Dame Flora Duffy to lead the Bermuda charge on opening day of Commonwealth Games
Dame Flora Duffy is among six Bermuda athletes who will get their Commonwealth Games campaign under way on the official first day of action on Friday.
The 34-year-old, who carries the island’s medal expectations on her shoulders, will be aiming to defend the women’s triathlon crown that she won in Australia four years ago, when racing begins at 10.30am Bermuda time.
Duffy will be joined on the start line by compatriot Erica Hawley, with the 24-year-old aiming to build on the momentum of her first podium finish in the elite women’s Continental Cup, coming third at the Americas Triathlon Cup Long Beach in California this month.
Before the women’s race, Tyler Smith will be in action among the individual men’s field, which gets under way at 7.01am. The trio will then be joined by Tyler Butterfield as they take on the mixed relay two days later.
“Final preparations have gone really well and it’s great to have had Tyler [Butterfield] as company in Boulder [Colorado],” said Duffy, who enjoyed the perfect build-up for the Games with a storming victory in the World Triathlon Championship Series in Hamburg, Germany, this month. “It’s definitely helped the training go well and executing each session.
“I was really pleased with how I raced in Hamburg and it was great to get a win again. I thought it was a great final race before the Commonwealth Games.”
The honour of being the first of the island’s athletes in action falls to siblings Emma and Jack Harvey, who be aiming to make a splash in swimming in their first Commonwealth Games.
The former is among the field of the 100 metres butterfly, while her brother will be competing in the 100 backstroke, with the heats scheduled to start 6.30am.
Emma then returns to the pool on Saturday, where she will also be joined by the final member of the swimming contingent, Madelyn Moore, with both in action in the 50 freestyle heats and 100 backstroke heats.
The final member of the Bermuda team competing on the opening day of competition is Emma Keane, who will be the island’s first women’s squash player at the Games.
The 26-year-old will take to the court in the women’s singles round of 64, with action due to begin at 8am.
Bermuda’s athletics contingent, consisting of Caitlyn Bobb, Sakari Famous, Tiara DeRosa, Dage Minors and Jah-Nhai Perinchief finally get their first taste of action on Tuesday.
Minors, fresh from beating a 24-year-old national record in the 1,500 metres at the Trafford Grand Prix, kicks off his campaign in the first round of the 800, while Bobb also takes the track in the opening round of the 400. Meanwhile, DeRosa will be in the hunt for a medal in the discus.
A day later, Famous competes in the qualifying of the high jump, with Perinchief in triple jump qualification action on August 5.
Also competing in the latter stages of the event is the cycling contingent, of Caitlin Conyers, Kaden Hopkins, Nicholas Narraway and Conor White, who will be in time-trial action on August 4, before rounding out the Games in the road race three days later.