld by our athletes ever since. From Donald Quarrie (gold 200m, silver 100m, 1976) to David Weller (bronze cyclying, 1980) to Andrew Phillips (6th, 200m swimming medley, 1984) to Bert Cameron (silver, 400 relay, 1988), to Grace Jackson (silver, 200m, 1988), to Winthrop Graham (silver, 400m hurdles, 1992), Raymond Stewart, Juliet Cuthbert (silver, 100, 200m, 1992), Deon Hemmings (gold, 400 hurdles, 1996) and to the seemingly eternal queen of track, Merlene Ottey who has won more Olympic and IAAA medals than any other Jamaican. Most athletes began their careers at school track meets.
The National Boys and Girls Championship (Champs’) is a premier event for the high scholars and many past students who vigorously support their alma maters. The high standard of competition has made Champs’ thefirst stop on the overseas college recruiting circuit. The Penn Relays High School Division could be called the Jamaica Relays because our youngsters dominate the field. Jamaican teams have, on several occasions, taken the top 3 positions in the 4×400 relays for high school boys.
Some major sports that is still in Jamaica history are the following: cricket, we have been made proud by the achievements of George Headley, Michael Holding, Courtney Walsh, Jeffrey Dujon, Lawrence Rowe, Allan Rae, Maurice Foster, Jimmy Adams, Robert Samuels. Next was Football our torch was carried abroad by Lindy Delapenha, thefirst Jamaican to play in the English Premier League. Others like John Barnes (England/Newcastle) serve as inspiration to schoolboys participating in the fiercely contested DaCosta and M..