Dow makes history for Cayman in Canada

| 13/02/2010

(CNS): The first ever Cayman Islands Winter Olympian was flying the country’s flag into the history books last night when Dow Travers (22) entered the stadium in Vancouver as Cayman’s sole representative in the 2010 Winter Olympics. Travers will be competing on 21 February in the men’s Giant Slalom in Whistler. Taking part in the opening ceremony, Dow marched ahead of a small delegation, which included his coach/technician Eugene Bridgewater and Cayman’s chef de mission, David Carmichael.

Although Dow was born in Cayman he obviously did not learn to ski here (while Mount Trashmore might offer the height the surface presents a problem) but on a vacation in Colorado with his dad, Anthony Travers, Chair of the CI Stock Exchange and Cayman Finance.

The glittering ceremony in which Dow made Cayman’s  Winter Olympics debut was sadly overshadowed by the death of 21-year-old Georgian luger, Nodar Kumaritashvili, whose fatal high-speed crash at the Whistler Sliding Centre happened just hours earlier.

Among the hundreds of Olympic athletes marching on Friday evening, Travers has already stood out according various media reports as his route to the 2010 winter games has been uncommon compared to his competitors being the only entrant from the Caribbean in his particular discipline and one of only a handful of athletes from warm climates. Coming from such a tropical climate and ending up with a passion for a snow sport has drawn considerable interest in the Olympic Village.

"The grass is always greener," the Ivy League student said in an interview with The Canadian Press. "When you’re in the cold, you want the warm. When you’re in the warm, you want the cold. I very diligently hunt out snow every year – go down to Chile in the summer and the Alps usually in the spring and then Colorado (in winter). And now here."

Travers participated in his first race when he was 14 but has been driven to master the sport ever since. The Cayman skier took last year off school to work to qualify for the Olympics and accomplished his goal at a race in Antillanca, Chile. Travers finished 65th at the World Championship and said he’s aiming to improve on that ranking during the Olympic giant slalom. "Basically, I’d just like to put everything down on the hill that I can and leave nothing behind so I have no regrets and make my country proud," he said.

Travers is not the only Caribbean skier at the games, as cross-country skier Tucker Murphy is there for Bermuda and Errol Kerr will ski in the Alpine events for Jamaica. The famous Jamaican bobsled team failed to qualify. Robel Teklemariam from Ethiopia, another hot climate competitor, will be competing in the men’s cross-country skiing event. With no word for snow in his native language, Teklemariam goes by "Beredoe Shartate", which is loosely translated to mean "ice slider".

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Will every nay-sayer please shut up

    Where is your National Pride?  You should be proud of the accomplishment of our fellow countryman, especially in a sport that is not typical of Caribbean countries. 

    The hat was a symbol of our heritage yet you’re concerned with the fashion statement it’s making.

    And in regards to the complaints of the Preimer being in attendance.  First and foremost recognize that he is the leader of of country.  Regardless of your opinons on his politics there is a level of respect that should be keep for him or for any other who carries that title.  His attendence only shows the pride our country has in our athletic. Please turn the focus back on who deserves it; our Olympian Dow.

    I for one was proud to see our flag being waved with pride.  Dow know that many of your countrymen who are proud of you and who support you completely.  Best of Luck in your pursuit.  You’ve made your country proud

  2. Anonymous says:

    Dow mi boy… Don’t worry Bobo, some of us are rooting for you 100%.

    There is just no pleasing some people.

  3. Freaked31 says:

    Good luck  Dow while im not a fan of the sport i appreciate what you are doing on behalf of the Cayman Islands!





  4. Anthony Travers says:

    For the record, 

    1) Dow and his brother Dean ski for CICASS under the designation CAY in international events.CICASS  is the Cayman organisation registered with the FIS (International Federation de Ski). The FIS   regulates the technical aspects of all domestic and international ski competition including the World Championships and the Olympics The FIS operates the points system on which start position in all FIS races and qualification to the World Championships and the Olympics is based. 

    2).The entire cost of operation and the  training programme of CICASS  has been  privately funded for over a decade including attendance at the Junior World Championships 2006,  the World Championships 2009 the Junior Olympics 2008 and 2009 and all Summer and Winter training programs .The entire cost of Dow Travers attendance at the Olympics and that of his Coach and the CICASS executive (me and my wife) and our waxing adviser (Dean) including provision of all equipment , transportation of all skis, timing gear and training  gates  has been born by CICASS and CICASS sponsors.All technical aspects of Dow’s attendance  training and competition  remain under the direct control of CICASS through its Coach Gene Bridgewater who is seconded  by arrangement with Aspen Valley Ski Club  to CICASS for the duration of the Olympics. The only costs of Dow’s attendance in Vancouver  which have not been borne by CICASS are the return economy airfare of Dow and his Coach to Vancouver which is covered by grant from the International Olympic Committee and has been paid directly by CIOC.


    3).CICASS is limited by the FIS and its charter  to admitting  Caymanian athletes  Qualification for  the Olympics requires a Cayman Islands passport.

    3)  The Cayman Islands Olympic Committee (CIOC) controls all aspects of attendance at the Vancouver  Olympics including all representation,travel arrangements and accreditations and the outfits.  .CICASS has not been advised and we do not have the slightest idea as to: 

    3.1)whatever grants CIOC may have received from the  International Olympic Committee or other bodies  in respect of the attendance by a CICASS athlete at the Vancouver Olympics

    3.2) The amount of money raised by CIOC fundraisers in relation to the Vancouver Olympics or how or on whom those monies have been spent.

    3.3)The size of the CIOC delegation or monies expended by CIOC on attendance by its board members and appointees and others at the Vancouver Olympics .The CIOC board  representatives and others  are accommodated in Vancouver  but we do not know at whose expense. The CICASS team are in Whistler accommodated  at their own expense. Dow and his coach  Gene are in the Olympic Village at Whistler  at the expense of the Vancouver organisers.


    Anthony Travers

    Chairman CICASS

    • inside job says:

      kudos to tony travers for standing up and replying to all of the meat heads here although he shouldnt have to.

      you sir, represent this island well and for any real caymanian and anybody that cares about the future of this island, we salute your service.

      i will be cheering for dow on the 21st like most people here.

      for all the nutjobs using this as an opportunity to blast mac, you are simply disenfranchised. get off your behinds and do something positive.


      GO DOW GO

    • Anonymous says:

      so who else is a member of this elite sports association ? 



      • Anonymous says:

         I imagine any Caymanian with talent on skis or snowboard who is prepared to train and ski race or snowboard competitively could no doubt also join

  5. Pullin Out says:

    I often times wondered exactly where my thousands of dollars of donations to the Olympic Committee went. Now that I know, I don’t think I will be sponsoring any more "Jollies" for the Committee Members.

    • Anonymous says:

      You probably also contributed to any Valentines night dinners they chose to have !!

    • Anonymous says:

      I seriously doubt that you contributed thousands of dollars to the Olympic committee. Your attitude does not seem to be that of one with a charitable soul. If you were really someone who has contributed thousands of dollars then you would know that athletes don’t travel to major sporting events on their own.

    • Pending says:

      Have you ever heard of any athlete going to any sort of internatinal sporting event alone, clearly you have never watched the opening ceremonies of any such event before…

  6. Anonymous says:

    For clarification- the straw hats that so many here have made rude comments about were provided to demonstrate part of Cayman’s heritage, they are homemade thatch hats from East End!  The Cayman pin features a Stingray gliding above winter ski’s as well as our national crest.  The Olympic Team uniform is turning heads in the Athletes Village and people are very welcoming and pleased to have us here.  It is just ashame that some people here are not equally proud.

    • Anonymous says:

      I do not care too much about what was worn or how they looked, I am much more concerned about the waste of money ONCE AGAIN by the udp government! Why in hell is the premier wasting money on a vacation trip to the winter Olympics? Afterall, it was the premier who proclaimed that Cayman is bankrupt, & he continues to say so. How can he justify wasting more money on luxury travel if we are bankrupt? I think it is very selfish of the premier & his large entourage of hanger-ons, spending thousands of dollars on air travel, first class accomodation & all the other ‘trappings’ that come with this vacation. I am fed up with the UDP saying that we are bankrupt & yet continually overspending on trips & ‘perks’ for themselves. I support everyone who says that we must act now. It is no longer any good to simply talk. They are taking us for fools. They do as they want because they know that all we do is talk. It is time to act, & I am 100% behind anyone willing to get up & act. The UDP must be stopped now! Let us act before it is too late. The Cayman people are crying. Let us all stop crying & do something, let us act now!

      • Anonymous says:

        Wow what sour grapes!  It so burns some people that Mr. Bush is Premier.  It is so evident that it simply makes the previous poster look ignorant and jealous. Iam sure you, who probably have never travelled outside your district, believe that a sportsman should travel alone, know everything about everything and not take anyone to support him or her.  I for one believe it is excellent public relations for Cayman having seen this young man on tv worldwide. Yeap, guess that’s your kind of thinking and maybe that’s why the previous government was so bad too. It was that kind of closed mindedness that put our country in this financial situation we are in.  I shutter to think of our financial situation with the PPM at the helm. Some of them PPM ministers are even afraid of flying! I guess they would conduct their business worldwide by telephone and email, neither of which they ever bothered to answer while in power.  The only way to contac them was if you bumped into them at the popular North Side water holes.

        • Anonymous says:

          The point is they are riding on the crest of a wave financed by Tony Travers re the coaching , airfares , ski passes that he has paid for over the years  and through the hard work of Dow Travers. 

          However I am sure Mac & Co are putting in an olympic effort in eating , drinking , socialising and shopping 


    • Tiggy says:

       Y’all should had save the straw hats for the summer Olympics man!  

  7. Rasha says:

    They all had look so stupid up there with that straw hat on at the winter games.  I also felt ashame to had been a Caymanian with them representing us.  Next time call the fashion police for help.


    • CaymanLover says:

      Rasha – you should be ashamed of your grammar!  The straw hats were obviously an homage to his/our Caymanian heritage.  Your stupid comments and lack of ability to string two sentences together properly are an homage to ignorance.

      Best of luck Dow! 

    • Short Pants says:

      Oh leave him alone Rasha. On the plus side, at least he didn’t look as stupid as the guy from bermuda.

      • Anonymous says:

        I personally thought the Bermuda team looked great – it was clear to all where they came from the minute they entered the stadium

  8. Anonymous says:



    The question is not how many members of the Cayman Olympic traveled to Vancouver but who paid for their trip. We need full accounting from the Olympic Committee so  we can  all  see where the fund raising isactually spent. We know the money didn’t go to train this althlete so does the Olympic Committee exist to send its committee members to Olympic events?.

  9. Cicero says:

    Can someone explain to me why it takes 17 persons to accompany Dow to the olympics including our beloved leader and his family. Surely he should be here to resolve our critical financial problems. After all he is the Minister of Finance not the Minister for Sport.

    • Anonymous says:

      A lot of rich people are in Vancouver for the games. One of them might be interested in purchasing a turtle farm or a dump with a view.

      In any event, the number of people that he finds in Vancouver to invest in Cayman will not be any less than the number he found on his recent world tour.

    • Down to Earth says:

      Just a rich mans hobby and to have 17 people as an entourage for 1 athlete who is going to enjoy his hobby at our expense, at a time we are BANKRUPT, is outrageous.

      Can we be told who is responsible for the Government officials who will be "vacationing" for a week to watch one race that will take a few seconds and please tell us it is not us, the people of Cayman!

      I suppose its just another excuse for Mac to spend money on himself travelling 1st class, money that Cayman does not have.

      • O'Really says:

        "Just a rich man’s hobby". It may seem like that when you live in the Cayman Islands, but if you live in the northern USA, Canada or in fact any country which has a cold winter, there is nothing elitist about winter sports. Fishing in the Caribbean sounds exotic and expensive to someone living in the Arctic circle. Is this simply a rich man’s sport?  

        I doubt that the Cayman government has contributed much, if anything to Dow’s expenses, so don’t worry about him having dipped into your pocket.

        I do agree that 17 delegates is ridiculous, but this is Cayman. Whenever does anyone shun the limelight here, particulalry politicians? Again, I very much doubt that Dow had any say in who or how many decided to bask in the glow of his achievement.

        I assume from your indignation about government expenditure that you are Caymanian. I also assume this because your post displays a typical lack of understanding of how big and diverse the world really is. To quote Eddie Izzard, " do you know there are other countries out there?"

        • Anonymous says:

          It is a fact that  skiing is an expensive hobby no matter where you live as lift passes aint cheap neither is equipment . At professional level they have to chase the snow as well so in the summer it maybe off to Chile etc . Dow himself has said that coaching is $200 p/day as well as the ten of thousands of dollars  that his father has spent on flights accomadation lift passes etc which is his choice as its his cash however very few people are in that fortunate position.

          . So it hasnt cost Cayman anything – its probably more appropriate for Cayman going forward to support sports that everyone can take part in ie track and field , swimming , cycling etc Jamaica has one of the best track and field teams in the world why doesnt Cayman focus on that – start with the kids when they are young and invest at that point .

          • Pending says:

            Cayman has always invested in swimming, track and field and countless other team sports, do you ever read the newspaper or watch the local news?

            Evidently, you don’t seem to understand the difference between Jamaica and Cayman when it comes to "TEAM" sports….Jamaica has how many of millions to choose from, Cayman has a few thousand.

            Cayman will never execel in any team sport on a world stage, we simply do not have the pool to choose from such as other countries like Jamaica. Cayman will only ever do well in solo sports / events that do not involve teams.

            In the past, we have had countless Olympians from swimming (solo events) and track and field (solo events), but when it has come to "team" sports we have only been able to get so far….Football which seems to be a well that the Govt. is willing to throw money into, will never get Cayman any sort of international recognition unless one lucky soul manages to catch the eye of some foreign manager, and the chances of that are the equivalent of winning the lottery or being struck by lightning.

            Individuals will bring Cayman recognition and glory, FACT.

          • O'Really says:

            You’ve obviously never been skiing or you would realise that the majority of young people engaged in the sport are far from wealthy, hence the term ski-bums. In fact this holds true for all age groups I’ve ever encountered. Yes, one can be wealthy and pursue the sport, but it is not a pre-requisite.

            The costs of training to Olympic standard is a different matter, but who in their right mind would think otherwise? If Dow’s family chose to support him in chasing his dream, what business of is it yours? Or do Caymanians now have the right to tell paper Caymanians how they may spend their wealth?

            Since it has not cost Cayman anything, at least for Dow’s involvement in competition, Cayman has had good exposure for nothing. Do you have a problem with getting something for nothing?

            While I would not argue with the general concept underlying your last paragraph in terms of where public funding of sports should be directed, it is not relevant to Dow. For the most part an individual gets little choice in the natural athletic gifts with which they are born. If you’re a skier, your a skier; you can’t run the 100 metres in 10 seconds simply because you can ski fast down a hill. Should athletes whose talent lies outside the mainstream abandon their dreams because they don’t fit your idea of an appropriate sport for Cayman?

    • Anonymous says:

      Thats simple. Once Mac sells off all of the government assets there will be too much money. So he needs to waste some now to ensure that the government doesn’t end up with a surplus. Also he may find a gold medal athlete that he could give status to and then he could return home with Cayman’s first olympic gold.

    • Anonymous says:

      I can assure you that the government is not paying for McKeeva and his family to travel to the Olympics. Don’t believe me? Then file a request with the FOI office and find out for yourself. Why is it that certain people seem to believe that the Government always pays for any overseas trips by members of the UDP Government? Like I said, check with the FOI office, then shut up.

      • Anonymous says:

        so if Mac is not on official business ie not representing Cayman but instead on a family vacation why would he be in the VIP section at the opening ceremony watching

        • Anonymous says:

          Because he is a Very Important Person! Just to remind you, he is the Premier of these islands. That’s not a political statement, it’s a fact!

  10. Beachboi says:

    Yes it made me proud to see my Country represented at the Olympics, but whoever approved the garb worn by our representatives as they entered the opening ceremony should be relieved of their duties immediately.  I mean come on!  Khaki pants and a dark coat with a thatched hat!!  That made me feel shame.  They could not have done any worse if they were wearing turtle shells on their heads.  The coats could have at least been something bright and memorable and I’m not too sure that those thatch hats kept their noggins warm.  Other athletes and their delegations were attired as they should have been, but………well lets just say that this Caymanian felt a sense of shame when I saw that get up.  As an after thought I think I remember seeing the Cayman crest on the coat, but other than that our delegation could have been from a tribe of bedouins from the dessert rather than a lush tropical island paradise.

    Just my opinion!!!

  11. Anonymous says:

    Dow, Good Luck from your home country the "Cayman Islands". We are all very proud of you !!!!  

    • Pending says:

      Good Luck Dow from all your brethren at the Cayman Islands Rugby Club!!!! Will be watching and toasting you big man!!!!!!!

  12. Darlene says:

    Dow Travers have made us all proud to carry the Cayman Flag and enter the games.  I watched with my heart full, so happy for his family and him.  This is just a great thing for all of us Caymanians.  All the best in the coming week to you.  I bet you had many questions asked where is the Cayman Islands and what do they know about snow.  Keep up your spirits.  We re all watcing out for you.  I will make sure and watch on 21st.


    • Anonymous says:

      I had one such conversation with an American couple in Eats this morning. They thought it was so awesome that Cayman had an athlete in the Winter Olympics.

      I am elated and will be cheering my heart out for Dow Travers for Alpine Skiing and Errol Kerr (Jamaica – for the Freestyle Skiing.

      It does my heart good to see people proud of the fact that this young man is proud to be Caymanian and has chosen to wave the Cayman flag high. Get behind him and support him. Does it really make sense to be arguing the fact that he isn’t based here??? He wouldn’t be at the level of his sport if he was! 

      Errol Kerr is a Californian and his dad is Jamaican. He is obviously proud of his Jamaican roots and wants to wave the Jamaican flag high, so… as a Jamaican, I support him 100%.

      Let’s get behind our own and support them!

      Against the odds… Caribbean pride!

  13. Anonymous says:

    All the best Dow!!!!

  14. Just Wonderin' says:

    1. How was his dad’s view of the ceremony from the stands?

    2. How many "Delgates" were in the VIP section and who exactly were they?

  15. Anonymous says:

    Way to go! make us proud local boy.

  16. Lachlan MacTavish says:

     It was a proud moment to see Dow Travers carrying the flag on network television. Thank-you for representing The Cayman Islands and good luck.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Chef de mission? What’s that? Someone who knows how to prepare turtle meat?

    This has to be an April Fools, surely?

    • anonymous says:

      I think you are the fool here. Why didn’t you Google it before making idiotic comments here? JFGI!


      • Anonymous says:

        Whats really funny is if you bing David Carmichael.

        The first entry


        David Carmichael is an American chef, specializing in pastry. Bornand raised in New York, he has run several pastry kitchens in many of Manhattan’s finest restaurants.

    • Anonymous says:


      I am going to assume that you are a FAT (not an acronym) miserable individual, that have no idea the importance of diet (not to mention at an Olympic Athlete level). 

      But forgive me – I will withdraw the FAT assumption (perhaps, you are a streamline in your physical prowess, and an "eye candy" for the beholding).

      It sure is a pity that after all careful consideration I cannot separate you from being a "Miserable Individual" that cannot see the National Pride in all of this – but find it relevant criticize  Dow (our OLYMPIAN!) having someone to insure that he is getting the very needed proper nutrition.

      My other regret is that I could not literally express on this forum how I really want to tell you to go “_ _ _ _ yourself”.

      CNS: I really hope this is a wind up comment! In case it isn’t, the chef de mission is the official leader of the Olympic team, not the cook.

      • Chef de mission says:

        ROTFLMAO. I posted the original comment in jest and your comeback was simply brilliant. Perhaps you should help Carmichael with the conch stew?