Ah Champs! Correctly titled the Boys and Girls’ Athletic Championships, it is the spectacle that unfolds at the National Stadium each year with thousands of cheering fans, from the stands, encouraging athletes from their favourite high school.
Starting in 1910, Champs showcases students displaying track and field talents as they compete to outperform rivals to earn points for their schools, which seek to garner enough, to be crowned respective boys and girls winners.
With the fans shouting and encouraging, the athletes seek to garner points from their placing in the finals and the aim also is to sparkle for themselves in their respective events, which can lead to advancement in the sport or getting a scholarship to university.
The fans bring a vibe that makes the event the top high school track and field extravaganza in the world, this is especially on Saturday when the stadium is at capacity and the merriment is at fever pitch.
The COVID-19 pandemic, however, halted the support the athletes got from the stands from the supporters as the guidelines that the government implemented to stop the spread on the island, included not having gatherings.
Champs was cancelled totally in 2020 because of the pandemic and last year, only 5,000 were allowed in the grandstands. This year, however, with the lifting of the guidelines, the fans are back and Loop News went to the National Stadium on Friday to get their views for this week’s Let’s Talk: What’s the best part about being back in the stadium for Champs.