Travers juggles at speed

Dow Travers hurtled down the slopes to become Cayman’s first Winter Olympian a year ago in Canada and the 23-year-old student is looking forward to a repeat at the next Games in Russia in 2014.

Being from a Caribbean country was not that unusual at the Vancouver Games because there were a few others, but Travers got extra media attention because Cayman is was easily the tiniest island represented.

Travers did not disappoint either. He came 69th in a field of 103 in the giant slalom at Whistler Creekside, 80 miles from Vancouver, finishing with an overall time of 3 minutes 02.89 seconds in his two runs, 25 seconds behind the winner, Switzerland’s Carlo Janka. But it was a solid performance for a novice who only gets around 50 days to practice on the slopes a year.

Skiing has given way to studies and another sporting passion in the meantime – rugby – but Travers is no less focused on going to the next Games in Sochi.

“Since the Olympics I’ve settled back into my regular schedule of ski and rugby training,” he said. “I returned to Cayman last May to train with our rugby sevens team in preparation for the Central American and Caribbean games in July.

“The rugby was held in Guyana unlike the majority of the Games which were in Puerto Rico which we had qualified for the year before in Mexico. Then I returned to Brown University in September for my junior year where I was appointed co-captain of the Brown University rugby club and captain of the sevens team in November.

“Once the snow started to fall I returned to the slopes in Colorado and represented Brown on the east coast until the season ended a couple of weeks ago.”

Juggling his studies at the Ivy League university in Providence, Rhode Island and keeping the sports training going is exhausting, but Travers manages. “As I’m at university my time for training is, as always, very limited. However, once I graduate I intend on training and racing full time.

“My aim is to race on either the European or North American Continental Cup Circuits to gain experience before the next Olympics. Hopefully, in 2014 my little brother Dean will be racing with me.” Dean is an exceptionally talented skier too who has been featured in these pages.

Dow added: “If all goes well I hope to return to Cayman on 9 April for the first leg of the Cayman Rugby XVs Caribbean Championship game against Jamaica, but unfortunately I might be double booked.”