Princess Joy Griffey
This article has been withheld for a while, so now its essentially three articles merged into one.
Princess Joy Griffey 2011
Following on from our original story on Eric Cray, the Fil-Heritage program continues this time backtracking back to 2011 When Filipino born, Washington Based sprinter Princess Joy Griffey then 24 first burst onto the scene by winning the 200m Dash at the 2011 PNG in her hometown of Bacolod despite being heavily food poisoned.
In an earlier interview, it was established Princess Joy had met one of her bucket goals to win a national championship. Princess Joy took the win at the national games in the 200 in 25.24, beating a national training pool athlete. She was unable to line up in the 100 as she was still recovering from food poisoning and needed extra time to recuperate.
It was after the 2011 PNG, that Princess Joy ended up off the list for the SEA Games despite having run below the bronze medal standard of 11.75 (2009), Despite having run 11.65 within the qualifying period PJ was not selected by the PATAFA to run at the 2011 SEA Games. As the favorite Vu Thi Huong of Vietnam 2005, 2007,2009 Champion was injured and took bronze the surprise winner was Serafi Unani of Indonesia in 11.69.
This is where I came on the scene seeking an answer as to why Princess Joy had not been included in the lineup. Would not rest until Princess Joy was included in the SEA Games lineup and not allow this sort of thing to happen in the future as it upset the balance of fair selection.
During these dark hours, there were few people who believed in Princess Joy Griffey after she had been disregarded. Aaron Blake her high school coach was one of them, and I also continued to push and try and persuade her to put this aside and continue to pursue her dream of running for the Olympics.
Princess Joy Griffey 2013 SEA Games
I had invited Princess Joy Griffey to join us in Dumaguete at the 2012 PNG, we were to attempt to qualify for the relay team in the 4×400. Her teammates with Hyper sports were to be Fil-American sprinter Krizia Leah Apelar, and local sprinters Keizel Pedrina and Lorna Olarita. It was a reasonable expectation we would break the Philippine Record in this event.
I had made several Skype calls and messages to Griffey who was committed to joining. Griffey did go to the Philippines however as she was still traumatized by the events of the previous year and she now had problems with Vertigo. Vertigo is a painful symptom that involves loud buzzing and ringing in the ears which can be extremely draining making an individual tired and very prone to headaches. Griffey due to health and emotional reasons at the time ended up just visiting her relatives in Bacolod.
In fact from 2011 after non-selection to SEA Games to 2013 August Griffey was officially retired. Several Skype conversations and messages were met with “Sorry I’m done”. But unfortunately for her Coach, Aaron Blake and I were not people who take ‘No’ as a long-term answer. So we kept trying. Griffey luck actually changed a bit as I became the research assistant to Commissioner Jolly Gomez in the PSC, which ensured I was in a better position to make sure she received fair treatment this time if she hit the qualifying for 2013 SEA Games.
Our efforts were rewarded when in August 2013 Princess returned to Coach Aaron and ran her first few races which happened to be over 200m at that stage. Griffey self-funded herself over to the Thai Open in September, Coach Aaron was unable to join on that occasion. So it was up to me to take care of her for this meet. The PSC supplied PATAFA a generous budget of 3 million pesos for this trip, the surplus funds of their budget.
It was the largest contingent ever assembled in September 2013 no fewer than 80 athletes, coaches made the journey as they had been doing for the last 10 years to Thammasat University in Rangsit Province Thailand. It was about 1-2 hours north of Bangkok.
Griffey arrived early and waited for us in the dorm rooms of the University. She had lost quite a bit of muscle mass from when she was running before. Griffey was down for the 100 and 4×100. I had pushed for the inclusion of a 4×100 with PATAFA which involved Khay Santos, Hanelyn Loquinto and Jenny Rose Rosales myself and coach Joseph Sy looked after the relay. The girls ended up with Bronze in the 4×100 as Jenny got too excited and Hanelyn had to call for her to slow down. Princess ran the second leg and passed the baton to Hanelyn in 2nd position behind the Thai’s.
We ended up bronze in 46.61 seconds, which was then the fastest time ran in the last 10 years by a women’s 4×100. In the 100m Dash Princess ended up second in her heat in 12.41 behind Tassaporn Wanakit of Thailand and moved through to the finals. However, she had severe hamstring issues. I took her first to Dagmil and then to Nixon Mas to get a massage and made sure she was continually applying ice which was very hard to find.
I also supervised her in the warm-up to make sure she had assisted stretching and timed each phase of the warm-up well. In the finals, very few people in the team came to actually watch her. Her best friends Felyn Dolloso and Jessa Mangsat were there of course. Katherine Santos had qualified but chose not to run. As they took out of the blocks Griffey was slower than her usual start and was coming last of the 7 until the last 20-30m where she started piling on that strong upper body strength running her way up to 4th.
2003 SEA Games Champion Nongnuch Klomdee won in 11.82, from Zulkifili 12.01 of Malaysia, and Wanakit 12.03, Griffey timed a respectable 12.10 to finish fourth against some of the strongest runners in South East Asia.
Thailand had served as the last qualifying meet for PATAFA. Griffey had not qualified in the 100 individual as it required the time of 11.75. As she had only been running for a short period of time she simply just ran out of time. The appeal now was for the Women’s 4×100 team which required time of 45.12. The logic was to bring in the two 15-year-old Richardson sisters Kayla and Kyla in place of Loquinto and Rosales for the relay. Which would have reduced the time to around 45.5 or faster? However, it was deemed by PSC and PATAFA too far from the standard so the relay girls were removed from the final lineup.
Phi Athletic Round-Up – March 2014 – Week 2 – Griffey opens in the pouring rain
Bacolod born Princess Joy Griffey opened the 2014 outdoor season with 11.93. While on a rain-soaked track at the Lutheran Pacific University invitational in Washington. Also running into a slight headwind the 26-year-old was well clear. Yet taking the 100m easily into heavy rain with second a well-beaten 12.89. While albeit far from her 2009 Personal best of 11.58. And consequently even her 11.75 National Junior record she continues to claw herself back into shape.
Hence the 26-year-old who made a come back last September. While from two years out of the sport after having been excluded from the 2011 SEA Games selection. Finished fourth in the finals of the Thailand Open in a time of 12.10. However, Griffey ran out of time to qualify for the 2013 SEA Games. With Thailand being the cut off for selection in Athletics. Last year she was ranked fourth behind the Richardson Twins (11.79 & 11.93) and Zion Corrales-Nelson (12.01).
Starting with a brilliant indoor season. Griffey looks sure to be on track to winning the 100 and possibly the 200m at the Philippine National Games.
Phi Athletic Roundup -March 2014- Week 3- Griffey hits SEA Games Bronze Standard
Fil-Heritage Sprinter Princess Joy Griffey improved on her performance of 11.93 last weekend. With a season leading 11.88. The 26-year-old won the Hub City Classic in Washington. The time was below the 11.91 Bronze medal place at the 2013 SEA Games. Griffey missed out on the 2011 SEA Games due to not being nominated by the PATAFA. And 2013 SEA Games as ran out of time to qualify. The performance puts her in the hot seat for around a top-three spot at the 2015 SEA Games. Griffey has a personal best of 11.58s.
At Thailand, Open Griffey finished fourth behind Thai’s 34-year-old Nongnuch Klomdee 11.82s and in third was Tassaporn Wanakit 12.03s. They would go on to silver and bronze in 11.85s and 11.91s at the SEA Games 3 months later in Myanmar.
One Last Try 2015 SEA Games
2014 would end up as the best year since College days for Griffey. She also broke her 200m PB from 2007, at the age of 27 with a run of 23.93 leading up to the 2014 National Games and consistently ran under 12 seconds.
I encouraged her to join the now well established 2014 National Games in June of 2014 in Manila. This time Griffey arrived accompanied by coach Aaron Blake and her good friend Heather Easling. Griffey joined the Philippine Airforce Team (I was managing) and won the 100m into a strong headwind of 12.02 against her relay partner Hanelyn Loquinto. Griffey had timed 11.6 hand-timed in heats. She also went onto win the 200m in a hand-timed 23.8, over 3 seconds clear of Karissa Lopez of Olongopo 26.9.
Griffey made the top 5 standards for the 2014 Asian Games in the 200m but again was not included by the association.
These times established a solid campaign for Griffey for the 2015 SEA Games. With the qualifying for the 2015 June Games in Singapore starting in December of 2013.
Her best times of 11.62 and 23.93 were under the qualifying marks of 11.91 and 24.13. In fact, they were both silver medal standards.
Highly motivated after her qualification times and her two gold medals at nationals Griffey set her sites on preparing for the 2015 SEA Games.
In 2015 during her US Campaign Griffey ran 11.71 and 24.48 leading upto SEA Games. Times had changed she now was ranked behind Kayla Richardson (11.65) in the 100 and Richardson (23.79) and Zion Nelson (24.12) leading up to the SEA Games.
Griffey had held the Philippine Junior Record with 11.75 in the 100m from 2004 until 2015, she had broken the mark of De Vega 11.76. Kayla Richardson had broken the record at the CIF meet in California.
As Nelson was not available due to focusing on Basketball at the time. Griffey was given spots for 100, 200, 4×100 at the 2015 SEA Games.
I like to think of me being in the PSC really helped Griffey get in, but she was at the end of the day selected on her own merits as her performances did the talking. We just ensured 2011 didn’t happen again. My mission to get Griffey to the SEA Games was fulfilled when she was finalized in the 2015 selection in Singapore.
At the SEA Games Griffey ran well in the heats and timed 11.83. Griffey was the oldest competitor by then at 28 in the sprint events. With the retirement of Klomdee and Vu. Griffey finished fifth in the 100 Meters in 12.00, her hamstrings had played up. The SEA Games also saw the decade-long reign of Griffey as the Philippines most dominant female sprinter come to an end, when the torch was passed to the 17-year-old Kayla Richardson took the SEA Games title in a time of 11.76, narrowly beating Tassaporn Wanakit of Thailand who was given the same time.
She withdrew from the 200 Meter dash and focused on the 4×100. While teaming up with Khay Santos and Richardson sisters she ran the second leg. She ran a brilliant second leg moving the team from fourth to the second position by the third change. Unfortunately, Kyla Richardson pulled her hamstring and Kayla brought us home last. Despite losing around nearly a second due to Kyla hamstring, the time of 45.84 was the third-fastest time ever ran by a relay team from the Philippines.
Princess Joy is now a high school coach at Tahoma. A recent article said she was planning on moving to the 400m Dash. She will be 30 years old when the 2017 SEA Games comes around in Malaysia.
Princess Joy Griffey with a Personal Best of 11.58 is the second fastest Filipina of All Time Perhaps the best chance for the Fil Foreign athletics team is Princess Joy Griffey of Washington State University. The speedy Filipina was born in Bacolod in 1987 and spent her childhood in Paglaum Village nearby as well as many other villages, she is a second-generation sprinter. Her mother Leah Nolido was a 12.3et 100m runner (ran 11.9ht) and represented the Philippines in the Asian Youth and ASEAN School Games. Nolido used to run against Lydia De Vega Mercado.
23-year-old Griffey who stands at 5’4, unofficially holds the Philippine Junior Record having recorded 11.75s as a 17-year-old at the US Junior Olympics in 2004 and placed 3rd! (which is faster than the 11.76s time recorded by Lydia at the Asian Games 1982 in New Delhi). Princess Joy is second on the all-time list behind Lydia with a personal best of 11.58 seconds.
She is currently the fastest Filipina in the world with an 11.65 second run in 2010. She consistently runs sub 12 seconds electronics for the 100m and never has time in the 12-second range. Her 200m is 24.00 officially but she has run a wind-aided 23.90 and also timed 55.96 for the 400m.
Griffey is intending to race at the Philippine National Open this year and the Grand Prix series in a build-up to SEA Games. Her times in the 100 and 200 from last season would see her place silver and bronze in those events behind Vu Thi Thuong of Vietnam (2005, 2007, 2009 100m Champion at SEA Games). She is a vital cog for the Women’s 4×100 and 4×400 team at SEA Games having split 53.5 in a 4×4 relay before.
For Philippine Athletics, her presence is sure to help give a wake up call to women’s track and field in Philippine Track and Field with the last athlete to win a medal at the SEA Games in the 100 was bronze from the now-retired Lerma Buluitan Gabito (specialist long jumper).
I caught up with Princess Joy Griffey on Facebook, the down to earth sprinter is very passionate about the sport and very proud to be part of a great sporting legacy.
PA: Can you tell us a little bit about your school Washington State and
what your studying and perhaps your plans after you graduate?
PJ: Washington State University is located in Pullman, WA. Its a really small town and it’s mostly farmlands. I majored in Criminal Justice and minored in Political Science and Sociology. I took up Criminal Justice because I enjoy reading about laws and criminal theories and etc. After I graduate I want to work for the federal government but I want to run for the Philippines first.
PA: How often do you compete and when is the competitive season in the US? Tell us
about the indoor track as we do not have this in the
.PJ: start competing from January to June. Indoor tracks are somewhat difficult to run on. Some tracks can only be 200m long, either flat or banked. Some is 300m long and only flat. One bad thing is that long-distance runs feel like forever. But the good things are: I would race 60m only instead of 100m and it’s inside so there is no complaining about the weather.
PA: Could you tell us about how a typical training week would go?
PJ: I have a new training program after I left college. I would usually run 6 times a week and lift 3 times a week. Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday are mostly long sprint run and some days are short sprints. Tuesdays and Fridays are like my recovery runs. Right now it’s difficult because my coach is in California and I’m in Washington but it’s not a problem. The only thing is to work on my technique.
PA: Next question I guess is in regards to nutrition and recovery Do you have a special diet? or do you just eat whatever? do you take supplements? if so which ones?
PJ: Well…I eat a lot of rice. haha. I actually eat whatever that is healthy. I don’t really have a special diet, like a routine. I take vitamins and usually drink chocolate milk after workouts. On weekends I try to get junked foods.
PA: By Chocolate milk do you mean whey protein?
PJ: No chocolate milk. I don’t drink Whey Protein
PJ: lol I used to drink this Gatorade recovery drinks and it had the same stuff as chocolate milk in our weight room they give us chocolate milk.
PA: I heard you are very fond of Filipino food in particular Lumpia?
PJ: lol yeah. I go crazy for them. I like Puchero.
PA: I guess you will feel right at home in the Philippines then.
PA: Ok next these are the questions from Yell Carreon the Pinoy Miler himself which he gave me to ask.
PA: Among your medals so far, what’s the one closest to your heart?
PJ: ok hmmm that one is difficult.
PJ: I think my first state championship medal in High School. I was only a sophomore competing with seniors. That win told me I could be good and hopefully take it to the next level.
PA: Who are your greatest influences in Athletics?
PJ: Gail Devers.
PA: What prompted you to take up the sports?
PJ: When I saw the 1996 Olympics and when my teacher in elementary school asked me to
run for the school. Also, I think it was in my blood. My mom ran for the Philippines and i
want to follow in her footsteps.
PA: What’s your personal goal as far as athletics is concerned? It can be a PR mark, medal or title.
PJ: Hopefully win a Philippine National championship and place at SEA Games.
PA: Ok PJ thanks very much for your time and all the best in your leadup to the National Open. Maybe the team of pinoymiler will catch up with you then.
Ladies and gentlemen Princess Joy Griffey!
Both photos credited to Princess Joy Griffey
Fil-Heritage Report/ Feb 17
2014 PNG 100/200m Womens Champion Princess Joy Griffey who has hit the SEA Games Silver medal criteria in the 100,200 clocked a seasons best of 7.54. Griffey dead-heated behind Merissa Mergetts with an equal time of 7.54.
Griffey improved on her time 2 weeks ago of 7.56. Her PB is 7.47 and the Phi National Record is 7.37 held by Lydia De Vega.
Fil-Heritage athletes kick start season
The Top Womens Filipina Sprinter Princess Joy Griffey, 27 in the 100 and 200m Dash last year (both SEA Games silver medal standards) began her season at the University of Washington Preview in Seattle in the 60m with 7.64 and 7.65 outside her personal best of 7.47. The Philippine Record in this event held by Lydia De Vega Mercado in 7.37.
Griffey who is the PNG Champion, is struggling to come up with funds to participate at the National Open in March.
January 2015 SEA Games Qualifiers at it again
SEA Games 100, 200 qualifier Princess Joy Griffey won the B Race of the Washington University Invite, improving on her 7.64 clockings, boosting the early season showing of female sprinters to go with her relay teammate Kath Santos.
Andrew is an ATFS Statiscian in Athletics with a wide range of knowledge in measurable sports. He has worked as a PSC Consultant and Research Assistant from 2013-2015, Consultant and Sprint Coach at Zamboanga Sports Academy from 2015-2017. And is current editor and chief of Pinoyathletics.info, and has recently done consultancy work for Ayala Corp evaluating the Track and Field Program. Currently, he is coaches Sprints, Middle and Jump events he is working towards his Level 3 Athletics Australia Coaching Certification in Sprints and Hurdles.
He can be contacted on [email protected]