The Harry Jerome International Track Classic will be coming to Kamloops on June 13.
Kamloops Track and Field Club head coach and Olympic bronze medallist shot putter Dylan Armstrong has brokered a deal with event organizers to hold the circle-throws competitions in the Tournament Capital.
“Some athletes, definitely in B.C., are seeking opportunities at high-ranking meets that have points,” Armstrong said. "The 14-day Canadian quarantine is putting a huge damper on Canadian athletes.
“Being the crazy year it is, I felt Kamloops was in a position to reach out and try and get part of the Jerome.”
Armstrong emailed a friend, Doug Clement, president of the Achilles Track and Field Society, which organizes the Harry Jerome.
“We came to an agreement with their board that they would approve the circle throws as part of the Jerome in Kamloops due to Swangard Stadium not being necessarily able to host all the throwing events,” Armstrong said.
While circle throws — hammer, shot put and discus — action is underway in Kamloops on June 13, the other Harry Jerome events will be taking place on the Coast, at Swangard Stadium in Burnaby and UBC in Vancouver, Armstrong said.
The throws area in Kamloops is next to the Tournament Capital Centre and Hillside Stadium. Spectators will not be permitted unless COVID-19-related restrictions are relaxed in time for the event.
Armstrong mentioned two athletes in particular who will be aiming to qualify for the Olympic Summer Games in Tokyo — Agnes Esser (discus) and Adam Keenan (hammer throw).
Victoria-based Keenan used to train in Kamloops under throws coach Dr. Anatoliy Bondarchuk.
Ethan Katzberg and Ryan Jacklin, both of whom train under Armstrong at the KTFC, will be vying for national team spots at the junior world championships in August in Kenya, Armstrong said.
“I just think it’s great for the community,” Armstrong said. “Kamloops, as a city, has been excellent in supporting the track and field club and we’ve been pro-active in the country to move, as safely as we can, through the pandemic.”