Dozens of boys and girls dashed down historic King St. in Christiansted at sunset on Friday to kick-off Triathlon Jump-up. Malique Smith (13 years old) of the St. Croix Track Club led the way with a race record 1 minute and 18 seconds over a distance of a 510 meters (that comes out to a 3:57 mile pace!). The versatile Smith, the top youth middle distance runner in the V.I., just returned earlier in the week from Jamaica where he competed in the CARIFTA Junior Championships in track and field for the first time. In Friday’s race, the next three finishers all ran under 1:30 as the battle between Rodney Griffin 2nd in 1:26 of the SCTC and Adriel Sanes 3rd in 1:26 of the Hounds and Foxes Track Club and Nyhne Daniel 4th 1:28 of SCTC came down to the wire.
Nya Jack of the Hounds and Foxes led the way for the girls with a time of 1:31 as she edged close to the race record and finished 5th overall in the exciting race. Stephanie Matthew of the St. Croix Track Club was 2nd in 1:37; Annika Benders of SCTC was 3rd in 1:38.
Mikaela Smith 1:40 and Valence Modeste 1:40, both nine years old and with the St. Croix Track Club, were the leaders of respective girls and boys under 10 age-groupers. They finished 10th and 11th overall.
1] Just before the start of the race at Sunday Market Square (AKA Times Square), the youngsters were treated with a surprise appearance of two of the world’s top triathletes: Miranda Carfrae, the 2010 Ford Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii and Catriona Morrison the 2010 winner of the St. Croix Ironman 70.3 Triathlon. They led the group with a warm-up drill and shared a few pointers on competing. They will compete in Sunday’s St. Croix Ironman 70.3.
2] Since the beginning of the big triathlon on St. Croix in 1988 when it was The America’s Paradise Triathlon, featured pre-triathlon events have given local athletes the chance to run, bike and swim with the visiting pro triathletes and the many age-groupers anxious to take a shot at conquering St. Croix’s Beauty and the Beast. One of the two featured events is the Children Run Christiansted. Initially this run down Christiansted’s historic King St., was known as the King St. Dash and was a 600m foot race from the Times Square area to the Scale House which is where the triathlon finishes. In its 13th year, it is now known as the Children Run Christiansted, a race over 510m for boys and girls 13 and under. The other featured event is the Paradise 5K, which is run on Thursday’s of triathlon week at the Buccaneer Resort.
3] The 13th Annual Children Run Christiansted was sponsored by: Massive Promotions and Consultants; Budget Car Rental and Senator Craig Barshinger. The event was organized by The Virgin Islands Pace Runners, sanctioned by the Virgin Islands Track and Field Federation, and facilitated by the National Park Service. Timing and scoring of the race was by: V.I.Pace Runners/Project St.Croix/Sportstats
4] The appearance of Miranda Carfrae and Catriona Morrison was coordinated by Barbara Dean organizer of the Kids Triathlon/event series with the Virgin Islands Triathlon Federation
5] Each participant won a medal and a race certificate.