Bahamian Youth Olympic Sailor To Carry Flag In Honour Of Sir
sailor Paul de Souza will carry the Bahamian flag at the Nanjing 2014 Youth
Olympic Games Opening Ceremony on 16 August to honour the 50th anniversary of
Sir Durward Knowles taking the nation's first ever Olympic gold.
The 15-year-old will lead the 14-strong Bahamas team that features athletes
in athletics, swimming and tennis but the eyes will firmly be on sailing's de
Souza at the front of the pack.
"I'm very excited
because I'm the flag bearer from the Bahamas because it's the 50th
anniversary since Sir Durward Knowles won a gold medal in the Star class so
they decided to pick me as the flag carrier just to honour that,” explained
"I couldn't be any
happier about it,” said de Souza with a beaming smile. "I'm almost speechless and I'm
really proud of myself and my country that we all made it to this event.
We're all from a small country and there are so many people here who come
from countries with millions and we're a country of thousands. I'm pretty
proud to be able to carry the flag and represent my country.
"He's a Bahamian hero
to a lot of people because he was our first gold medallist ever and a lot of
people look up to him. A lot of buildings have been named after him and he's
pretty important in our culture.”
Knowles and Cecil Cooke took the Bahamas first Olympic gold medal on 23 October
1964 at the Tokyo Olympic Sailing Competition in the Star class. Fifty years
on and the Bahamas National Olympic Committee has put the spotlight on
sailing. Knowles and Cooke will be honoured on the anniversary of their
victory by a luncheon where the IOC will present Sir Durward with the
prestigious President's Trophy – the highest honour given to athletes by the
IOC. Sandra Cooke, the daughter of Cecil Cooke, will receive the trophy
on behalf of her late father.
Representatives from the International Olympic Committee, International
Sailing Federation (ISAF), Japanese Olympic Committee and the Commonwealth
Games Federation are expected to attend.
Knowles took his nation's first Olympic medal at the Melbourne 1956 Olympic
Games and then eight years later picked up the first gold. In total the
Bahamas NOC has five gold, two silver and five bronze medals with the
foundations laid by Knowles.
In advance of de Souza heading to Nanjing for the Youth Olympic Games,
Knowles gave him a few encouraging words, "A
lot of times I am very modest and he said I need to be a little bit more
confident in what I do and he said go out there and try your best,” said
Scheduled to start at 20:00 local time on Saturday 16 August at the Olympic
Sports Centre Stadium, the Opening Ceremony of the 2014 Nanjing Youth Olympic
Games promises to be a spectacular and unmissable affair. The IOC will be
streaming the show live on its online channel, Olympic.tv, on www.olympic.org and on the official Olympic
YouTube channel, with all three platforms providing coverage of all
competitions from Sunday 16 August onwards.
The Opening Ceremony on Saturday 16 August will officially kick off the
Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games. The sailing competition begins on 18 August
at 11:00 local time and will conclude on 23 August.
The four YOG Sailing events are:
Boy's Windsurfer - Techno 293
Girl's Windsurfer - Techno 293
Boy's One Person Dinghy - Byte CII
Girl's One Persona Dinghy - Byte CII
The YOG Sailing Competition will consist of an opening series and final race.
The format will be fleet racing but slalom racing may be run for the Boy's
and Girl's Windsurfers if the weather conditions are suitable.
Attention Sailing Organizations & PR Agencies:
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