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Labban embraces Carifta changes

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Former technical director of Team Athletics SVG Gideon Labban has fully endorsed the changes which will come into effect for the 2014 Junior Carifta Track and Field Championships set for Martinique.{{more}}

Among the rule changes is the upping of the age from Under 17 to Under 18.

Labban sees this as a step in the right direction.

“The rule change is quite a commendable move in light of what has been established by the IAAF World Youth Champs(1999) and CAC Games(2012), both Under 18 and with the Carifta Games already regarded as the best developmental junior meet in the world, so the rule change is just an enhancement”, Labban told SEARCHLIGHT.

Changes were made to the shot put, discus, javelin and the sprint hurdles, with the 300 metres hurdles, which has been extended to 400 metres, while the female pentathlon has been changed to the heptathlon and the male heptathlon has been altered to octathlon.

“Under the current Carifta rules, athletes especially those who are 16-plus and 17 years old in the year of competition have to compete in the Under-20 category against their stronger 18 and 19-year-old counterparts, using the same throwing implements and same 110 hurdle height, which is a difficult transition for those young athletes”, he further assessed.

Labban noted that in the new Under-18 category in 2014, the 16+ years athletes would continue to use the same implements that they used while in the Under-17 category, the same as World Youth Championships and CAC.

According to the former TASVG technical director, “This would allow those 16 plus athletes a bit more time to perfect their art in events in keeping with their physical maturation; also, the selection and training of athletes for Under-18 regional and international competitions will be an obviously easier process without any adjustments as before”.

Another of the changes which would not have much effect on St Vincent and the Grenadines is the increase in the maximum number of participants from 70 to 80. (RT)

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