In one of his first official meetings since being appointed Minister of Sport, Senator Brent Sancho reviewed plans yesterday morning for the opening of the three national venues for cycling, tennis and aquatics with executives of each of the respective National Governing Bodies (NGBs).
The meeting was also attended by outgoing Minister of Sport, Dr. Rupert Griffith. Each NGB has outlined a schedule of events to coincide with the opening of each mega facility. The events are designed to showcase the talent within the various disciplines, promote Trinidad and Tobago as a destination as well as market the modern facilities which will be accessible to elite athletes, local, regional and international.
According to a release from the Sports Company of Trinidad and Tobago (Sportt) Minister Sancho was pleased with the progress being made in each discipline and was careful to impress upon the executives the need to get value for money. He also was keen to learn about opportunities to secure investment from the private sector, for these events and beyond, so as to wean the NGBs off their heavy reliance on state funding.
Minister Sancho further stressed the need to increase participation in sports and improve the level of adjudication, officiating and use of timing and other technical systems so that future hosting of events may be driven by local expertise. Comprehensive training programmes in these areas will take place prior to opening of the facilities, the release stated.
Minister Sancho will conduct private site visits to each of the new national facilities over the weekend.
The National Cycling Velodrome in Couva and National Tennis Centre in Tacarigua are scheduled to be completed in June while the National Aquatics Centre, also in Couva, is due to come on stream in July/August.