Record breaker: Scott Clarke, right, was part of the record breaking 4x100 relay team at the World Youth Championships. He is pictured here receiving the baton from Bruce Degrilla. *Photo supplied
Record breaker: Scott Clarke, right, was part of the record breaking 4x100 relay team at the World Youth Championships. He is pictured here receiving the baton from Bruce Degrilla. *Photo supplied

WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 16: Scott Clarke didn’t set out to be a track and field standout — his first love was football.

The Saltus student has given up ‘the beautiful game’ so he can concentrate on getting stronger and faster every year.

He knows moving up from the Under-17s to the Under-20s will make even qualifying for the Bermuda Carifta team tough, but he’s determined to train hard and give it his best shot. Clarke said he “needs to step it up” so he can qualify to represent the island at the April Games.

He spoke with Don Burgess about Carifta and representing Bermuda internationally.


What got you into track and field?

I was playing football and I spoke with a coach and he said I’d get real big, strong and fast playing football. I didn’t get that much bigger, but I did get a lot faster.

Even though I’ve been doing track and field just two years, I think I started doing it at the right time. I’ve been real lucky and been able to go to a lot of track meets.

What was Carifta like for you last year?

I was selected but I had to pull out because of injury. It was pretty disappointing because injuries kept coming, but looking at the long-term view it was better for me.

Why was that?

I had other track meets that summer and it was good that I didn’t risk getting injured again. I decided that it was better to wait.

What other meets did you have?

I got to go to the Commonwealth Games, the Pan Am Juniors and the World Youth Championships in France so it all worked out.

Which of those meets meant the most to you and why?

The World Youths because it was a nice big stadium with a big track. It was interesting to meet people from all over the world and people who spoke different languages. It made it interesting trying to communicate. It was a great experience and I was able to get a new PB (personal best) when I was out there and we set a national record in the 4x100 relay.

How did that make it easier to compete in the Commonwealth and Pan Ams after that?

That helped me get the experience because that was my first big track meet. I felt good going into it as I was coming off injury, then I performed well. The next meet was Pan Ams and that was a lot more competitive because the other athletes were about 20-years-old. I didn’t do that bad and that really set me up for Commonwealth, where I got to perform my best.

How has that help prepare you for next year?

It’s actually helped me get stronger because I’ve trained all summer because of the big meets.

What does it mean for you to have Carifta in Bermuda?

I like it because it let’s my whole family and my friends see what I am doing. Most of the time, when I’m away, not everyone can see me, but now I can showcase my talent for my country.

Are you looking to do track at university?

I’ve had an offer from a college already to bring me in and put me on scholarship.

Are you still doing football?

I tried doing both my first season but then I realized how hard it was to juggle them because I couldn’t train too much for football when I was doing track. If I trained hard for football, then I was missing out on rest times for track. I started focusing solely on track the next season and I was happy with that.

What do you want to do with your running ability?

Initially I was looking at getting a scholarship for college. Now it’s personal challenge – every year I want to get better and stronger. My ultimate goal is to go to the Olympics one day.

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