Raynor confident of support for Carifta bid
Hosting the Carifta Games offers tremendous benefits for Bermuda both on and off the track, according to Bermuda National Athletics Association president Donna Raynor.
Raynor announced at a press conference last week that the island has submitted a bid to host the 2020 Carifta Games.
Bermuda hosted the Games in 2004 and 2012.
“I’m very optimistic that we will win the bid,” Raynor said. “I know several of the islands have already told me they are going to support Bermuda because they all love it and want to come back.
“As you know, we put on a wonderful show so I’m very optimistic that we are going to win that bid. We’re taking government officials to support it, so I’m quite excited as well.”
Raynor said the island has the right formula to run the event successfully.
“The thing with Carifta is if you get accommodations right, transportation right, food right and the events run on time, they call it perfect,” she said.
“When we had it here in 2004 and 2012 they loved the accommodations because we had them at Fairmont Hamilton Princess, the transportation was right on time, the food plan we had was perfect and the meet ran flawless. The only complaint we had, which we can’t control, is the weather. It was cold, but we can’t control that.”
As for the benefits of having the Games staged in Bermuda, Raynor said: “The major benefit, as you know for Carifta, is spectators come in droves, which increases our tourism so that in itself is a big benefit.
“It’s also good exposure to Bermuda for an event of that magnitude and also good exposure for our athletes that are competing and those wanting to aspire. As you know, Usain Bolt broke the world junior record [in the 200 metres] in Bermuda and people are still talking about that.
“An event like that is just an inspiration for our athletes and an inspiration for Bermuda. It makes Bermuda proud to know we can put on something like that.”
This year’s Carifta Games, which will bring together about 500 athletes and 150 team officials from 26 countries, will take place from April 1 and 2 in Nassau, Bahamas, who are hosting the event for the eighth time.
Bermuda will be represented by a 14-strong team led by girls’ and boys’ captains Sakari Famous and Elisha Darrell.
Bermuda won two medals at last year’s Games in Curaçao, with newly crowned Junior Female Athlete of the Year Famous claiming bronze in the under-18 girls’ high jump and Tiara DeRosa in the under-20 girls’ discus.
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