: Newsday : Corey Connelly : 14.04.2023
TRINIDAD and Tobago Olympic Committee (TTOC) general secretary Annette Knott says the organisation does not anticipate any "major issues" on the airbridge as it relates to carrying athletes, officials and spectators between both islands in the run up to the Commonwealth Youth Games from August 4-11.
She was speaking at a news conference on Thursday hosted by the TTOC's local organising committee (LOC) at the Shaw Park Cultural Complex, Tobago.
Responding to a question about the availability of flights to Tobago before and during the tournament, Knott said the LOC has had a number of meetings already with Caribbean Airlines about securing seats for athletes participating in events on the island.
"So that on the arrival days from the 1st to the 3rd, we will have a number of what we would say heavy traffic of athletes arriving and on the actual days when the events are on, we have already secured seats that we will have for athletes and officials ie the Chef de Missions or medical staff that need to come to Tobago," she said.
"We have secured seats for that as well as extra seats for any officials that may be travelling, whether technical officials or the executive board of the Commonwealth Games Federation."
Knott added CAL has also established a group email so that supporters of the teams can go online and book seats to and from Tobago.
"So the airline has assured us that this is going to be very much part and parcel of the delivery of the games, Trinidad and Tobago. And therefore we do not anticipate any major issues with the airbridge."
At the briefing, chairman of the THA-appointed task force for the LOC George Leacock gave an update on the venues that will be used for the various sporting disciplines.
He said the Shaw Park Complex, will for the first time, host matches on its indoor sports floor.
"That floor will be deployed and there will be test events in advance," he said.
Leacock said the football field at the complex is the only one on the island that can be used for rugby.
But he added, "The orientation will be changed so members of the public will enter the facility from the cultural complex side while the other side will be closed and used as entry for the teams."
Leacock said the teams will also use rooms at the nearby Scarborough Secondary School "because the nature of the rugby competition is that the teams will be on site, on location for the entire day and the existing buildings at Shaw Park will be for officials, media coverage and possibly, the serving of lunch."
Leacock said while parts of the triathlon will take place in the sea at Buccoo, the running and cycling events will be on the road.
The cycling, he added, begins in the village and heads in the direction of Mt Irvine. But the running will go in the direction of Shirvan Road with the turnaround point being in front of the police station.
Leacock said an eco-friendly facility is being constructed for beach volleyball and other events at Black Rock.
"We are trying a green facility with teak, using sand to cover terraces on the bank. So instead of building a pavilion, people will be invited to spread their blanket or towel on the grass and look on at that activity."
He said the sand for the facility is being sourced from Guyana.
Secretary of Community Development, Youth Development and Sport Terance Baynes said the THA will spare no effort in ensuring that the games are well executed.
"We intend to do everything in our power to make sure as a THA we provide all of the necessary support systems, all the infrastructure, whatever physical infrastructure w epit in we want to make sure it is not cosmetic, these are things that we can use going forward."
He said he was pleased that an eco-friendly facility was being constructed at Black Rock.
"That facility in particular, we are going to try to involve the public in the next week or so as it relates to the design of a small, concessionary area to get public input," Baynes said.