ON GOOD form and in peak condition, Commonwealth and national champion Michelle-Lee Ahye has her eyes set on a third consecutive 100m and 200m sprint double at the NGC/Sagicor NAAA National Open Championships, which starts tomorrow and concludes on Sunday.
The three-day event will see the best of TT athletes – practically all headliners from last year’s event – carded to return to the Hasely Crawford Stadium, Mucurapo, for the most prestigious event on the NAAA calendar.
Most of the athletes will have their focus on achieving qualifying standards for this years CAC Games and NACAC Games.
With three national 100m gold medals from her last four championships, Ahye is expected to seal the three-peat, on Saturday, when both the preliminaries and finals run off. She will first challenge the 100m heats against the likes of national teammates, Semoy Hackett, Reyare Thomas, Kamaria Durant, Khalifa St Fort and others. The finalists will then meet in the final event on Saturday.
Ahye is fresh off two Diamond League silver medal performances. Earlier this month in Oslo, Norway, Ahye produced her 100m season best of 11.06 seconds.
At last year’s national championships, Ahye won the 100m gold when she clocked a new personal and national women’s record in 10.82 seconds, just ahead of Kelly-Ann Baptiste who clocked 10.88 seconds, not far off her (Baptiste’s) own 10.84 personal best.
Then, in the penultimate event last year, Ahye joined Baptiste and their Rebirth teammates for the women’s 4x100m final, which they won, as expected, in 42.94 seconds.
Ahye will attempt to claim a third straight 200m gold medal on Sunday. She, however, will not contest the women’s 4x100m final as Rebirth is not listed.
Also expected to shine among the men is another defending gold medalist and another on-form athlete, Jereem Richards.
Richards set the championship record last year in his golden run when he clocked 20.15 seconds.The Abilene stand-out was properly tested by another returning athlete and his teammate, Kyle Greaux, who finished second in 20.19 seconds.
The men’s 200m preliminary races will run off at approximately 3 pm on Sunday.
Only a few events will take place tomorrow, including the men and women’s hammer throw, women’s pole vault, and preliminaries in the men’s 100m, 400m, 800m and 10,000m run.
Action resumes on Saturday from 4 pm with the men’s shot put and closes with the 100m sprints at about 7 pm.
Sunday, the third and final day of competition, will open with the Masters Men 100m dash at 2.30 and close with the 4x100m relays at 6 pm.