Serena Cole, Tina Clayton, Kerrica Hill and Tia Clayton joined forces to win the gold medal in a record time at the World U20 Championships held in Cali, Colombia, on August 5 last year, clocking a blistering 42.59 seconds to take home the title.
The extraordinary feat has recently received approval from the world governing body. Compared with the previous world U20 championship record, the team’s performance was 35 hundredths of a second faster than the time set in Nairobi in 2021.
Earlier in 2022, a similar quartet, but with Brianna Lyston on the third leg instead of Kerrica Hill, had clocked a slightly quicker 42.58 at the Carifta games, but the time was not approved. According to Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCo), the World U20 Champion for the 100m, Tina Clayton, was not tested, so the world governing body of the sport refused to ratify the record-breaking performance over that distance.
That news broke in mid-2022, and many fans of track and field were left furious and extremely disappointed, not so by the decision of the world governing to ratify the incredible feat but by the mishandling of the situation by the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO).
JADCo made the sole decision, without the knowledge of JAAA and the NACAC’s Anti-Doping Delegate, not to test the athlete as per JADCo standards. As a result, this was in direct contradiction with what had been instructed by the JAAA both orally and in writing.
So, the news of the U20 woman’s team record becoming official has brought great relief to many fans of the sport and the talented ladies who have put in the hard work.