The Speed Academy turns in top times

Personal bests and podium finishes for sprinters, jumpers

TORONTO -- It was another weekend of incredible performances by The Speed Academy athletes at York University.

The midget and youth age groups began the weekend by winning a total of seven medals at the Royal Canadian Legion provincial championships. Mariam Abdul-Rashid led the way for the girls, winning gold in the 60m and 200m. Her winning time of 7.73 in the 60m was a personal best. She is currently ranked No. 1 in the province in the midget girls' division for 60m, 200m, 300m, 400m and 600m.

On the boys' side, it was Tacuma Anderson-Richards who led the way with two personal best performances. He won the youth boys' triple jump with a leap of 14.31m. Then in high jump he cleared a height of 2.03m. These performances put him atop the national youth ranking in both events.

Myles Williams and Joshua Cunningham led the way on the oval track taking home silver and bronze medals in the youth boys' 400m. Both boys raced to personal best performances of 51.14 and 51.48 respectively. Cunningham also snatched a bronze medal in the 200m. Yazin Joseph hurdled to a bronze-medal finish in the youth boys' 60 metre hurdles. He ran a personal best of 8.43 in the preliminary round. Other notable performances came from: Austin Marchese, who lowered his personal best to 7.32 over 60 metres; Ashton Hyde raced to personal best performances in the 400m and 800m, with times of 53.0 and 2:01.9 respectively; newcomer Amara Ehirim turned in a solid performance in the 400m, finishing seventh with a time of 52.17; Cameron Rodrigues also clocked in with a personal best time of 54.34 in the 400m.

The following day, The Speed Academy junior boys took to the track at the Ontario combined events championships, competing against some of Canada's top sprinters. Brandon Bobb and Wesley Best battled to fourth- and fifth-place finishes in the open men's 60-metre sprint. Best broke the tape in a personal best time of 6.87, just a wink ahead of Bobb, who also clocked in with the same time. Shaquan Williams and Dillando Allotey chased the Canadian 400m champion Tremaine Harris to fourth and sixth finishes in the 400m with personal best times of 51.21 and 52.38 respectively.

Tony Sharpe helps score scholarships for track and field stars

tony sharpe

Sharpe, the former Canadian Olympian, runs the Speed Academy, a developmental track and field club in Pickering, which has helped dozens of athletes get NCAA scholarships.

The club was founded in 2006 and Sharpe left his corporate account manager’s job at Bell to track athletes full-time a few years later.

“I’m a full-time coach, you know, not something people do often in Canada,” says Sharpe, 59, adding about 50 Speed Academy athletes have received scholarships.