Travers flies the Cayman flag

The following
is a report from the 2010 Vancouver
Winter Olympics, written by Caymanian Compass sports editor Ron Shillingford. He is there until the end of the
month at the behest of the Cayman Islands
Olympic Committee covering Cayman’s first presence in those Games:

Dow Travers, the first Cayman Islands athlete to
compete in the Winter Olympics, marched proudly around the BC Arena at the
opening ceremony of the Games in Vancouver
on Friday carrying his national flag.

 Travers, 22,
competes in the giant slalom on 21 February. As he walked around the packed stadium
in front of three billion people watching on TV, his heart pounded in excitement.

Marching behind Travers were Donald McLean,
President of the Cayman Islands Olympic Committee, his coach Gene Bridgewater
and David Carmichael, Chef de Mission.

Watching proudly amongst the 60,000 people in
attendance was Dow’s parents Anthony and Mary Anne, the Premier McKeeva Bush
and the Minister of Youth and Sports Mark Scotland.

Scotland
beamed about Cayman being represented by Travers at the Games.

“We were proud to see the Cayman flag being carried
for the first time in our history into the Winter Olympics,” Scotland said.

“The ceremony was amazing and we are looking forward
to Dow competing. We wish him luck and all the Cayman Islands
will be behind him.”

Canada
has promised to make this the best Winter Olympics ever and judging by the spectacular
start, they could achieve it.

A number of Canadian pop stars added some excitement
by performing at the opening ceremony including K.D. Lang, Bryan Adams and
Nelly Furtado.

The night was tinged with sadness though because a
Georgian luge racer, Nodar Kumaritashvili, 21, died earlier during training. A
minute’s silence was observed.

Look out for more reports and photos from Ron
Shillingford in coming editions.

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