|Collie-Minns twins taken out of Jumper’s Inc.|
Guardian Sports Editor
Published: Sep 19, 2012
The two best junior jumpers in the country, the Collie-Minns twins, are cutting ties with Jumper’s Inc. and the coach they have known for the past five years, Peter Pratt.
According to Pratt, it was a parental decision that caused the separation. Be that as it may, he said that his only hope would be for the young men, Latario and Lathone, to get off to college in the United States and continue their promising athletic careers.
“I’m not really disappointed because I would have had to let them go for college in any event. Really and truly, I was hoping that they would have gotten sorted out for this semester, but they’re still here. Hopefully, they’ll get in a good school, even if it’s just a junior college, for January. I have done what I could with them and brought them as far as I can in this short period of time. I just want them to get under the training of a good college coach so that they could maximize their potential as they continue to develop.”
Under Pratt, the twins have excelled not just locally and regionally, but internationally as well. They have reached the top of the world stage in their age group, finishing first and third in the triple jump at the 2011 World Youth Championships, in Lille, France. Latario won the gold with a best leap of 16.06 meters (m) - 52’ 8-1/4” - and Lathone settled for the bronze medal, with a best leap of 15.51m (50’ 10-3/4”). The twins had exceptional years. They won gold and silver at CARIFTA coming off a year in which they won gold and bronze at the World Youth. At the World Junior Championships, in Barcelona, Spain, this year, Lathone failed to make the final as he struggled to get off a good jump, but Latario won the bronze medal, with a best leap of 16.37m (53’ 8-1/2”). Latario and Lathone have personal best jumps of 16.64m (54’ 7-1/4”) and 16.06m respectively.
“Well, they’re basically on their own now - hopefully that will change in January,” said Pratt. “I wasn’t given a reason for them leaving Jumper’s Inc. I don’t have anything against them because it was a parental decision.
I haven’t spoken to them much because they are difficult to reach, but it’s their decision so I just hope that it works out for them. Someone has been advising their parents. I just hope that they get a good education. I am not aware of their plans, but they have learnt enough to carry them to the next level so I just wish them well.”
The twins’ parents were unavailable for comment yesterday, but Guardian Sports was able to reach World Youth Champion Latario who spoke briefly but candidly on the matter.
“We didn’t leave the club, our parents decided to take us out,” he said. “We’re trying to get off to college in January. We’re thankful for the coaching from Mr. Pratt. We just want to go off to college right now, and do well in academics first of all, and then in the triple jump secondly.”
Latario and Lathone graduated from Teleos Christian Academy this past June. The twins had numerous offers for junior colleges in the United States, but one at the top of the list for January, is Iowa Central Community College in Fort Dodge, Iowa.
Pratt, who personally set up five visitations for the twins from junior college coaches, said that Jumper’s Inc. will continue to focus on the youngsters in the program, and will continue to produce top talent in the country. National record holder in the men’s triple jump, ‘Superman’ Leevan Sands, who just returned home on Monday, came up under Pratt and Jumper’s Inc.