Editorial for October 20: We welcome sports tourism

The Cayman Islands have long been
touted as the perfect place for tourists to visit.

We’ve got sugary white beaches,
turquoise water and fabulous flora and fauna.

But there is an area of tourism we
should concentrate more on – sports.

It’s good to read that one of the
world’s top cycling teams will host its first get-together for the 2011 season
here in Cayman.

The Garmin-Transitions team will
gather on Grand Cayman next month, bringing with it up to 30 professional
cyclists.

But that’s not all.

Along with those cyclists will be
many support staff and tag-alongs. The event is also certain to attract
visitors from around the globe keen to spend time with their favourite team.

There will be some top cycling
names in tow, too. Garmin-Transitions will be home to newly crowned world
champion and former Tour de France points jersey champion Thor Hushovd, as well
as Christian Vande Velde, fourth place finisher in the 2008 Tour de France, and
Pete Stetina, both of who have visited Cayman before.

While most of the team
Garmin-Transitions hails from the United States, there is an international
flavour with riders from the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, Norway and
Germany.

We can also expect massive media
coverage of the cycling event, which will put the Cayman Islands on the
sporting map for cyclists the world over.

You just can’t buy that kind of
media exposure.

The Cayman Islands is a perfect
place for cyclists to train. We also hope that their presence here will inspire
some of our younger folk to become interested in and take up cycling as a hobby
and possibly a career.

The Cayman Islands welcomes team
Garmin-Transitions and its entourage.

We hope that sports tourism becomes
something that is delved into more for the Cayman Islands.

We’ve got the right environment for
sports of all kinds – nearly perfect weather year-round, no pollution and a
clean environment.

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