Five is the lucky number at Green Mile; Harrikissoon makes it 5 straight while Republic Bank women ‘walk’ away from the competition
A short downpour just after four yesterday afternoon seemingly did little to deter the participants of the CariFin Games’ Green Mile event, as hundreds dashed away their formal attire to vie for top honours inside the Sand Track of the Queen’s Park Savannah.
The Green Mile was the second event of this year’s CariFin games –with the One Lap Savannah event running off two weeks ago-. By the time the dust had settled, two male competitors were basking in back-to-back wins while there was a sweeping victory for one financial institution in the female category.
Many of the competitors from the various institutions went through their final paces and stretches before things got underway, while others preferred to have a short chit-chat before their brisk run or a walk. The goal still remained for most though, and that was getting across the finish line first, or in a good time at least!
If any male competitors had a 25th anniversary surprise planned for Deodath Harrikissoon or Abijah Phillip, then those plans were quickly thwarted, as both men showed great form and speed en route to their respective victories. For Harrikissoon, it was extra special, as he marked the 25th anniversary of the CariFin Games with his fifth consecutive triumph in a ‘walking’ event. The evergreen Harrikissoon proved a bit too sharp for the chasing pack as he briskly walked to the finish line in a time of 9:54. Second-placed Jade Camps and third-placed Clement Jubrajsingh desperately tried to keep up with Harrikissoon, but the First Citizens Bank employee had a date with destiny. Jubrajsingh and Camps have been worthy opponents for Harrikissoon in the past, but yesterday the latter got the edge.
With walking form like that, competitors might be wondering if Harrikissoon nabs some extra practice by sleepwalking at night.
Phillip, a Republic Bank employee, impressively brushed aside the efforts of his challengers as he sped to the line in a winning time of 5:30. Phillip was closely followed by First Citizens’ Keston Gabriel, who finished in a time of 5:32, while Guardian Group’s Kris Deonanan rounded off the top three with a time of 5:39. Phillip is now building up some momentum following his One Lap Savannah win, and should be the favourite for the Chancellor Hill run as well.
Scotiabank’s Laverne Evelyn was not to be outdone on the women’s side of things, as she finished her Green Mile run in a time of 6:37. Evelyn went one better than her One Lap Savannah finish and completed the race 24th overall. Guardian Group’s Jileta Candace Landeau finished second in a time of 6:45, while Chelsea-Anne Phillip of Central Bank finished third in a time of 6:48.
Getting back to the topic of walking, the female staff at Republic Bank Limited may have been paying particular attention to Harrikissoon’s technique over the years, as their group remarkably teamed up to grab the first five spots in the women’s walking race. Not one, not two, but five.
Aliya Henry was the trendsetter for the Republic women yesterday. Henry strode over the line in a time of 10:51, just under a minute behind Harrikissoon, and good enough for eight overall in the ‘walking’ event. Tessa Weekes quickly followed her Republic teammate with a time of 10:53, while Keshona George, Christine Villafana and La Toya George rounded off an impressive top five sweep for Republic.
The clean sweep by the women in the ‘walking’ event, coupled with another Phillip victory, set the stage for a boisterous chant from the Republic Bank crew at the end of the day’s activities.
The Republic team will surely be looking to take their momentum up Chancellor Hill, while their bosses will hope that the female staff doesn’t threaten a ‘walkout’ anytime soon.