The Glasgow 2014 Queen’s Baton relays through the Virgin Islands by land and sea

Queen's Baton Relay - A.O. Shirley TrackTortola, British Virgin Islands, April 7, 2014 – The Glasgow 2014 Queen’s Baton and traveling team departed for Jamaica on the morning of Saturday, April 5 following a successful two-day tour of Tortola, Jost Van Dyke, and Virgin Gorda.

The Queen’s Baton Relay is the precursor to the Commonwealth Games held every four years and is on its journey to 71 Commonwealth nations and Overseas Territories. The BVI was the 53rd country to be visited. The baton contains a message from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to the Commonwealth Game athletes.

The tour of the territory was launched on Thursday, April 3 when the baton was officially presented to the people of the VI at an opening ceremony held at the Noel Lloyd Positive Action Movement Park. The park thronged with people of all ages and nationalities in a true representation of the cultural mix that makes up the population of the islands.

The baton made its entrance in the hands of Mrs. Fortuna Belrose, Regional Vice-President of the Commonwealth Games Federation. A procession of past Commonwealth Games participants, which included Steve Augustine, Karl Scatliffe, Dion Stoutt, Joe Chapman, Ralston Henry, and Roger Mathavious, followed behind.

Welcome remarks were shared by Master of Ceremonies, Mr. Lloyd Black, Secretary General of the BVIOC, Governor Boyd McCleary, Acting Premier, Dr. the Hon. Kedrick D. Pickering, Mrs. Fortuna Belrose, Mr. Ephraim Penn, President of the BVIOC, the Hon. Myron Walwyn, Minister for Education, Culture and Sports, Mr. Louis Rosa, QBR Team Leader, and Mr. Rey O’Neal.

Steve Augustine was the first baton bearer for the territory and received the baton from Hon. Myron Walwyn to start the relay through communities in the VI in a succession of passes to baton bearers and participants.

Queen's Baton Relay - Cane Garden Bay

National federation members for Rugby, Athletics, Volleyball, Squash, Triathlon, Skiing, Sailing, Football, Softball, Taekwondo, Tennis, and Swimming, Special Olympics, government departments, businesses, service clubs and the general public joined in the relays as runners, swimmers, sailors, and cyclists.

A small BBC crew led by presenter Mark Beaumont accompanied the QBR team in Tortola and conducted interviews with some of the territory’s athletes including track runner Karene King, squash player Joe Chapman, and the BVI Swimming Federation.

Relays and activities through the communities

The baton relay passed through Road Town, Lower Estate, with a lap at the A. O. Shirley Ground. The relay then ran through Capoon’s Bay, Apple Bay, Carrot Bay, and Cane Garden Bay before the baton and QBR team were transported by the RVIPF Police launch to Great Harbour in Jost Van Dyke, and to the BVI Spring Regatta at Nanny Cay.

Governor Boyd McCleary and Mrs. McCleary hosted a reception for the QBR team at Government House that evening. The BVIOC recognised specially invited guest, Commonwealth Games squash gold medalist, Joe Kneipp and also congratulated 11 year old, Keshawn Carey from First Impressions Primary School, as the winner of a Facebook BVIOC Glasgow 2014 pin design contest.

On the morning of Friday, April 4, the Premier hosted a welcome ceremony at the Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour before the baton relay ran through the Valley and the Baths. The baton also visited Necker Island and the North Sound, before returning to Tortola. The final leg of the relay was cycled, and run through East End-Long Look to the H Lavity Stoutt Community College.Queen's Baton Relay - HLSCC

The Glasgow 2014 Queen’s Baton Relay officially ended its tour of the VI with the return of the baton to the QBR traveling team during a brief closing ceremony. As part of the ceremony, Mr. Louis Rosa released the granite gemstone from the top of the baton and gifted it to the BVI Olympic Committee as the local Commonwealth Games Association. The gemstone can be seen at the BVIOC office.

The programme for the closing ceremony included cultural performances and a culinary tasting of traditional Scottish fayre presented by the Culinary Arts Department at the H Lavity Stoutt Community College.

“The Queen’s Baton Relay is perhaps one of the most unifying events that we join in as a community in the spirit of friendship and pride,” said Mr. Ephraim Penn. “The BVIOC recognizes that the successful planning and execution of the Glasgow 2014 Queen’s Baton Relay depended on the dedicated involvement of the key stakeholders, supporters and volunteers. It was a true demonstration of the community coming together to showcase our sports, culture and hospitality.

“On behalf of the BVIOC, I would like to thank the community of the Virgin Islands for coming together and celebrating this historic occasion.”

The Queen’s Baton Relay will end in Glasgow, Scotland where the message will be removed from the baton and read out loud signifying the end of the relay and the start of the XX Commonwealth Games which take place from July 23 – August 5, 2014.

The Glasgow 2014 Queen’s Baton and traveling team arrived in the Virgin Islands on Wednesday, April 2 from Anguilla. This was the third time that the Queen’s Baton Relay had been to the VI. The previous dates were in August 2005 and March 2010.

The Glasgow 2014 Queen’s Baton Relay visit comes under the BVIOC portfolio. Chaired by Chef de Mission XX Commonwealth Games, Mark Chapman, and led by event coordinator, Broadsword Communications, the Steering Committee comprised the BVIOC, the Office of the Governor, the Office of the Premier and Sister Island coordinator, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports, the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, the Department of Culture, the Department of Youth Affairs and Sports, the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College, and the BVI Tourist Board.

A full report on the Glasgow 2014 Queen’s Baton Relay in the VI can be found on


Baton bearers

Baton bearers throughout the territory included Tarique Moses, Roslyn McMillan of the BVI Bank Association, Mr. Kyron McMaster, Governor Boyd McCleary in the company of Karene King and Joe Kneipp, Acting Premier Dr. the Hon. Kedrick Pickering, Joe Chapman, and Judine Lacey, Mr. Guy Hill, Hon. Mark Vanterpool, Roger Mathavious, Ryan Geluk, Rotary of Road Town, junior tennis player, Paul Oliver, Hon. Delores Christopher, Hon Myron Walwyn, and special needs children and adults, Shaquor Gumbs, Kimiya Matthais, Kayanna Parsons, Angelika Washington, Izara Frett running in the company of Hon. Andrew Fahie, Mr. Simon Potter of Roadtown Wholesale, Tafara Phillip, Ellie Henley, Pastor Melvin Turnbull, Henry Creque, Rotary of Tortola, Quito Rhymer, young swimmer, Giselle Archibald Bowers, Optimist sailor, Thad Lettsome, Glenford Gordon (Athens 2011 Special Olympics sailing silver medalist), Shea Alexander, Hon Archibald Christian, Chef Arique Flax, Kyle Harrigan, Khalid Stevens, Deborah Bruce, Victor & Victorix Sports Champs, Lenford Pope (Athens 2011 Special Olympics sailing gold medalist), Robinson O’Neal Primary School, St Mary’s Primary School, Erwin Telemaque, Dean Greenaway, Hon. Marlon Penn, Steve Asson,

Khiry Creque, Neil Smith, Dion Crabbe, Nelda Huggins, Kaleed Pickering, the Cycling Federation, Janette Brin of CCT, and HLSCC faculty and staff.

Media contact
Cleave Farrington, Executive Director BVIOC
Tel: 494 6920 | 542 1007 | Email: