Things Jamaica

Another World Record Run

Jamaica’s girls’ Under-20 4x100m relay team celebrates what was then considered a World-Record run of 42.58 during the Carifta Games at the National Stadium on Sunday April 17, 2022. From left are Tina Clayton, Serena Cole, Brianna Lyston, and Tia Clayton.

Jamaica’s under-20 girls’ 4x100m world record at the Carifta Games in April will not be ratified by track and field governing body, World Athletics.

Women’s 100m gold medallist Tina Clayton, who was delighted to finally share the podium with her twin sister Tia, said: “Well, it was a really great race. I did an interview after my semifinal race in the 100m and I had told you guys that I know my team will come here and do their best and I think they came out to do their best.

“It feels very great for Tia to win a medal because she didn’t have a chance to win a medal in the 100m. She was on the anchor, and you know that when you’re on the anchor in a relay race, all depends on you, but she came out here and executed well.” 

However, Jamaica’s 42.58-second clocking has been rejected by World Athletics because one of the four members of the quartet of Serena Cole, Tina Clayton, Brianna Lyston and Tia Clayton was not drug tested at the completion of the race on April 17 in Kingston, Jamaica.

Subsequently, the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO), has questioned the reasoning of World Athletics, saying the ‘untested’ athlete had been tested a day before the unaccepted World Record-run.

In a release today, JADCO said the body will adjust, ensuring it tests athletes after achieving world marks, regardless of the frequency of tests.

According to JADCO, a test of the athletes, according to World Anti-Doping Agency protocols, is considered in-competition testing, no matter which day of the competition the test occurs.

Government Wants Investigation

A disciplinary subcommittee of the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO) Board is being established to carry out an investigation and take appropriate action, following the decision by World Athletics not to ratify a world record achieved recently by a quartet of Jamaica’s young athletes.

Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, made the announcement during her contribution to the 2022/23 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on Wednesday (June 8).

At the April Carifta Games at the National Stadium in Kingston, the talented young athletes – Serena Cole, Tina Clayton, Brianna Lyston and Tia Clayton – won the Under 20 4×100 metres relay in the world record-breaking time of 42.58 seconds.

The time will not be ratified by World Athletics because one of the four members of the quartet was not drug tested at the completion of the race on April 17.

The Minister announced, as well, that compulsory retraining is to be done of all technical services staff on the rules of competition governing the major sporting organisations. She added that a list of these organisations is to be agreed on by the JADCO Board.

Minister Grange also said that JADCO will review all procedures or protocols, which would require an event organiser or body requesting in-competition testing, to provide rules and specific and timely instructions in relation to that organisation, prior to the event.

“As Minister, I offer a sincere apology to the young athletes affected by this unfortunate set of circumstances for which there must be consequences,” she said, noting that this situation must never recur.

She informed that the report from the JADCO Chairman found that the failure to test one member of the relay team was “because of an apparent existing best practice at JADCO not to test an athlete twice within 24 hours of competition”.

She added that the “best practice” is not contained in the JADCO Rules, the International Standard for Testing, the World Anti-Doping Agency rules, and is not contained in any internal memorandum or document.

“It appears that it was an instruction originating, at least, from the time of the previous executive director,” Minister Grange said.

She disclosed, as well, that the JADCO chairman’s report also stated that “JADCO applied its intended practice over and above what appears to be explicit instructions from the JAAA (Jamaica Athletics Administration Association)” – that is to provide “six tests per day with testing being done on any athlete who achieves a national or world record”.

Minister Grange said in recent years, Jamaica’s reputation in anti-doping in sport has been excellent. “This record must be maintained and built upon,” she said.

In the meantime, the Minister informed that JADCO is now part of a Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) project and will increase testing of national and international footballers. Additionally, she said JADCO will increase testing of athletes who qualify for the various disciplines at the upcoming Athletics World Championships and the Commonwealth Games. “We are tightening up,” she added.

Minister Grange also announced the appointment of members to the Antidoping Disciplinary Panel to serve for the next three years, ending May 2025.

The panel will be chaired by Kent Gammon with Vice Chairs Georgia Gibson Henlin and O’Neil Brown.

The other members of the Panel are Dr. Japheth Ford, Dr. Donovan Calder, Dr. Marjorie Vassell, Denise Forrest, Heron Dale and Dean Martin.