Other Sports

Annual event provides a showcase for those on the fast track

Avril-Renee Montgomery, 4, and brother, Zachary, 7, like the way things are going at the Northwest Express Track Classic on Sunday.
Avril-Renee Montgomery, 4, and brother, Zachary, 7, like the way things are going at the Northwest Express Track Classic on Sunday.

The Northwest Express Track and Field Classic is well-known as an international event, attracting 2,300 runners from 13 countries.

But more importantly, the meet often becomes a family event.

Wife and husband Renee Montgomery and Carlinton Montgomery, along with son Zachary, 7, and daughter Avril, 4, can wholeheartedly attest to that.

The family, traveling from Jamaica to the three-day meet at Ansin Sports Complex in Miramar, was all smiles Sunday as the two youngsters competed in the final day of the 43rd running of the event.

Without hesitation and also with an extreme amount of confidence, Zachary was hardly forced when he blurted out, “I’m really good. I like winning.”

Asked if he would eventually be in the Olympics, Zachary — a runner at various distances — started counting on his fingers the number of years before he will be in the Olympics. See, we told you he was confident.

Little sister Avril, who runs the 50 meters, 100 meters and competes in the long jump, is a little more reserved than Zachary.

In fact, she just has fun competing and does away with the talking part of it.

No problem. Enter Zachary again to speak for her.

“She’s really fast,” Zachary confirmed. “Once,” he said, holding up one finger for emphasis, “she even beat me.”

Mom and dad were keeping track of Avril and Zachary on Sunday — not that easy, though, because remember, they are really fast.

Three runners strain approaching the finish line at the Northwest Express Track Meet's final day.
Three runners strain approaching the finish line at the Northwest Express Track Meet's final day. Bill Van Smith

Both parents were beaming about the kids and the competition.

“She just loves running,” Renee said of Avril. “She can beat some of the boys in the neighborhood. I am so proud of them. I’m over the top and beaming with pride.”

Mom readily admits the two children did not get their ability from her.

“I am not athletic at all,” Renee said. “But dad loves track. We watch it whenever we get a chance. My joy just comes from watching the kids run.”

Avril and Zachary attend and compete for the Saints Peter and Paul Preparatory School in Jamaica. And, of course, running — particularly sprints — is the landmark sport in Jamaica, a country that has produced numerous male and female sprinting standouts, including Usain Bolt.

In parting, young Zachary paid homage to Bolt by perfectly imitating the now-famous lightning bolt pose that Bolt performs after victories.

Why not?

Bolt is pretty darn good, and Zachary will quickly remind you so is he.

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