Olympic Day celebrated with National Federations and a focus on Rio 2016

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Runners on BVI Olympic Day 2016. Photo: BVIOC

Adults and children kicked off Olympic Day in the VI with an early morning run in Virgin Gorda on Saturday, June 25. In Tortola, a mix of all ages came out in the afternoon to celebrate the occasion at the Tortola Sports Club by watching demonstrations in rugby, archery, taekwondo, squash and having a go at each of the sports in advance of the symbolic 2-mile run through Road Town.

Representatives for the national federations for Rugby, Archery, Taekwondo and Squash also shared information on the sports and encouraged attendees to sign up and get moving with a new activity.

Rio 2016 sailing hopeful, Chris Brockbank joined the Royal BVI Yacht Club to speak about the efforts he and his teammate, Alec Anderson had undertaken in their quest to qualify for this Summer Olympic Games. Whilst they did not meet the Rio 2016 qualification, Chris reiterated their commitment to pursuing qualification for Tokyo 2020. Club manager Tamsin Rand also spoke about the youth sailing programme.

The VI Swimming Federation represented by the president and members of the youth swimming team were also in attendance.

Ephraim Penn, president of the BVIOC gave a brief history of the BVI Olympic Committee and presented one of the founding members, Reynold ‘Rey’ O’Neal, OBE with a commemorative photo book of the tribute evening hosted for him by the BVIOC earlier in the year.

In keeping with the goal of Olympic Day to get the young involved and engaged in sports, Penn also spoke about the Long Term Athletes Development programme hosted by the BVIOC. The series of LTAD workshops will equip coaches with the resources to identify and develop promising youth athletes with a view to training them for major games such as the Olympics.

Chef de Mission for Rio 2016, Stephanie Russ-Penn followed with an update on the preparations for Rio 2016 confirming that the VI’s qualified track runners, Tahesia Harrigan-Scott (100m) and Ashley Kelly (200m) will be joined by young swimmer, Elinah Phillip (50m Freestyle) who will compete as part of the universality invitation.

Russ-Penn then went on to reveal the outerwear for the Team BVi athletes participating in major games highlighting the integration of the Vigilante in the design.

Rounding off with information on attending the summer Games, Mark Chapman, Treasurer, BVIOC said, “Rio 2016 promises to be an exciting occasion and it’s not too late to get event tickets and support Team BVI in Brazil. The BVIOC has tickets for residents and anyone else who has a connection to the territory. Recent research also shows airfare via Panama is available starting at $1006 so anyone interested in getting tickets can complete an online request on bviolympics.org or contact the BVIOC office on 494 6920. The summer Games take place August 5 – 21.”

The afternoon set up at the sports club included tips and massages by La Ambiance Spa and an information booth run by the VI branch of the Regional Anti-Doping Organisation (RADO).

The Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, and Red Cross volunteers were on hand to ensure the safety of the runners and walkers. Roadtown Wholesale distributed Dasani water and Powerade to participants along the route and at the sports club.

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, “Olympic Day is for everyone, regardless of age or athletic ability. The important thing is to get the couch potatoes off the couch. Although Olympic Day commemorates an historic event, its goals are aimed at the future and particularly at young people. Olympic Day is an opportunity to remind people that sport is not just for watching. We want to inspire all people to get active and to have fun. Thank you for doing your part by getting off the couch. Please encourage others to do the same — not just on Olympic Day, but as part of a healthier and happier life. Enjoy the day, and please keep the spirit of Olympic Day alive throughout the year.”

Olympic day activities celebrate the countdown to Rio 2016

OlypicDay2016 (7)The BVI Olympic Committee (BVIOC) will be celebrating its annual Olympic Day event with multi-sport activities hosted at the Tortola Sports Club on Saturday, June 25th, 2016 from 2:30 pm – 6pm.

Based on the Olympic Day pillars of ‘Discover’, ‘Learn’, ‘Move’, activities kick off at 2:30pm with an opportunity for the public to discover a new sport and  learn about Archery, Rugby, Taekwondo, Squash, and Sailing from the representative national federations and by taking part in the interactive demonstrations.

Other highlights include the announcement of confirmed athletes to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, the Rio 2016 athletes’ slideshow, the unveiling of major Games uniforms, Rio ticketing information, tips and massages from Professionals for La Ambience Spa, the reading of the Olympic Day Message, and concluding with movement with the symbolic Olympic Day 2 mile run/walk through Road Town at 4:45pm.

The Virgin Gorda community will celebrate by assembling at the College grounds, Enid Pickering Building at the HLSCC Virgin Gorda Centre at 6:30am for the Olympic Day Run/Walk. Interested persons may contact Gloria L. Geoge at leolafoye@gmail.com and by mobile ‘phone on (284) 547 7404.

Free Olympic Day T-Shirts and Dasani water and Powerade, compliments of Road Town Wholesale (1975) Ltd., will be distributed to all participants.

Activities are open to adults and children of all ages and ability levels. Come out, take part and together let’s support the Olympic Movement!

For more information, please contact Cleave Farrigton, Executive Director, BVIOC by email at cmfarrington@bviolympics.org or by telephone on (284) 494 6920.

Olympic flame arrives in Brazil

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The Olympic flame has arrived in Brazil. A special flight operated by LATAM Airlines landed in the capital Brasília early on the morning of Tuesday 3 May, carrying the flame from the Olympic Museum in Lausanne, Switzerland to its new home in Brazil.
Over the course of the following 95 days, the Olympic torch will visit more than 300 towns and cities all over Brazil, before arriving in the Maracanã stadium in Rio de Janeiro for the opening ceremony of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on 5 August. The flame was taken to a welcoming ceremony at the Pálacio do Planalto, the official workplace of the President of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff.

President Rousseff used the flame to light the Rio 2016 Olympic Torch before passing it to double Olympic volleyball champion. Fabiana Claudino to start the Brazilian phase of the torch. relay.

President Rousseff used the flame to light the Rio 2016 Olympic Torch before passing it to double Olympic volleyball champion. Fabiana Claudino to start the Brazilian phase of the torch. relay.

“Brazil is now the country of the Games. We will remember this day and it will go down in history,” President Rousseff said, before using the flame to light the Rio 2016 Olympic Torch and pass it to double Olympic volleyball champion Fabiana Claudino to start the Brazilian phase of the torch relay.
Ephraim Penn, president of the BVIOC along with presidents of all other NOC’s, was in attendance at the welcoming ceremony.
The flame was lit at at traditional ceremony in the Temple of Hera in Olympia in Greece, on 21 April. Following ancient custom, a parabolic mirror was used to light the flame with the sun’s rays.The same day, a torch relay began that took the flame all over Greece, before visiting the United Nations in Geneva and the Olympic Museum in Lausanne. On 5 August, the torch will be used to light the Olympic cauldron at the opening ceremony.When it travels by air, the flame is preserved inside special lanterns which sit on a dedicated seat inside the aircraft. Security forces guard the flame at all times to make sure it travels safely and never goes out.

Want to go to Rio? Click here to book your tickets and packages.

100 Days To Go to Rio 2016

#100daystogoWednesday 27 April marks a significant milestone in the build-up to the Olympic Games Rio 2016. Only 100 days now remain until the Opening Ceremony, the countdown has well and truly begun. Friends and fans of the BVI can buy their tickets and Rio 2016 packages online via the BVI Olympic Committee web site at bviolympics.org.

With the lighting of the Olympic Flame in Ancient Olympia last week and the start of the Olympic Torch Relay, there is a growing sense that the Games are just around the corner. Another milestone in the countdown was completed today as the Flame was officially handed over to Rio 2016 – on 100 days to go – at a special ceremony held at the Panathenaic  Stadium in Athens, the venue for the inaugural Olympic Games of the modern era back in 1896.

Before embarking on its three-month journey around Brazil, which starts in Brasilia on 3 May and will see it being carried by 12,000 people through every state capital and over 300 towns en route to the Maracana Stadium in Rio, the Olympic Flamewill make a short stopover in Switzerland. Following a ceremony at United Nations in Geneva on Friday, it will briefly go on display at the Olympic Museum in Lausanne.

In Rio, meanwhile, preparations are continuing apace. With the venues now 98-percent complete and most of them having been put through their paces at test events, the visual look of the Games is quickly taking shape, adding to the belief that the city is now ready to play host to the world’s finest athletes in August.

Though many have yet to qualify, a sizeable number of competitors have already made sure of their places at Rio 2016, with the likes of Jamaican sprinting icon Usain Bolt and British boxer Nicola Adams – a gold medallist in the women’s 51kg at London 2012 –set to grace the big stage in 100 days’ time. From the BVI, Tahesia Harrigan-Scott has secured her place in the 100m dash as has 200m runner, Ashley Kelly.

The qualification process is complete in a number of sports, however, namely artistic gymnastics, all the equestrian events, football, handball, hockey, rhythmic gymnastics, shooting, track cycling, trampoline gymnastics and water polo.

In particular, excitement is building among the home athletes. Speaking after Brazil’s women’s artistic team had sealed their place at Rio 2016 at the recent gymnastics test event, Brazilian gymnast Jade Barbosa said: “We all fought to the end and it was great. Now we’ve qualified we can train specifically in our events and with the Olympic Games in mind. This is a very talented team and we’re all focused. It’s all been worth it so far.”

As the final competition rosters start to take shape and the Olympic Flame makes its way around the host nation, Brazil’s dream of hosting the Games will become a reality. Check out www.olympic.org and www.rio2016.com for more ways to follow, as well as more information and the different ways you can take part in the Olympic Games Rio 2016.

BVIOC prepares for VI to experience Rio 2016 live

Rio-2016-Stephanie-Russ-PennIn the count down to the Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games, delegates of the BVI Olympic Committee (BVIOC) attended the Caribbean Association of National Olympic Committees (CANOC) workshops and forums hosted by the Suriname Olympic Committee.

BVIOC President, Ephraim Penn attended the 2nd Annual CANOC Workshop and General Assembly, October 10 – 11 where the main topic was the CANOC Broadcasting Inc (CBI) acquisition of broadcast rights for the Rio 2016 Olympics and the local scheduling of live broadcasts of events in which Caribbean national athletes will compete and local sponsorship opportunities.

CBI has hired ESPN to do the production, which, according to Larry Romany, CEO of CBI, “will not be doing a US production but a Caribbean production. This means you are not only seeing Caribbean sports but prior to the events Caribbean athletes will be interviewed.”

“This is a very welcome initiative,” said Penn. “It means that we can now follow the performances of our VI athletes as a live broadcast.”

The CANOC meetings were held in tandem with the Olympic Solidarity Forum 2015 which took place October 12-13. Stephanie Russ-Penn, the VI’s Chef de Mission for Rio 2016, and Cleave Farrington, executive director, BVIOC attended the forum which focused on the preparation of Chefs for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

The forum followed on from the Rio 2016 Chefs de Mission Seminar which took place in Brazil in August of this year. Delegates included Russ-Penn and Mark Chapman, treasurer, BVIOC. Discussions covered accommodation, accreditation, arrivals and departures, doping controls, medical services, ticketing, and transport rate cards as well as the details needed by the Chefs to help prepare their teams when in Rio for the Games. Delegates also had an opportunity to visit sports specific venue sites including the Olympic Village.

“It is now less than 300 days to the Games and we are into our stride with preparations for the VI’s attendance,” said Russ-Penn. “The seminar and forums have been informative and helpful in making sure that we are appraised on what our athletes should and can expect as well as being reassured that the organisers are on track with their preparations of the venues and facilities for the participants.”

Tickets for Rio 2016 are now on sale only through the authorized ticketing resellers of National Olympic Committees. The BVIOC has purchased an allocation of tickets and is offering packages through its travel agent, Great Experience Travel.

“We would really like to see a strong contingent of VI residents and supporters in Brazil waving the flag for Team BVI,” said Chapman. “And while event tickets can be purchased individually, packages for the whole Olympic experience are very reasonable.

Sold in ‘waves’ of 3, 4 or 5 nights, prices start from US$2,325 per person and include event tickets and a ‘meet the team’ function, round-trip airport transfers, meet & greet at the airport, welcome drinks, hotel accommodation and breakfast.

David Gambler of Great Experience Travels was in Tortola October 15 – 17 and explained the ticket allocation and resale process. “The Rio 2016 event organisers release a number of tickets per event which in turn are allocated to NOCs for purchase based on a set of criteria including population size, number of anticipated athletes, and popularity of event.”

“We may not have tickets for all the events that you want to attend right off the bat but sometimes the event organisers will release a few more tickets closer to the Games,” Gambler said. “This happens, for example, if they make changes to a venue to increase the seating capacity or if another authorized ticket reseller has an allocation of unsold tickets that we then have access to.”

Gambler also cautions those who plan to book their accommodation independently. “During major Games, not only do hotel prices and car rentals go up, but inventory goes down as event organisers book 80% of the accommodation for participants, delegates and supporters,” said Gambler. This leaves only a small inventory which is contracted out to authorized ticket resellers or sold directly by the hoteliers or their consolidators.”

Gambler advises that since double bookings during major games are not uncommon when made through an online consolidator, travellers should use a credit card to make the booking or ensure that they take out travel insurance.

More information on tickets, accommodation, and travel for Rio 2016 can be received by completing the online Rio 2016 Ticket Request form.

Rio 2016 Live – presentations on tickets, travel and tours

With 300 days to go to the start of the 2016 Olympic Games, the British Virgin Islands Olympic Committee launches the Road to Rio 2016 with a presentation at the Tortola Sports Club at 6.00pm on Thursday, October 15 covering how to obtain tickets, transport, accommodation and tours for this once in a life time event.

The BVIOC’s official ticket and tour agency, Great Experience Travel Group, will be in the BVI from October 15 – 17, 2015 to share detailed information on the options available for residents and supporters of Team BVI to travel to Brazil and attend events at the Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games.

In addition to the presentation at the Tortola Sports Club, David Gambler of Great Experience Travel will be at Trellis Market from 5.30pm – 7.30pm on Saturday, October 17 for one-to-one conversations on packages to attend the Games. Interested persons can also contact the BVIOC by email at mchapman@bviolympics.org to schedule a meeting at the BVIOC office or off site to discuss packages and corporate, group or individual bookings.

Now you can easily and affordably experience Rio 2016 live as part of a trip of lifetime, a corporate event or as a special client invitation.

The British Virgin Islands Olympic Committee has purchased an allocation of tickets and is offering packages through our travel agent starting at just US$2,325 per person including round-trip airport transfers, meet & greet at the airport, welcome drinks, hotel accommodation (incl. breakfast), event tickets and a ‘meet the team’ function.

The packages can be purchased for one or more of the following waves:
Wave One – arrive into Rio on 4th August 2016, stay for 4 nights, and depart on 8th August
Wave Two – arrive into Rio on 8th August 2016, stay for 5 nights, and depart on 13th August
Wave Three – arrive into Rio on 13th August 2016, stay for 3 nights, and depart on 16th August
Wave Four – arrive into Rio on 16th August 2016, stay for 3 nights, and depart on 19th August
Wave Five – arrive into Rio on 19th August 2016, stay for 3 nights, and depart on 22nd August.

Event tickets also can be purchased individually.

To find out more in advance of the presentation, please complete the registration form and our Ticket Administrator, David, will respond with ticket purchase details and different hotel options available to supporters of the BVI Team.

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