Steps underway for the rebuild of the track surface at the A.O. Shirley Grounds


L-R, members of BVIAA, DYAS Director Mrs. Brenda Lettsome-Tye, BVIOC President Mr. Ephraim Penn, Mr. Cluesener and Mr. Hernandez of Beynon Sports, BVIAA President Steve Augustine & Recreation Department staff. Photo: BVIOC

The two major storms which affected the territory in 2017 – Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria, caused severe damage to the A.O. Shirley Recreation Grounds which is the BVI’s main sporting facility. Particularly, the track surface was left in very poor shape in the wakes of these disasters.

The President of the BVI Olympic Committee, Mr. Ephraim Penn took the initiative to tap into various resources at the Olympic level to see how they could assist with facilitating the rebuilding and restarting of sports for the BVIOC members, particularly Track and Field.

To that end, Panam Sports President, Mr. Neven Ilic agreed to help affected countries including the BVI, to provide funding from Panam Sports to help repair the track surface. Panam Sports contracted two agencies which specialize in track surfaces, Mondo USA and Beynon Sports to assess the damage to the track surfaces at the A.O. Shirley Recreation Grounds.

Last week, both agencies visited the territory to conduct a full-scale assessment and were joined by BVIOC President, Mr. Ephraim Penn, Director of Youth Affairs and Sports and the Ministry of Education and Culture, Mrs. Brenda Lettsome-Tye, BVI Athletics Association’s President, Mr. Steve Augustine, members of the BVIOC Executive, members of the BVIAA Executive, Director of the Recreation Trust, Mr. Stephen Payne and personnel responsible for the maintenance of the A.O. Shirley Grounds.

The two agencies will submit reports to Panam Sports who will then consult with the BVIOC in awarding a contract to one of the agencies to repair the track surface.

Mr. Ephraim Penn was very pleased with the support of Panam Sports in starting the process of rebuilding sports in the territory.