2015 IPC Athletics World Championships, Doha, Qatar

October 26, 2015

Sheldon Debuts, Alphanso Bows into Action


Paralympian Sheldon Cox, made history on Sunday, October 25, 2015 by becoming the first Jamaican athlete to participate in wheelchair racing at an international games.

Cox was in semi-final three but was unable to match the speed and experience of other competitors and failed to progress to the final.

Introduced to the sport just over two months ago and his training hampered severely by the late arrival of his chair in Doha from Kingston owing to airline delays, Cox’s back was against the wall but he was not discouraged: “I realistically was not expecting a place in the final. I am new to the sport. I know that come next year it will be a different ball game”.

Meanwhile Alphanso “The Ambassador” Cunningham in the Javelin, fell victim, as some other athletes have, to the changed judging system of the IPC which has removed from the discuss, shot put and javelin competitions the Raza system of a performance based allocation of points for classes of disabilities and implemented a placement system based exclusively on the measured distances.

This has proved to be inequitable particularly where classes of athletes of differing disabilities have been merged as in Cunningham’s case. Cunningham, an F53 athlete in his events, has been pitied against F54 athletes who are physically bigger and stronger and therefore more capable of throwing further distances. He is consequently at a distinct disadvantage.

Countries have raised strong objections to the system and some athletes have elected not to participate in their customary events given the inequity.

JPA President, Christopher Samuda, said that “the IPC will have to go back to the drawing board as this is untenable and discourages athletes to give of their best in a sport movement the vision of which is to enable para-athletes to achieve sporting excellence and inspire and excite the world.”

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October 25. 2015

Tough Going For Paralympians

The third day of competition was formidable for jamaica’s Paralympians as the world’s best came out in the Men’s F57 Discus and the Men’s T47 200m going for gold.

Tanto Campbell was the first athlete to take to the field in the Javelin but found the going tough and missed out in progressing to the final eight.

Then it was Jamaica’s silver medalist in the T47 400m Shane Hudson in the shorter distance in the 200m. He was out of blocks last in semi-final three and could not recover, placing fifth and therefore he failed to move onto the final.

“Tough, tough, tough but it was not altogether surprising as we knew that the competition would be very stiff. But we know what we have to work on for Rio and the work has already begun”

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October 24, 2015

Sylvia Puts Sixth

The going was tough for Sylvia Grant in the Women’s F56 Shot Put Final at the IPC’s Athletics World Championships in Doha as she placed sixth in an event won by

The event went late into the evening as world athletes battled for top honors or at least a podium appearance. Grant fought valiantly but was not able to better her competitors on the day.

“It was rough but I expected that it would be competitive. It’s back to the drawing board to prepare for Rio” the decorated Paralympian said.

With Grant ending her bid against a skyline backdrop veiled with sand pollution, the curtains fell on the third day of competition in Doha.

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October 23, 2015

Shane Silvers

It was a silvery afternoon for Paralympian Shane Hudson who, in the Men’s T47 400m at the IPC’s Ath;etics World Championships now underway in Doha, Qatar, ran his personal best of 48.89 seconds to be the heir apparent in the event.

It was the first time that a Jamaican was mining a medal in an ambulant event at the Championships and indeed at a signature International games and, for the pundits, a medal was always on the cards.

“Jamaica has another silver from me” was the patriotic response from a seasoned campaigner who won silver at the 2011 Guadalajara Athletics World Championships and also at the 2015 Toronto Para Pan American Games.

Coach Sinclair was evidently pleased but was also prospective; “Shane deserves every inch of that silver with his PR but we’ll be working for the gold in Rio, which is in his grasp”.

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October 22, 2015

Hudson Progresses To The 400m Final

The humidity in the Katara Amphitheater was somewhat evident at the start of the Men’s T47 400m semi-finals but was certainly not impressionable on Shane Hudson, who has progressed to the final of the event set for tomorrow afternoon.

Hudson, of the two Jamaican athletes in the event, was out of the blocks first in semi-final one and executed comfortably in lane three and came home first in 49.15 seconds and looks well poised for the top of the podium. Bascoe, who was in semi-final two, had, comparatively, his feet more on the gas in lane two as he came fourth in a PR of 51.64 and just missed the final as his time was the ninth fastest overall.

Coach Sinclair is guardedly optimistic for the final with Hudson: “I never count my chickens before they hatch but my charge is well conditioned and eager.”

Tomorrow will inevitably come in life scheme of things and when it dawns and matures Hudson will be going for gold at 4:24pm (Doha) or 8:24am local time.

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October 22, 2015

Tanto Sixth In Men’s Discuss

It would be a tough assignment for Jamaica’s Tanto Campbell in the Men’s F56 Discuss as he took the field in the morning as the first national competitor in the 2015 IPC Athletics World Championships in Doha, Qatar.

The 2015 Para Pan American silver medalist made it to the final round and was now up against the world’s best eight athletes for whom, unlike for him, discuss is a daily profession. He competed admirably and would have been a medalist had not been for a disputed last “no throw” The event was won by the well decorated and now legendary Leonardo Diaz of Cuba.

Tanto commented; ” I am disappointed that I did not medal for my country but not daunted. Rio will be a different ball game”.

Jamaica will continue its bid to enter the medal table with Shane Hudson and David Bascoe going in the Men’s T47 400m later in the evening.

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October 21, 2015

The IPC Athletics World Championships Opens

It was a flurry of fireworks and cultural expose in the Katara Amphitheater which signal the opening of the IPC Athletics World Championships in Doha, Qatar.

Jamaican Flag Bearer, Sheldon Cox, held the black, green and gold proudly on his maiden voyage and with the inspired knowledge that he is now part of history, as the first Jamaican to represent our country in the discipline of wheelchair racing.

Enumerable athletes from about ninety nations, paraded amidst pulsating rhythms all with the hope of bringing a coveted medal home and with it, personal glory. Cheers were raised and the Jamaican delegation got the customary thunderous applause which reminded all that globally Brand Jamaica is alive and well.

Chef de Mission, Edmond Jones, organized the ‘yard’ troopers and was please with the regiment which was resplendent in the national colours: “We always give a good show. It’s just part of who we are and have become – champions and world beaters”

For Tanto Campbell, a seasoned national representative, it was a walk down memory lane: “I have been here and have experienced many but it is always a new experience for me.”

Secretary General, Suzanne Harris-Henry, witnessed the pageantry and for her it was yet another World Championships with a “loyal and committed team”.

His Excellency, Sheikh Joaan bin Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, Presindent of the Qatar Olympic Committee, declared the Championships open amidst a memorable roar and applause.

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October 19, 2015

Team Jamaica Settles In

The final batch of the Jamaican contingent arrived in Doha on a relatively warm Sunday night on October 18 and renewed bonds with members who arrived the previous night.

The hotel was receptive and responded to a request of Chef de Mission, Edmund Jones, to extend the opening hours of the dining room to facilitate a late meal for our athletes.

The mood in the camp is positive and this is not surprising as most of the athletes have, on previous and numerous occasions, traveled to and participated together at international games.

Competing in Doha is a first for the Team Jamaica and from all indications there will be historic performances. The athletes continue to be focused and supportive of each other and are eager to do business.

Chef de Mission Jones had preliminary meetings with the meet organizers and reported that there were seamless and encouraging.

Brand Jamaica is strong in Doha and the Paralympic team, still basking in the success of the Toronto Para Pan American Games in August, is committed to strengthening the brand further with characteristic hospitality and courageous performances.

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October 18, 2015

Paralympians Doha Bound

Jamaica’s team to the 2015 IPC Athletics World Championships left the island on Friday and Saturday for Doha, Qatar where our athletes will, once more, make their bid for international glory.

Our Paralympians over the years have enjoyed commendable successes at the Championships as well as other i international events such as the Paralympics and the Para Pan American Games.

Chef de Mission for Jamaica’s team, Edmund Jones, is optimistic and believes that if the athletes perform as they should, medals will be in the cabinet “Our athletes are performers, seasoned and are not daunted. If they remain focused, the podium will be our best friend”

The team comprises seven athletes: Tanto Campbell (Discus and Javelin), Alphanso Cunningham (Discus and Javelin) Kevon Reid (Shot Putt), Shane Hudson (200m and 400m), David Bascoe (200m and 400m), Sylvia Grant (Discuss and Javelin) and newcomer to international games Sheldon Cox who makes history as the first Jamaican athlete to compete in wheelchair racing at this level.

The Suhaim Bin Hamad Stadium in Doha will be the venue for competition for around 1,300 athletes from 90 countries and 210 medal events: 119 for men and 91 for women athletes. It will also host the Opening and Closing Ceremonies on October 22 and 31 respectively.

JPA boss, Christopher Samuda, says that despite several challenges, “the journey was undertaken in the interest of our athletes whose commitment and love of country are more than admirable and who continue to give us world class performances”

The Championships is the last major event ahead of the 2016 Rio Paralympics and is a qualifying event for the next year’s games.