One of the fastest men in the world is coming to Coquitlam this summer, as Canada’s Andre de Grasse has confirmed he will race in the Harry Jerome International Track Classic on June 28.
A winner of three sprinting medals at the Olympics in Rio, de Grasse won both the 100 and 200-metre races at the Harry Jerome Classic at Swangard Stadium last year.
First held at Empire Stadium in Vancouver in 1964, the Harry Jerome Classic is Canada’s longest running international track meet.
This year’s event is moving to Perry Percy Stadium in Coquitlam because of potential plans to resurface the track at Swangard this year, where it has been held for the last 12 years. The annual track and field meet will return to Burnaby in 2018.
“Andre de Grasse was Canada’s outstanding male athlete in 2016 with his three medals at the Rio Olympics,” said Harry Jerome Classic chair Doug Clement in a media release. “He follows in the footsteps of Harry Jerome who is honoured in this competition for his Olympic medal and world records over 50 years ago. Andre’s appearance at the Jerome Classic is a once in a lifetime opportunity to witness this legend compete on Canadian soil.”
This is a great chance for locals to check out de Grasse, who many feel could take over as the world’s fastest man once Usain Bolt retires.
“I just try to have a lot of fun when I’m competing because I know how hard it is during training,” said De Grasse. “And there are always going to be ups and downs with sports, but I have to remember to always just be motivated because I know I inspire a lot of people and I want to show them it’s a fun sport. I want to lift up the sport, especially in Canada”
The 22-year-old from Markham, Ontario will use this track meet as a warm-up for the World Athletics Championships in London this August.