Hive of activity at 2nd annual Olympic Day Sports Festival

International Olympic Day was marked on Saturday, June 22nd with the 2nd annual Sports Festival at the A.O. Shirley Recreation Grounds. The morning of interactive events to promote the Olympic Day pillars to move, learn and discover was hosted by the BVI Olympic Committee in conjunction with the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth Affairs, Fisheries and Agriculture.

National Federations set up stations around the grounds where they staged demo sessions and invited attendees of the Sports Festival to join in. There was full and enthusiastic uptake in the sports as presented by archery, athletics, basketball, cycling, football, rugby, softball/baseball, taekwondo, tennis and volleyball with children and adults alike trying their hand at something new.

Sailing and squash had information stands featuring the equipment of their sport with each of the coaches respectively encouraging hands-on engagement with the sailing optimist on display and with the rackets and balls. Information on anti-doping and the Caribbean Regional Anti-Doping Organisation was also available from Doping Control Officers.

“The response from the National Federations this year was exceptional and we could not have hosted such a successful event without their full participation,” said Ephraim Penn, President of the BVIOC. “The International Olympic Committee had encouraged NOCs to ramp up activities this year to extend beyond the traditional Olympic Day walk/run and to promote the concept of getting active as a way of life regardless of age and ability. I am pleased that the BVIOC was ahead of the curve with this idea as we have been promoting interactive engagement since Olympic Day 2012 when we hosted the event at the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College. The festival also provides the perfect platform for supporting our Long Term Athlete Development Programme.”

Following welcome remarks by Mr. Roy Barry, 2nd Vice President of the BVIOC and the reading of the Olympic Day Message from the President of the IOC, Mr. Thomas Bach, Dr. the Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley, Minister for Education and Culture recognized the major achievements for athletes and teams as provided by some of the National Federations. Certificates of acknowledgement were given for distribution to the named athletes in athletics, football, rugby, sailing, softball/baseball and volleyball.

The Honourable Minister encouraged all athletes to stay the course and to continue to achieve results that they can be proud of.

Olympic Day was also selected as the appropriate occasion to officially announce the four athletes who have qualified to compete at the Lima 2019 Pan American Games from July 26th through August 11th. Naming senior track and field athletes and one sailor, Honourable Neville Smith, 1st Vice President, BVIOC congratulated Chantel Malone (long jump), Kyron McMaster (400m hurdles) and Eldred Henry (shot put) on their outstanding achievements in qualifying meets as well as 17-year old, Thad Lettsome who was awarded a universality place in the men’s laser event. The two sports’ disciplines are qualifiers for the Tokyo 2020 Summer Games.

On the heels of the announcement, Honourable Wheatley stated that the Ministry of Education and Culture has awarded checks amounting to $24,000 for senior athlete, Kyron McMaster for his gold medal wins at the 2018 Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games and the 2018 North American, Central American and Caribbean (NACAC), Championships. Chantel Malone was also named as a recipient of a check for $9,000 for her silver medal win at the 2018 CAC Games.

“The Government has committed to paying our senior athletes for podium finishes at major international competitions,” said Honourable Wheatley. “This award is a ‘thank you’ as well as an incentive to stay committed to putting in the hard work and focus on winning a medal.” He went on to joke that the current roster of athletes was on track to bankrupting the government’s coffers.

At the invitation of Ms. Sabinah Clement, Athlete Representative, BVIOC, 3 athletes stepped forward to share their experiences. A volleyball player since the age of 12, Ms. Sharonda Pickering spoke of her route to becoming one of the best middle players in the sport in the NCAA conference, helping her school to conference and national championships.

Mr. Kenard Dawson who was home for the Summer, explained how he started his baseball career as a young boy playing softball with coach and VISBA President, Terrence Chinnery before going on to become catcher for the team at Georgia Premier Academy High School and earning a 4 Year Scholarship at Grambling State University, Statesboro, Georgia.

Ms. Beyonce Defreitas who just completed her freshman year at University of Central Florida, is a 100m and 200m sprinter and she closed out the opening remarks with a talk through of qualifying for the Commonwealth Youth Games, the Carifta Games and the IAAF World Under 20 Championships and competing at NCAA Division 1 events. Ms. Defreitas encouraged all the young aspiring athletes to follow their dreams and to be strong in their self-belief and confidence in their abilities.

Olympic Day was established in 1948 as an annual occasion where everyone everywhere can get together in their communities, whatever their age, ability or disability, to celebrate the Olympic values of Respect, Excellence and Friendship and also celebrate the Olympic Day pillars: Move. Learn. Discover.

The 2019 Olympic Day Sports Festival was sponsored by the Ministry of Education and Culture and the Department of Youth Affairs and Sports, Dasani water, Powerade and Coca Cola products distributed by Road Town Wholesale Trading Ltd, and MB’s Ice

Click to view the Olympic Day Sports Festival album on FaceBook

Community invited to 2nd annual Olympic Day Sports Festival

The BVI Olympic Committee, supported by the Ministry of Education and Culture through the Department of Youth Affairs and Sports will host its second annual Sports Festival at the A.O. Shirley Recreation Grounds from 9:00am – 12:00pm on Saturday, June 22.

The Sports Festival, marking the globally celebrated international Olympic Day, aims to encourage the community to get physically active by promoting the Olympic message to “move, learn and discover”.

The morning will feature interactive stations set up by National Sporting Federations with opportunities for everybody of all ages and abilities to try out a sport. Adults and children alike will be able to test their skills and find out more about archery, athletics, basketball, football, rugby, sailing, softball/baseball, squash, swimming, taekwondo, tennis and volleyball with a view to finding a sport that ignites an interest and to get active in their daily life.

Recently trained Doping Control Officers (DCOs) will be on hand to explain more about anti-doping in sports. Information will be provided about the Long Term Athlete Development programme and the importance of incorporating physical activity as part of a regular routine to minimize the risks of non-communicable diseases. DYAS will also have information on its Summer programme for 13 – 18 year olds.

During the brief opening of the Sports Festival, the Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley, the Minister for Education, Culture and Sports will recognize the major achievements of national athletes and teams as provided by the National Federations.

On this day, the Honourable Neville Smith, 1st VP of the BVIOC will also announce the senior athletes who have so far qualified to compete in the Lima 2019 Pan American Games which will take place in Peru from July 26 – August 11.

Free Olympic Day tee shirts will be handed out by the BVIOC as well as complimentary water, chilled courtesy of MBs Ice.

Olympic Day was established in 1948 as an annual occasion where everyone everywhere can get together in their communities to celebrate the Olympic values of Respect, Excellence and Friendship and also celebrate the Olympic Day pillars: Move. Learn. Discover.

Community joins BVIOC in celebrating Olympic Day with Sports Festival

Participants of the 2018 Olympic Day Sports Festival. Photo: CM Farrington/BVIOC

Olympic Day in the Virgin Islands hosted by the Olympic Committee kicked off on June 23 with an early morning run and walk. This was followed by a Sports Festival to mark the globally celebrated day which locally, took place at the A.O. Shirley Recreation Grounds featuring several National Sporting Federations and their athletes.

Ephraim Penn, President of the BVIOC also used the occasion to hand over new equipment donated by PanAm Sports to benefit the track and field athlete members of the BVI Athletic Association. Kit included shot puts, discus, hammer, and electronic starting blocks.

Around 70 runners and walkers registered for the 6.30am 10km/5km run and 1 mile run/walk on Saturday with top finishers receiving special edition BVIOC shirts and bags as prizes. More people arrived at the recreation grounds and the multi sports complex mid-morning to watch demonstrations and try their hand in athletics, archery, basketball, football, rugby, tennis, and volleyball.

Mr. Penn summarized the activities and achievements of the national federations over the last 12 months and invited attending national federation representatives to provide additional information on their progress.

“The public may be forgiven for thinking that sports had been put on the back burner since the August floods and Hurricanes Irma and Maria,” said Mr. Penn. “However, this is not the case as illustrated by the National Federations’ reports of individual and team success. We are encouraged and excited that not only did the coaches and athletes show their resilience and determination to continue with their sports following the natural disasters, but they went on to win medals, titles and trophies and improve on their previous scores and times! Congratulations to all involved.”

Coaches from Athletics, Archery, Football, Rugby, and Tennis spoke on the recovery of their sports following the August floods and September hurricanes and encouraged attendees at the Sports Festival to join in their demo sessions taking place on the field. A 12-month review of the National Federation activities is set out below.

The morning set up included a 10,000 Step Challenge and an information booth on anti-doping. There were children’s bouncy castles courtesy of Digicel and Red Cross volunteers were on hand to ensure the safety of all participants. Roadtown Wholesale provided Dasani water, Powerade, Coca Cola and Sprite throughout the day.

Olympic Day was established in 1948 as an annual occasion where everyone everywhere can get together in their communities to celebrate the Olympic values of Respect, Excellence and Friendship and also celebrate the Olympic Day pillars: Move. Learn. Discover.

In his Olympic Day message to people around the world, IOC President, Thomas Bach said, “For the past 70 years, Olympic Day commemorates the founding modern Olympic Movement. Olympic Day reminds us that anyone, anywhere, can enjoy and benefit from sport. In our fast-changing society, Olympic Day is an excellent way to encourage all people to lead healthy and active lives and to promote the role of sport in society. Our thanks and gratitude go to the National Olympic Committees who are bringing sport and its values closer to the people through the many sporting, educational and cultural activities that are organized throughout the year. Thank you for encouraging people of all backgrounds and ability to get up and get moving, to discover sport and to embrace Olympic Values. ”

Photo: BVI Rugby Football Union

Junior tennis players. Photo; BVI Tennis Association

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Review of National Federation Activity June 2017 – June 2018

BVI Athletics Association
2017 OECS Track & Field Championships – Team BVI won the Meet title.

2017 Commonwealth Youth Games – Djimon Gumbs placed third in the discus with a distance of 56.24 meters. Beyonce Defreitas placed second in the 200m with a time of 23.88 seconds.

2017 Diamond League Championships – Kyron McMaster won the event with a time of 48.07 seconds.

2017 World Championships – Chantel Malone placed 7th with a jump of 6.57 meters becoming the first BVI athlete making it to a final of a Major Championship Outdoor Meet

2018 Carifta Games – Rikkoi Brathwaite placed third in the 100m with a time of 10.46 seconds (BVI’s first medal in the male sprints in 41 years)

2018 Commonwealth Games – Chantel Malone placed 5th with a jump of 6.48 meters
Kyron McMaster won the event with a time of 48.25 seconds

Virgin Islands Archery Association
2017 – National Archery introduced in the schools’ program and 21 Students received scholarships of the $20K that was awarded in 2017. Participating schools included Cedar International School, Elmore Stoutt High School, Bregado Flax, Willard Wheatley, and Francis Lettsome Primary School.

The National Archery Team competed in Puerto Rico at the JEB Cup Developmental Championships and brought home 16 medals competing against 17 other countries (
5 gold, 6 silver, 3 bronze).

2018 – After the departure of a few members of the team due to hurricane Irma, only 3 members of the National Archery Team traveled to the Dominican Republic in April to compete in their first world ranking event. The team missed the mark by 1 spot for the CAC Games.

BVI Football Association
2017 – At the Concacaf U 15 tournament, the national team won 8-2 v. Montserrat, 2-0 v. Anguilla, and 8-2 v. Turks & Caicos and finished 4th out of 16 in Division C.
January 2018 – Played in the Premier U 12 Tournament in Puerto Rico and finished 3rd having won 1, drawn 1, and lost 1.
2018 U 14 Flanders Cup in St. Martin – Finished 2nd having defeated the favourites Martinique and St. Martin teams to advance in the finals.

At the 2018 World Cup, Deshawn Richardson, 13 and 12 year old Ryan Ramlall attended the Gasprom F4F 2018 program in Moscow, Russia as a footballer and journalist respectively. The boys participated in 3-day camps which focused respectively in journalism and soccer. The culmination were interviews by Ryan getting published and Deshawn’s team, the Humpback Whales, making it to the semi-finals of the F4F championship. Both Ryan and Deshawn represented the BVI well.

BVIFA also have successfully conducted the Senior Men’s National League and the Primary and Secondary School Leagues.

BVI Rugby Football Union
Rugby is now back in the schools and training is in full swing for all men and women.
In April 2018, BVI won the Kowloon 10s RugbyFest in Hong Kong.
In May 2018, the national team represented in an international match against Turks and Caicos Islands in the TCI.

Royal BVI Yacht Club
BVI youth sailing is ongoing at Nanny Cay Marina.
Thad Lettsome, representing the BVI at the 47th Youth Sailing World Championships in Sanya, China in December 2017 finished in 33rd position in the Laser Radial Class.
The RBVIYC hosted the annual Manhattan Yacht Club Trophy in February, the annual BVI Spring Regatta in April and the 2018 BVI Dinghy Championships in May.

BVI Squash Rackets Association
A new coach will start the squash program in July. Joe Chapman and Neville Sorrentino competed at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games. Joe won the Plate.
The VI team competed in the annual OECS Squash Championships in St. Vincent and the Grenadines in May.

BVI Swimming Association
Elinah Phillip won 3 silver medals in the 50m Fly, 50m Freestyle, and 200m Freestyle at the Carifta Swimming Championships held in Jamaica in April.

BVI Tennis Association
Tennis programme is ongoing at the East End Tennis Courts.
Deandrea Baijnauth competed in the C. O. Williams COTECC U14s International Junior Tennis Tournament in Barbados in April.
Three juniors competed in the 6th annual Caribbean 12 & Under Junior Invitational Tennis Tournament in Antigua in May.
The association successfully hosted open tennis days for Mothers’ Day and World Tennis Day.

Virgin Islands Volleyball Association
The association organised the 2 on 2 male and female Beach volleyball tournament which concluded earlier in June.