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Gibbon hopes Baton Relay will motivate TT athletes

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FORMER Trinidad and Tobago cyclist and double Commonwealth Games gold medallist Roger Gibbon, is hoping that the Queen’s Baton Relay will inspire the national athletes ahead of the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia.

Gibbon, who won two gold medals (1km time trial and match sprint) at the 1966 Commonwealth Games in Kingston, Jamaica, featured during the Queen’s Baton Relay which was held in Port-of-Spain, yesterday morning.

A 10-kilometre race featuring former and current national athletes and sport administrators was held to celebrate the arrival of the Queen’s Baton to TT .

“It was an exciting event this morning, it brought back fond memories, real fond memories,” Gibbon said after the event. “In 1966 I had some success at the Commonwealth Games and memories go back to that.” The former cyclist said he enjoyed participating in the relay with the national athletes, and hopes the experience gave them some motivation. Gibbon said, “(It felt) great to be out there with the next generation of athletes.

It is nice to see younger people coming forward, I hope something like this will motivate them for the future. Commonwealth Games is next year, I will love to see Trinidad and Tobago get some medals.” The relay featured numerous national athletes including the boxing trio of Nigel Paul, Aaron Prince and Michael Alexander and shooter Roger Daniel. Former national athletes at yesterday’s event included the cycling pair of Gibbon and Michael Phillips. President of the TT Olympic Committee Brian Lewis, president of the TT Paralympic Commitee Sudhir Ramessar, and Reema Carmona, wife of President Anthony Carmona also participated.

Asked what advice he will give the young athletes Gibbon said, “Train harder than anybody else.” Speaking about the growth of cycling over the last 50 years, Gibbon is not satisfied, but said, with the opening of the National Cycling Velodrome in Couva, more stars can be discovered.

Lewis, who is also the president of the TT Commonwealth Games Association, was satisfied with the support of the Queen’s Baton Relay. Lewis said, “Well supported, especially by the athletes past and present. It was great to see the turnout of athletes, some of the medal winners of recent years. We had 2014 Glasgow (medallist) Michael Alexander.

You had Roger Daniel (taking part). You had the legendary Roger Gibbon, still our only double gold medallist. I am very happy with the support. We had her excellency (Reema Carmona) doing the first leg, his excellency (Anthony Carmona) was here, the mayor (of Port-of-Spain Joel Martinez) was here.”

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