Page 1


BARBADOS 2 0 1 2


w w w. s p o r t i n g b a r b a d o s . co m

so much more than an extraordinary vacation home Spectacular location. Unparalleled residences. World-class amenities and services. Profitable rental pool. Proven track record. Smart investment. From US$445,000 – $2,300,000. Shared ownership from US$10,000.

Visit us. Come see for yourself. Tours daily from 10:00am to 4:00pm. 246.423.6220



Contents 8 - Introduction

108 - Hockey

10 - Foreword

114 - Athletics

14 - Sporting Calendar

120 - Football

20 - Sporting Contacts

126 - Diving

26 - Barbados!

128 - Sports Round Up

42 - Cricket 54 - Golf 68 - Horse racing 78 - Polo 88 - Motorsport 98 - Rugby 102 - sailing

Scan the code above with your smart phone to visit the new

Credits Publisher – Hiltop Publications Ltd, 11 Cottage Ridge, St George, Barbados, BB19071 Tel (246) 228-9122 Fax (246) 228-0243 Email Editor – Pamela L Hiles Editorial – J Clarence Hiles, Pamela Hiles, Mark Wheeler, Clare Hiles, Martyn Norsworthy Advertising – Pamela L Hiles Photography – Peter Marshall, Barbados Tourism Authority, Diamonds International, Joanne Spencer, Virgin Atlantic Airways, Michael Codogan, Andrew Western, Sandy Lane Hotel, Sandy Lane Charitable Trust, Apes Hill Club, Fiona Kinch, Mona Walker, Natalie

Manning, Ann Stoute, Martin Bynoe, Pamela Hiles, Clarence Hiles, Tides Restaurant, Barbados Game Fishing Association, Peter Warren, Earthworks Pottery, Alric Gaskin, Flower Forest, Cockspur Beach Club, Concorde Experience, Himal Reece, Devi Nath. Design and Art Direction – Neil Barnard at 809 Design Associates, Barbados Distribution – Hiltop Publications Ltd, Pronto Marketing – Barbados CITO Distribution (UK) Printed in the UK The Material and editorial contained in this publication was deemed correct at the time of going to print but may be subject to change thereafter. No part of this publication should be reproduced without the consent of the publishers.

Copyright 2012 Sporting Barbados

Visit the new • 4



Introduction We live and work in tough times. Few people in the tourism business have escaped the ravages of global economic meltdown, but the successful players in the business have adapted and bounced back in the face of adversity. This positive approach is foremost in our minds in the 15th edition of Sporting Barbados because we are extremely grateful to the advertisers and contributors who have continued their support for this unique sports tourism publication that continues to bring people to Barbados. Tourism is the lifeblood of the Barbados economy in much the same way as marketing is the lifeblood of most businesses. Poor tourism performance could cause irreparable damage to the welfare of our island, and the businesses that don’t market themselves will unfortunately suffer a similar demise. Barbados has a special status in the tough world of international hospitality and our beautiful tropical island offers the dream holiday in the minds of millions of people worldwide. We have sand, sea and sunshine to die for, but behind our three best known assets we have some wonderful sporting and leisure attributes, and a lovely environment to visit, or to set up a second home. Sports tourism is a niche market that continues to expand and develop as holidaymakers broaden their horizons and look for added value on their

vacation. Barbados will rival any destination for the range and quality of its sporting and leisure assets, and in the case of cricket, golf and watersports we are truly world-class. We sincerely hope through the pages of Sporting Barbados 2012 and our excellent website that you will find an attraction to bring you to our beautiful island and the opportunity to live the dream. A special thank you to Ministers Sealy and Lashley for their kind Forewords and to the many people who sent editorial, photographs and information to make Sporting Barbados 2012 so comprehensive. We are also grateful to the Barbados Development Corporation and the Barbados Tourism Authority for their support and to Minister Sealy for launching our new website at World Travel Market in London in November where the theme on the Barbados stand was appropriately – “Year of Sport – from Grass-roots to World Class”. That’s exactly how we see Sporting Barbados 2012- a unique world-class sports tourism publication with a special message. See you here soon!

Pamela Hiles Editor

Visit the new • 8



Foreword The Hon. Richard Sealy, M.P., Minister of Tourism

Dear Friends of Barbados, I am delighted to have been given the opportunity to address you in the 2012 edition of Sporting Barbados. Trends in tourism over the last decade indicate that sports related tourism has emerged as a very significant element in the world of touristic activity. The promotion of sports tourism in Barbados requires a well-organised and sustainable multi-year marketing campaign, which incorporates advertisements on international sports television channels and in magazines and newspapers. Since 1998, Barbados has benefitted from the production of the Sporting Barbados magazine with its comprehensive showcasing of the myriad sporting and leisure activities available in our island. We are now witnessing the fact that sun and sea vacations, traditionally the mainstay of the travel and tourism industry, is being replaced by sports and activity-related vacations, as well as a new kind of tourist who is keen to attend or take part in the burgeoning international calendar of sporting events. Sports tourism, for many years the “sleeping giant” of travel, has started to play a catalytic role in sparking tourism globally. This development is due in part to the

exponential growth of the international media, particularly television, to cover topquality sports events around the world. With its year round temperate climate and abundant tropical delights, Barbados continues to play host to many a sports enthusiast and sports events. Our sports tourism initiatives recognise the unique opportunity that exists for Barbados to capture the attention of the world’s sports market by becoming a venue for highquality profile events. Over the last six years, we have demonstrated our ability to host major events and in so doing have generated new tourism business as well as to achieve widespread international recognition. The Ministry of Tourism, through its Barbados Tourism Authority (BTA), maintains on-going partnerships with many major organizational and developmental entities to further its mandate of bringing visitors to the island to view and take part in sporting events. Such partnerships also exist with local sporting bodies and key partners, such as the Barbados Olympic Association, the Barbados Cricket Association and the National Sports Council, to ensure the successful staging of regional and international events. Some of the world’s biggest and most prestigious sporting events in various disciplines, including golf, cricket, boxing and water-sports have been successfully hosted by Barbados; including the PGA World Cup in 2006, the ICC World Cup in 2007 and in 2010 the ICC World Twenty/20 Championship, the AIBA Women World Championships and the Sentebale Polo Cup. The Government’s strong support for the expansion of sports tourism is demonstrated through the establishment of a Sports Tourism Department at the BTA. The work of the Department is complemented by that of our National Hero, the Rt. Excellent Sir Garfield Sobers – renowned worldwide as the greatest all round cricketer ever – as Barbados’

ambassador for sports. Government has further demonstrated its commitment to the development of sports tourism by designating in each of its source markets an officer of the BTA to deal specifically with sports tourism matters. Currently, the Government of Barbados is receiving technical assistance from the Commonwealth Secretariat in designing and implementing a Sports Tourism Strategy for the country. This strategy will recommend the actions required to improve the enabling environment for developing in Barbados a strong niche in sports tourism. The expected areas of action will include the policy and regulatory framework, the investment climate and the auxiliary services considered important to provide support to sports tourism. Through the development of a Sports Tourism Strategy that will set the parameters for enhancing the collaboration between tourism and sports, this Barbadian niche tourism product can be harnessed and expanded so that the island can benefit from this everincreasing multi-million dollar industry. I take this opportunity to congratulate Pamela and Clarence Hiles on the production of the 2012 edition of the iconic Sporting Barbados magazine. I invite readers of this beautifully appointed and unique sports tourism publication to experience the real thing by visiting Barbados to take part in sporting events, relax on our beautiful beaches, explore our attractions, discover our history and culture, enjoy our music and entertainment and explore our business and investment opportunities while enjoying our world renowned hospitality.

The Hon. Richard Sealy, M.P., Minister of Tourism

Visit the new • 10



Foreword The Hon. Stephen A. Lashley, M.P., Minister of Family, Culture, Sports & Youth The Ministry of Family, Culture, Sports and Youth applauds the principals of Sporting Barbados on yet another excellent sports tourism publication. This informative magazine is particularly relevant at this time, as the Government of Barbados focuses on presenting its diversified sports tourism product to the world. Among the disciplines highlighted during 2011 were swimming, motor racing, golf, squash, cricket and badminton, for which regional or international championships were hosted in Barbados. This excitement was complemented by the outstanding accomplishments by our swimmers, squash and track and field athletes and crowned by the Special Olympics team, who were phenomenal with all of its members medalling at the 2011 World Special Olympics in Greece. As a sporting and holiday destination that caters to the amateur, professional, friends, families and lovers of sports, Barbados complements its sumptuous cuisines, beautiful weather and sparkling beaches with an extensive repertoire of sports attractions and facilities. The

coming additions of a new athletics track at the National Stadium and a Formula Three Racing Facility at Bushy Park are expected to attract persons seeking an exhilarating experience. While some focus will now be on the 2012 London Olympics, the excitement in Barbados continues with an international menu of the Banks Hockey Festival, Mount Gay Regatta, various Polo Cups and the Sir Garfield International Golf Tournament. The historic Kensington Oval will also be ablaze March/April and July/August when the Australian and New Zealand cricket teams display the skills for which they are renowned. Once again I congratulate the publishers of Sporting Barbados on a job well done, as we look forward to sharing a memorable experience of sports in Barbados.

The Hon. Stephen A. Lashley, M.P., Minister of Family, Culture, Sports & Youth

Visit the new • 12

2 0 1 2





Polo – Holders, Clifton, Apes Hill, Lion Castle Hike Barbados – 246 426 2421 Horse racing at the Garrison Equestrian - see local papers Rugby –at the Garrison Sailing – Mount Gay Rum Round Barbados Regatta 19th Jan Squash - Inaugural Barbados Open Team Squash Championship – 16-22 Jan Sandy Lane Trust Golf Tournament

Polo – Holders, Clifton, Apes Hill, Lion Castle Canada & USA vs. Barbados – 9-13 February Cheshire vs Barbados – 26 Feb-4 March Waterman Festival at Silver Rock Sandy Lane Gold Cup Festival Holetown Festival Hike Barbados Horse Racing at the Garrison Golf – Rockley Golf Course Open Diamonds international Charity Golf Rugby – at the Garrison Motor Racing at Bushy Park



Cricket – 14 March-23 April – Digicel Series Australia vs West Indies Cricket – Sri Lanka Women tour to the West Indies Horse Racing at the Garrison – Sandy Lane Gold Cup Day – 3 March Polo – Holders, Clifton, Apes Hill, Lion Castle Holder’s Season Equestrian – see local papers Tennis – Barbados Junior International Tennis Tournament (ITF Junior circuit) Oistins Fish Festival Golf – Royal Westmoreland Ladies Golf Open Football – The Barbados Cup Golf – The Rockley Cup Fishing – Barbados Fishing Tournament Rugby – at the Garrison Motor Racing at Bushy Park Special Olympics National Games 13 March

Cricket at Kensington Oval – Digicel Series – Australia vs West Indies Polo Holders – Clifton, Apes Hill and Lion Castle Clifton B’dos Open Battle of The Sexes – 10-17 April Horse Racing at the Garrison – Barbados Guineas Golf – Sir Garfield Sobers Festival of Golf Championships – 26-28 April Swimming

Visit the new • 14

2 0 1 2





Watersports Month in Barbados Polo at Apes Hill, Holders, Lion Castle and Clifton Banks Barbados international Masters Football Celtic Festival Mount Gay Rum International Regatta 17-20 Diamonds International/Sandy Lane/Rotary West Charity Golf Classic Rugby- at the Garrison Horse Racing at the Garrison Motor Racing at Bushy Park

Sol Rally Barbados June 9-10 Sailing - Barbados International Open J 24 Championships 16-17 Horse Racing at the Garrison Bajan Unifest University Sporting Festival Barbados Water Festival United Barbados Open Golf Championship



Start of Crop Over Festival Schools Summerfest Sir Garfield Sobers International Schools Cricket Tournament Horse Racing at the Garrison Motor Racing at Bushy Park

Horse Racing - United Insurance Derby Day at the Garrison Savannah Banks International Hockey Festival – 19-25 August Surfing Golf – CIBC FCIB Golf Open at Rockley Golf Club

Visit the new • 16

Elegance is an attitude “It’s time to give a little bit of your time to others.”

Andre Agassi

Tel: 430-2400 s 1 (800) 51-JEWEL

The Longines Column-Wheel Chronograph

The Cruise Terminal, Bridgetown; #8 Broad Street, Bridgetown; The Tamarind Hotel, St. James; Grantley Adams International Airport Limegrove Lifestyle Centre, Holetown, St. James


2 0 1 2




Surfing – Bathsheba Soup Bowl Horse Racing at the Garrison Motor Racing at Bushy Park

Pro-Am Cricket Festival National Surfing Championships Volleyball – B’dos National Championships Sizzlin Sand Beach Volleyball National Championships Motor Racing at Bushy Park Hockey – Vintage Hockey Carnival 21-28 Oct



Nation Fun Walk Cricket – The CLOBI Cup International Master Cricket – Kensington Oval Independence Pro Surfing Championships Horse Racing at the Garrison The RBTT Golf Classic at Barbados Golf Club Motor Racing at Bushy Park Brydens Barbados Darts Festival – at St. Lawrence Gap, Ch. Ch Sizzling Sands Beach Volleyball, Brighton Beach Sun, Sea and Slams International Bridge Festival

Run Barbados Festival Polo – Holders, Clifton, Apes Hill, Lion Castle. Horse Racing at the Garrison Diamonds International Challenge over 3 weekends Motor Racing at Bushy Park


Visit the new • 18



Sporting Contacts RUGBY: BARBADOS RUGBY CLUB President: George Nicholson

BALL SPORTS CRICKET: BARBADOS CRICKET ASSOCIATION President: Joel Garner CEO: Roland St Clair Toppin Tel: 246 4262018 Add: Kensington Oval, Fontabelle, St. Michael BASKETBALL: BARBADOS AMATEUR BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION President: Carlos Moore II Secretary: Mrs Rosalind Davis Tel: 246 427 6840 Add: Po Box 4, Barbados Olympic Centre, Wildey, St. Michael NETBALL: BARBADOS NETBALL ASSOCIATION President: Octavia Gibson Tel: 246 436 6870 (w) 246 826 4443 (c) Secretary: Alicia Jemmot Tel: 246 418 6415 (w) 246 826 9314 (c) FOOTBALL: BARBADOS FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION President: Ronald Jones Tel: 246 228 1707 Add: Richmond, Welches, St. Michael GOLF: BARBADOS GOLF ASSOCIATION President: Birchmore Griffith Tel: 246 428 7152 Secretary: Trenton Weekes Tel: 246 826 3626

HOCKEY: BARBADOS HOCKEY FEDERATION INC c/o Barbados Olympic Association Inc. Olympic Centre Garfield Sobers Sports Complex Wildey, St. Michael, BB15094 Email: - Mr George Bennet - Ms Sharon Estwick Barbados Ball Hockey League Stevar House, Suite 1 Rockley, Christ Church Barbados WI BB15137 VOLLEYBALL: BARBADOS VOLLEYBALL ASSOCIATION President – John Griffith COMBAT GAMES JUDO: BARBADOS JUDO ASSOCIATION President: Hoskins Caddle Tel: 246 436 2608 (h) 246 263 7792 (c) Vice President: Ian Weithers TAEKWONDO: TAEKWONDO ASSOCIATION OF BARBADOS Contact: Master Ronald Philip Tel: 246 8226583/4261998 Add: 13 Draytons Close, Boulevard Rd, Enterprise, Ch Ch KARATE: THE BARBADOS KARATE ASSOCIATION Contact: Peter Warren Tel 246 428 2674 FENCING; THE BARBADOS FENCING CLUB Stephen Sandiford: 232-8783, Ryan Rodriguez: 256-4876, Roslyn Wilson: 230-0999. BAT AND RACKET SPORTS ROAD TENNIS: BARBADOS ROAD TENNIS ASSOCIATION Contact: Dale Clarke Tel: 246 233 8268

TABLE TENNIS: BARBADOS TABLE TENNIS ASSOCIATION President: Keith Neblett Tel: 246 2334909 Secretary: Ms M Felix 246 243 6690 Add: Nursery Drive, Bridgetown, St. Michael BARBADOS TENNIS ASSOCIATION President: Dr Raymond Forde Tel: 246 4275300 SQUASH: BARBADOS SQUASH RACQUET ASSOCIATION President: Craig Archer Tel: 246 2715174 BADMINTON: BARBADOS BADMINTON ASSOCIATION Contact: Mr. Kevin Wood (President) / Mr. Mervyn Gordon (Secretary) Telephone: {President} (246) 4201800(w)/231-7390(c) {Secretary} 4371305(h)/420-1902(w) Address: P.O. Box 659, Bridgetown, Barbados Facebook: Barbados Badminton Player TARGET SPORTS ARCHERY President: John Annel Contact: Judith Magras Tel: 246 437 9479 Add: PO Box 391G, St. George SHOOTING: BARBADOS RIFLE ASSOCIATION President: Michael Holder Secretary: Brian Hennis Tel: 246 428 0158 Add: PO Box 608, Bridgetown, St. Michael KENDAL SPORTING Contact: Richard Bradshaw Tel: 246 437 5306 BARBADOS CLAY TARGET SHOOTING ASSOCIATION Contact: Peter Reece Tel: 246 437 4930 HEALTH AND FITNESS BARBADOS BODY BUILDING AND FITNESS FEDERATION Contact: Shirley Garnes Tel: 246 424 0888 Add: PO Box 383, Bridgetown, St. Michael

Visit the new • 20




YACHTING BARBADOS YACHT CLUB Tel: 246 427 1125 Add: Bay Street, Bridgetown, St. Michael


Barbados Sailing Association P O Box 40 Bridgetown BB11000 Contact – President Peter Thompson Secretary – Penny McIntyre

WARRI Contact: Lee Farnum-Badley badley@sunbeach.,net Tel: 246 432 1292 BRIDGE

SURFING BARBADOS SURFING ASSOCIATION President: Nick Donawa Tel 246 826 7661

TRACK AND FIELD AMATEUR ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION OF BARBADOS President: Ester Maynard Secretary: Catherine Jordan Tel: 246 427 4694/ 246 231 1071 Fax: 246 427 2658

BARBADOS JUNIOR SURFING CLUB President: Alan Burke Tel 246 230 2456 Email WINDSURFING AND WATER FESTIVAL Contact: Brian Talma Tel: 246 428 6596

BARBADOS OLYMPIC ASSOCIATION Contact: Erskine Simmons Tel: 246 429 1998 SPECIAL OLYMPICS (BARBADOS) Chariman Mrs Thelma Brathwaite National Director: Winston Skinner Tel: 246 426 9064




DIVING BARBADOS DIVER’S ASSOCIATION President: Tom Fountain Secretary: Brian Stanley

CYCLING BARBADOS CYCLING UNION Keith Yearwood, President Tel 246 437 1916 c/o Barbados Olympic Association Inc. Olympic Centre,Garfield Sobers Sports Complex Wildey,Bridgetown St. MichaelBB15094

SWIMMING BARBADOS AMATEUR SWIMMING ASSOCIATION President: Sonia O’Neal Tel: 246 429 7946/ 246 434 0523 GAME FISHING BARBADOS GAME FISHING ASSOCIATION Contact: James Pierce Add: PO Box 80, Bridgetown, St. Michael BARBADOS POLO CLUB AT HOLDER’S HILL Tel: 246 432 1802/ 246 230 1308/4375410 CLIFTON POLO CLUB Tel: 246 433 8800/ 246 826 POLO APES HILL POLO CLUB Tel: 246 432 9550/2623270 LION CASTLE POLO CLUB Tel: 246 427 0022 NATIONAL SPORTS COUNCIL Contact: Adrian Donovan Tel: 246 427 1125 NATIONAL STADIUM AT WATERFORD Tel: 246 426 0627 WEST INDIES CRICKET BOARD Tel: 246 425 1093 YMCA Tel: 246 426 3910 YWCA Tel: 246 425 7308 BARBADOS TOURISM AUTHORITY Tel: 246 427 2623 Add: Harbour Road, Bridgetown UK- Canada- Miami- New York- California- BARBADOS NATIONAL TRUST – HIKE BARBADOS Tel 246 436-9033 Email Barbados Hash House Harriers


Visit the new • 22

Hello Virgin Celebrities!

Dubliner Paul Hanby, former England footballer Francis Lee and Mark Hasler of Rockley Golf Club Ex Champion jockey Lester Piggott and Helen Spencer at the Sandy Lane Gold Cup.

Nick Parker, Country Manager Caribbean of Virgin Atlantic and his wife Michelle at SOL Rally Barbados

Michael Carberry of Hampshire Cricket Club with Gemma Lewis (left) and Joanna Robinson at the Crane

Paul Edwards, chef extraordinaire of Nishi Restaurant at Holders Festival

Comedienne Ruby Wax at the Holder’s Festival.

Richard Cozier, CEO Banks Holdings Ltd and his wife Carolyn enjoying Sol Rally Barbados action!

Sir Everton Weekes and Ireland International Cricketer George Dockrell

Claire Jordan, Scotiabank, Robert Clarke, UNIFEM and Robyn Gollop Knight, Rostrevor Apartments at the Run Barbados series.

Rachel Pilgrim, Sales & Marketing Manager, Virgin Atlantic, Neno Skoric of Trident Wines, and wife Gayle at the Sandy Lane Charitable Trust dinner.

Charles Leacock, Director of Public Prosecutions and his wife Betty Jean Leacock, CEO Barbados Golf Club with Starcom Network CEO Vic Fernandes

Philip Spooner, Media Officer, WICB at Kensington Oval.


The Sand, The Sea & The Sunshine The Barbados Hilton Hotel pool and beach

Visit the new • 26


Everyone associates Barbados with sand, sea and sunshine and how right they are! We have been blessed with a beautiful tropical climate, our beaches have pristine white sand and the sea is turquoise blue. The sun rises majestically every day of the year and it sets with just as much aplomb. There’s nothing quite like a Barbados West Coast sunset to end the day. Barbados also has a rich green hinterland that comes from the much-

needed tropical showers. Rain is vital to the lush tropical landscape and it generally comes in short bursts. Our island is small, barely 166 square miles, and the most popular beaches are on the West and South Coasts. The rugged North and East Coasts are spectacularly beautiful, in stark contrast to the lazy tranquil West Coast. There are no private beaches in Barbados and it costs nothing to drop your towel on the sand and plunge into that warm inviting surf. Swimming is safe at the popular beaches but everyone should be cognizant of the prevailing weather conditions and take heed of the red flags that warn of inclement conditions and dangerous currents. Many of the beaches are protected by


reefs close to the shore and this makes it ideal for snorkeling and watersports. Soft tropical breezes enhance tanning but always be careful and use protection as the sun is hot and make sure to cover up if you are not used to it. Many of the popular beaches offer loungers and umbrellas at a modest cost, and toilets and refreshments are usually in close proximity. Most of the remote beaches are lightly populated and while beaches are generally safe, everyone needs to exercise their own due diligence and personal security. The sun rises just before six almost every morning and sets just after six most days. In between you have over 12 hours to enjoy the sand, sea and sunshine of our beautiful tropical island.


The People, The Personalities & Rihanna! Sir Michael Stoute


As a small nation we are very proud of the people who have put us on the map. They come in all shapes and sizes, in both black and white, and they cover young and old, rich and poor. Some of our superstars are household names all over the world, but just as important we have lovely people who by their everyday actions make Barbados a lovely place to live or visit. Yes, we are laidback in the true Caribbean style, but we have men and women of outstanding pedigree who have been exceptional Barbadians. The Government of Barbados names ten outstanding Barbadians as National Heroes several years ago and they remain the pinnacle of recognition of outstanding service to their homeland. They come from a wide section of society and include the great Sir Garfield Sobers, the only living National Hero. Sir Garry is perhaps the best known of our famous cricketers, and although West Indian cricket has lost some of its glitz in modern times, the sporting world remembers with great affection the exploits of the 3ws Sir Everton Weekes, Sir Frank Worrell and Sir Clyde Walcott. The cricket world also remembers Sir Conrad Hunte, Malcolm Marshall, Desmond Haynes, Gordon

Greenidge and Joel Garner, cricket superstars who made Barbados the most fertile nursery for Cricket talent in the world. Other sporting personalities who have done Barbados proud include Sir Michael Stoute, arguably the greatest horse trainer of all time, and outstanding athletes Obadele Thompson and Ryan Brathwaite. But without doubt the biggest personality to hail from Barbados in recent times is international singing phenomenon Rihanna who has taken the music world by storm in the past few years. Rihanna is the darling of the nation and her ‘LOUD’ concert at the Kensington Oval last August was a sell-out with over 28,000 people present. A local girl with exceptional talent, she has never forgotten her roots and has pledged her continued support for Barbados in the future. Rihanna’s success has in some ways overshadowed another of the island’s outstanding young singers – Shontelle. She’s up there with the best in the business and who knows if the Cover Drive band are not going to be our next international musical superstars? We may have only 280,000 people but we have produced some amazing talent!

Visit the new • 28

Cover Drive


History, Culture & Heritage English Captain John Powell is recognized as the person who first raised the British flag at Holetown in 1625, although the first settlers didn’t arrive until two years later. Now almost 400 years later, Barbados is a thriving multinational independent colony with over 280,000 inhabitants. The British influence has been retained in place names and heritage, but the modern Barbadians have their own identity, culture and allegiance. The British weren’t the first inhabitants of Barbados as the Arawaks and Caribs found the island in their long canoes many centuries earlier. And like most Caribbean islands the influence of the slave trade from Africa combined with European settlers to produce an African/European/Caribbean mixed culture that continues to evolve in modern times. The British heritage is also remembered in military terms. St Ann’s Fort, Needham’s Point and the Garrison area are living proof of the strong military presence of bygone years that ensured Barbados was never invaded by hostile European enemies. Many gallant young servicemen and women perished in defence of the island, and the military cemetery close to the Hilton Hotel is a testimony to their valour and courage. The Dutch, French,

Spanish and Portuguese fleets pounded Barbados over many years but the heavy artillery of Needham’s Point stood firm. Little wonder there are so many cannons spread all over the island, including the impressive National Collection overlooking the racecourse at the Garrison. The signal Station at Gun Hill in St George is also another relic of British military presence and with the famous white lion sculpture, they are popular tourist attractions. Barbados has grown as a nation since it became an independent state in 1966, but it has never lost its Britishness. Many ex-pats own second homes on the island and British tourists form the biggest percentage of overseas visitors every year. It is a heritage that has stood the test of time, and while Barbadians look towards an independent culture in the modern world, everyone is cognizant of our history and the part played by our predecessors in carving it.

Visit the new • 3030


Festivals, Music & Food The Caribbean is demand for more of the same. The renowned for its impetus has never stopped and the colourful Oistins Fish Fry is now one of the festivals, island’s biggest tourist attractions. amazing music Music forms a huge part of the and wide variety Barbados social scene and while Rihanna of food. and Shontelle showcase our talent on the Barbados is no international stage, local music covers a exception and wide range that includes calypso, soca, festivals of every reggae, steel pan, jazz and modern. The type are held throughout the year. The same could be said for Barbados cuisine, biggest celebration surrounds the sugar and while European and South American industry and highlights the huge influences are strong, local chefs have contributions sugar production made to their own authentic Caribbean style and the economic and social development of indulgences. Food and wine festivals are Barbados. King sugar was for centuries popular and Barbadian chefs have the backbone of the island’s economy enjoyed considerable success in and many of the festivals that have international and regional competitions. remained celebrate the harvesting of Fish and chicken are more popular than sugar. How ironic that in the modern era red meat, rice is more popular than when sugar production has given way to potatoes and a variety of local vegetables tourism the island’s principal breadare unique and healthy. winner, that the traditional festivals As always with holiday destinations, the should still be enshrined in commerce as fast-food option is available and high they attract large numbers of visitors. quality, but the culinary experience of the The main festival is Crop Over in island should not be missed. Barbados July/August culminating in the has some exceptional restaurants. Kadooment Day Parade. The Carnival, dubbed the sweetest festival, has many features including musical calypso and soca competitions, parties and pageantry. The costumes in the parade are innovative, proactive and colourful and the party atmosphere electric. Barbados has a plethora of festivals that cover sport, gospel, fishing, culture, and entertainment. The Oistins Fish Festival proves so popular that a Friday evening fish-fry on the main street Tides Restaurant evolved to satisfy the

Visit the new • 3232


Government, Commerce & Business Barbados prides itself on a stable government as the second oldest democracy in the Western World. Parliament has two chambers and there are two political parties with similar backgrounds and ideologies. The Democratic Labour Party has been in power since 2008 and the current Prime Minister is the Right Hon. Freundel Stuart. Parliament Buildings are situated close to Heroes Square in downtown Bridgetown. Barbados is an independent state within the Commonwealth of Nations and also takes a leading part in regional governance through CARICOM, albeit each country has independent sovereignty. Much talk has taken place in the last decade about the advantages of a single Market Economy amongst the small Caribbean countries, but it seems taking this concept to a finish line has proved impossible despite the common intent. Visionary and stable government has helped build Barbados as a solid destination for commerce and international business. Prior to the economic meltdown the island was a popular location for overseas property investment. Offshore banking and international commerce. However, the pace of development in these sectors has dramatically reduced in the past three years albeit there are small

signs that recovery is taking place. Tourism is the island’s principal industry with sugar production still a significant contributor to foreign exchange earnings. The Barbados dollar is fixed at 2 to 1 against the US dollar, so foreign exchange earnings are an important part of fiscal governance. These are six main banks, mostly branch offices of Canadian banks. Banking is conservative by nature, and although home ownership has been an important part of lending in the past decade, the level of delinquency is very low compared to more mature markets. Overseas investors can purchase property in Barbados as long as they are of good standing, and mortgage finance is available in overseas currency. However, non-nationals wishing to work on the island are subject to immigration control and approval. The main airport is the modern complex at Grantley Adams International Airport on the South Coast and daily flights come from Europe, America and Canada. Barbados is also a popular stop for the various Caribbean Cruise Lines which operate through Bridgetown Port and Cruise Terminal. A second port for mainly domestic use is situated at Port St Charles on the West Coast, just north of Speightstown.

Visit the new • 3434


Sightseeing, Shopping & Activities Every holiday revolves around sightseeing, shopping and activities but it depends on your individual preference as to where the priority lies. Quite simply, it is different strokes for different folks in these areas but visitors will have plenty to consider. Barbados is a small island and an island tour with Island Safari will take you everywhere in 5-6 hours including a lunch stop. Value for money it’s one of the best ways to discover Barbados. Taxis and buses also offer tours but the jeep safari exceeds them all. If you prefer the comfort and relaxation of a catamaran cruise then you have the option of the lovely Silver Moon or Tiami cruises. They have a daily lunch cruise which includes snorkeling on wrecks, swimming with the turtles, a tasty lunch and plenty of drinks on the house. They also do a special sundown cruise which takes you down the west coast for a tranquil and romantic sail, enjoying the magnificent sunset. If you’re a party person then the fun filled Jolly Roger Cruise is for you! Another option is to hire a car and do your own thing! Reputable car hire companies like Corbin’s Car Hire, Courtesy Car Rental, Drive A Matic, Top Car Rental have a wealth of experience in the business and although the roads are narrow driving is not hazardous or difficult. You may miss a road here and there but that’s part of the fun of driving in Barbados. When all else fails just look at the bus signs – ‘Into Bridgetown’ or ‘Out of Bridgetown’.

Barbados has plenty of sightseeing options and they vary from the historical Garrison area where the museum is located, to old plantation homes like Nicholas Abbey. Harrison’s Caves is a spectacular underground experience which has recently been renovated and rates as the island’s top attraction and the Legends Cricket Museum close to Kensington Oval which is full of cricket memorabilia and history is a must for all cricket fans. A visit to the City Centre in Bridgetown can be both sightseeing and a shopping experience. This old colonial seaport has retained much of its ambience down the years and Broad Street is a bustling all action thoroughfare packed with people , traffic, shops and energy. Nelson’s statue stands close to Heroes Square and Parliament Buildings at the top of the one-way street and the impressive old Mutual Building sits majestically at the other end. In between is half a mile of shops and frenzy. For an island that is characterized by a laidback relaxed lifestyle, Broad Street and Bushy Park (car racing) are the exceptions!

Visit the new • 3636


Shopping is a personal thing, but Broad Street offers many options from the big Cave Shepherd all-in department store with it’s excellent designer wear in Broad Street Men’s and Women’s Designer Wear to Diamonds International, Colombian Emeralds and the Royal Shop for jewellery that is ultra special. Barbados has an excellent reputation in jewellery for high quality and keen prices. The City Centre shopping experience also includes Swan street which runs parallel to Broad Street and offers less expensive options in a maze of shops

and stores. It’s just as nice, but there are plenty of bargains on offer and that’s a big attraction to shoppers. Away from the City Centre there are some excellent malls where the dynamic is scaled down to zero and shopping is a relaxing past time. Lime Grove Lifestyle Centre at Holetown is a magnificent new upmarket shopping experience packed with high-end stores and boutiques. It is a must for serious shoppers and the Polo Ralph Lauren store is as good as it gets, packed with some of the more exclusive Polo Ralph Lauren labels and catering to men and ladies with lots of choice in clothes, swimwear and accessories. You have to experience this store! By their nature activities can be as energetic or as docile as you prefer. It’s a bit like a West Coast cruise which can be as peaceful as a romantic Silver Moon catamaran cruise or as raucous as a Jolly Roger party. Or you can go underwater on the popular Atlantis submarines for an unforgettable ‘under the sea’ adventure. The same could be said for

diving and many visitors come to the island specifically to dive the numerous wrecks that have dubbed Barbados ‘the dive capital of the Caribbean’. The dive experience also includes novices and the highly qualified instructors at Hightide Diving at the Coral Reef Hotel, take great pride in launching the diving careers of many visitors. You also can’t miss going into one of the many Best of Barbados shops. This family run chain of quality souvenir stores was started by Jill Walker and now her daughter and son in law Sue and Chris Trew continue to produce tasteful artistic mementoes of the island which have travelled worldwide. Barbados has always been identified with the Concorde as the rich and famous used this visionary aircraft to come and go to their favourite Caribbean paradise. It was therefore quite a coup when the island secured one of the old aircraft and turned it into a museum situated close to the airport. The Concorde Experience is a unique journey back in time and a must do for traveling aficionados. The same must do should apply to a visit to Earthworks Pottery in St Thomas. If one product identifies with the island

Visit the new • 38


then it has to be Earthworks as it has been carried all over the world as a gift. See the pottery being made, visit the gift shop, enjoy a relaxing coffee, look at the magnificent view. Rum production has been at the heart of the Barbados economy for over 300 years and Mount Gay Rum has been at the helm. Visitors love to trace the origins of rum production, sample the product and take home some of the branded products. All this can be done at the Mount Gay Visitor’s Centre located on the Spring Garden Highway.

Many visitors enjoy the rich natural beauty of Barbados and marvel at our botanical blessings, One of the best places to enjoy them is at the Flower Forest Botanical Gardens in the Scotland district in the east of the island. Fifty acres of wild natural beauty have been conserved and embellished with local tropical plants and others from all over the world. Activities don’t stop with daylight and Barbados boasts some of the best nightlife in the region. St Lawrence Gap remains the heartbeat of Barbados after

hours, although Harbour Lights has been the most popular nightspot for socialites for over 30 years. Enjoy their beach dinner parties on Monday and Wednesday nights complete with bajan floorshow and stay for the disco afterwards. Live Music, Dj’s, party nights and all-in packages are features of Harbour Lights. During the day, you can rent beach chairs and umbrellas, but lunch, take a shower and just chill! It’s different strokes for different folks but there is always something for everyone in Barbados.

Visit the new • 40


The History, the Legends, the Test Match

Visit the new • 42


Cricket is a huge part of Barbados sporting culture and although the West Indies team continues to struggle in current times, King Cricket has remained the first love of most Barbadians. Our island has been blessed with a cricket pedigree second to none, and despite our small stature in geographical terms, we are giants in the history of the game. Barbados has been the dominant island in West Indies cricket since the first inter-island matches back in the mid 19th century and our players have made a huge contribution to the success that has followed down the years. Cricket, lovely cricket, once engulfed every aspect of Barbadian life and when the West Indies team was in town for the test matches, virtually everything stopped for cricket. The passion has dimmed in recent times as invincibility in the 1980s and 1990s has given way to mediocrity in the new millennium. But poor performances on the field are starting to improve and fresh hope lies with a new generation of aspiring young Caribbean cricketers. Change is a dynamic in everyday life and while our long-suffering cricket fans wait patiently for the return to better times, cricket facilities in Barbados have improved beyond recognition. The

Mecca of Caribbean cricket these days is the magnificent new Kensington Oval which was completely rebuilt for the 2007 World Cup. The stadium was filled on that infamous occasion, but such is the fickle nature of cricket these days, that the only time it has been filled since was the Rihanna ‘LOUD’ concert in August last year that packed over 28,000 into the ground. Oh, to have those crowds back to cricket!


Our island has been blessed with a cricket pedigree second to none, and despite our small stature in geographical terms, we are giants in the history of the game.


Legends Barbados has been spoiled by cricket excellence down the years which is why so many cricket enthusiasts visit the island to tour, take part in tournaments or to watch a test match. Much of that aura has been built around the outstanding performances of our superstars, many of whom became household names in cricket homes all around the world. Five of them were knighted for their services to cricket, an

incredible statistic for an island of just over 280,000 inhabitants. The gravy train of cricket brilliance featured the wonderful talents of the 3Ws – Sir Everton Weekes, Sir Frank Worrell, and Sir Clyde Walcott, the popular Sir Conrad Hunte, Malcolm Marshall, Gordon Greenidge, Desmond Haynes, Joel Garner, Wes Hall, Charlie Griffith, Seymour Nurse and of course, the greatest cricketer that ever lived-Sir Garfield Sobers. Sir Garry remains the most popular

cricketer in the Caribbean, a National Hero in Barbados, and the island’s finest sporting ambassador. Thankfully the legacy of these great cricketers has been captured forever in the Legends Museum just across from the Kensington Oval and a stone’s throw from the famous Sir Garfield Sobers statue outside the ground. The Museum is packed with authentic cricket memorabilia and a visit is a must for any cricket enthusiast on the island.

Visit the new • 44


The Test Match Cricket visitors all have their special memories of trips to Barbados, but the experience of a test match at the Kensington Oval is usually the most treasured memory. Unfortunately the cricket crowds at test matches all over the world have been dropping in modern times, but when the top teams visit Barbados there is still a great buzz of excitement. In the old days the dilapidated stands and uncovered terracing were filled with characters and the noise during play was a cauldron of music, cheers, jeers and unsolicited advice to all and sundry! Bajans love their cricket, they know their cricket, and they’re not short of opinions when they need to express their views. The old stands have disappeared and new stadia now surrounds the splendid surface that is the envy of every groundsman. The new stands still retain those famous names – The 3Ws stand, the Greenidge and Haynes, the Mitchie Hewitt, and the characters are still there. King amongst Kings is calypsonian MacFingall, and his colourful entourage often includes characters like ‘Gravy’ from Antigua.

Pre-2007 spectators surged out to the narrow streets behind the Pickwick and Kensington Stands at lunchtime to grab a fish cutter, down a few beers and re-live the morning’s action. Many former test players mixed freely in the mayhem as everyone enjoyed another unique aspect of test cricket in Barbados. Many people lament the passing of the old street experience, but in a way the new Kensington Oval has captured some of it with the shops, fast food stalls and bars behind the Greenidge and Haynes stand. The mayhem is just as hectic when the crowds are large and the atmosphere just as electric. The new Kensington Oval boasts a superb electronic scoreboard, party stand, impressive 3Ws stand, numerous hospitality boxes, a Kensington Oval souvenir shop and a large Media Centre. It is a superb modern cricket stadium, and if West Indies cricket has not moved with the times, then Barbados cricket has with this tremendous facility. But there are other shades of the Kensington Oval that make it special. The Sir Garry Statue outside the ground has become as well-known as the Grace Gates

at Lord’s, and in addition to being the most popular meeting place prior to a match, it is also the most photographed landmark 365 days a year! The Legends Museum close to the Fontabelle exit has also become a favourite post-match lime for patrons in no rush home, and you are always certain to meet some of the great legends in person as this is their favourite aftermatch haunt. These guys are brilliant and genuine cricket lovers who mix freely with visitors and happily sign autographs and pose for photographs. Quite simply, they are legends! England travel with the biggest support in world cricket and with our strong British legacy, the Barmy Army and company love Barbados. And Barbados loves them, as cricket supporters share all the fun and enjoyment of their sport in a very unique and friendly way. Club tours are often arranged around test matches and some cricket tour companies specialize in Barbados tours. In 2012 West Indies cricket hosts both Australia and New Zealand and local fans eagerly await these popular teams and their supporters.

Visit the new • 46


Grasshoppers on Tour! Grasshopper Mark Nixon reflects on a very special Caribbean tour

Grasshoppers Cricket Club from Northern Ireland

Ryan Haire meets Nigel Benn’s aunty

The Ulster Grasshoppers are a touring cricket team based in Northern Ireland who have been in existence for over 30 years. We’re considered the nomads of Irish cricket having played 100 plus games in dozens of countries throughout the world. After a physically challenging and slightly controversial tour of India in 2009 (post Mumbai terror attacks), it was decided that the biennial tour in 2011 should be to the tropical paradise islands of Antigua and Barbados. At times it was felt that persuasion was needed to convince people of the merit of touring to places a bit more culturally diverse such as India, however, the tour to the Caribbean had no such problem. People had their names and deposits in quicker than ever

before. The positive response was, of course, no surprise to The Grasshoppers’ veteran captain, Neil Russell. Neil had toured Barbados and St. Lucia back in 2005 and loved it so much that he has returned on regular occasions. It was last March when the big day arrived, and 12 pasty (plus two who had pre-tanned) Ulstermen arrived at the airport to embark on The Grasshoppers Tour of Antigua and Barbados. Even at that early stage lessons were learnt, one tourist won’t forget his passport ever again, and I won’t hit the snooze button more than once. As soon as we landed in Antigua we experienced the huge climatic difference and it helped explain why things are done at a more leisurely pace. We quickly embraced the laid-back approach and we were happy enough to wait minutes for an ice-cold beverage. In truth, we had no choice! The all-inclusive hotels on both islands were beach side, which allowed us to soak up the rays and admire the local talent from a professional viewpoint (beach cricket of course!) After a net session in the new Sir Vivian

Richards Stadium we played local team Jennings CC, and an 8-wicket victory got our trip off to the perfect start. We played one more game in Antigua, (one was cancelled) which again resulted in an easy victory, this time by 121 runs. What can be deduced from the two games was that the Antiguans love to bowl short and fast. Presumably because of this, not many locals enjoy batting and we found this to be the weaker suit amongst their cricketers. After a delightful (if a tad quiet) week in Antigua it was time to move on to Barbados and the leg of the tour we’d all been eagerly anticipating. We arrived at the airport early in the morning and chilled in typical Caribbean fashion as we lazed about the terminal. This mood soon changed when we saw our plane. Personally I have never been one for flying on planes with propellers where a jet engine should be. It was reassuring to know that according to one of the tourists who claimed to be an Aerospace expert, statistically propellerpropelled aircrafts are safer. Happily, after the hour-long flight, we landed safely in

Visit the new • 48


Neil Russell blasts out at St. John

All aboard the Silver Moon cruise

That famous bar close to Conrad Hunte Cricket Club

Barbados. Immediately we noticed one difference between the two islands. Barbados had roads that seemingly hadn’t been surfaced by gypsies and the strong sea breeze made things a lot more comfortable for us. The cricket in Barbados was of a much higher standard, which was pleasing for everyone concerned. In our first match against Pickwick we were beaten by 10 wickets after posting what we thought was a competitive 170 in 35 overs. However, two young superstars the St. Hill brothers put us to the sword! Thankfully we held our own in the post-match revelry with a great bunch of guys. We then played (and won) a close match of tapeball against Wadadah. Tapeball is basically cricket without pads. The tennis ball, unsurprisingly, is wrapped in tape making it hard enough to bruise, but not hard enough to rearrange one’s dental plan. You might think it is just a mess about in the park, but it’s far from it. Tapeball is very popular and structured in mid-week leagues mainly comprising of senior players who are maybe otherwise engaged at the weekend playing golf, cutting the

grass or sucking Werther’s Originals. I would recommend any future tourists to the island to arrange a fixture of tapeball as it gives one the chance to experience facing former First-Class crickets without a 78% chance of death. The remaining cricket results finished with another win and another loss, both were hard fought games where we felt cricketing lessons were learnt. The locals were extremely competitive on the field, but just as warm and friendly off it. Staying behind after the game and hearing their anecdotes over a few beers was extremely enjoyable. There was plenty to do in Barbados both daytime and night-time. We set aside chasing leather one day and enjoyed a round of golf at the beautiful Rockley Golf Club. Due to the previous night’s activities, which included a rather long fines meeting, we decided to increase our chance of survival and take buggies to stay out of the hot Bajan sun. We anticipated unearthing a budding Graeme McDowell, Rory McIlroy or Darren Clarke amongst the touring party, but with all the holes having an out of bounds the scores were

not quite so flattering. The quaint clubhouse made a great 19th hole from which we were able to reward the bandit golfers on display. The warm, inviting reception from the members and the craic was truly memorable and I’d say is a must-do for those visiting the island. On another day we had a great trip on the Silver Moon catamaran, and the rare experience of swimming with the turtles. It was an unbelievable experience and I believe no trip to Barbados would be complete without a Silver Moon cruise. Sadly the end of tour dinner came all too quickly and it was time to leave Barbados and fly home. Looking back we met some wonderful people and we appreciated the efforts made by the organizers on the islands to make the tour so enjoyable. Overall it was the experience of a lifetime and we all had some great craic and some tough cricket so I’m sure it won’t be our last time in the Caribbean, although we may not spend quite as much time in the famous Harbour Lights Nightclub next time! Or maybe we will! It was terrific.

Visit the new • 50


Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket...Fun, Exciting & Rewarding

Simone Hull, Kemar Roach, Kraigg Brathwaite & KJ Singh

Courtney Walsh being interviewed

After 12 consecutive years as the sponsor of Kiddy Cricket in the West Indies, Scotiabank can be proud to have helped produce some outstanding cricketers. The Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket Programme is best known for its lunch interval entertainment during test matches, but the commitment and focus of both the sponsor and the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) goes much farther. Dozens of schools throughout the region are supplied with new kits and cricket equipment with the mutual theme – “Cricket is fun, it is exciting and it is rewarding.” The Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket Programme has been primarily directed at boys and girls in the 7-12 year-old bracket, but the huge spin-off has been in the increasing number of outstanding young players who have stood out and consequently been fast-tracked into bigger and better opportunities. Since inception it has taught over 200,000 aspiring young cricketers all

across the region, and continues to introduce new innovations to ensure it will continue to flourish. Over the past year, the Bank has worked with the WICB to deliver the “Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket Minute,” Kiddy Cricket Festivals and Skills Building Camps, and increased Coach Training programmes as part of a visionary strategy to expand the reach of the programme and involve more schools. As part of a mission to unearth new talent, build commitment and inspire young cricketers, Scotiabank has been bringing the kids face to face with Cricket Legends across the region. The Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket Minute’ was an innovative initiative that allowed the kids to have some one on one discussions with West Indian legends like Joel Garner, Jeffrey Dujon, Courtney Walsh and Curtley Ambrose. Each legend, giving students unique advice and a deep insight into their own personal evolvement. Though the Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket

Programme wasn’t around in the Garner, Dujon, Walsh and Ambrose’s era, it has played a significant part in delivering present day star performers. Many of the West Indies Regional and national Cricket teams include former Kiddy Cricket players; and two of them hold the distinction of going all the way to the full West Indies team. And both hail from Barbados! Kemar Roach made his debut in 2009 against Bangladesh in St. Vincent and the talented young fast bowler has been in the squad ever since. Opening batsman Kraigg Brathwaite is a more recent debutant and when he played against Pakistan last year as an 18 year-old, he became the fifth youngest player behind such distinguished cricket icons like Sir Garry Sobers. If the Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket programme continues to stay true to its new tagline “Growing the Sport” and keeps unearthing such promising young talent then perhaps West Indies cricket is on the road to recovery!

Visit the new • 52



The Golf Scene, The Courses & The Sir Garry Tournament

Royal Westmoreland

Visit the new • 54


Barbados Golf Club

The Golf Scene Barbados offers great golfing options to visitors and some beautiful courses in stunning locations. But it doesn’t come cheap, so if you play on a budget then this is not the golf destination for you. That said, there are always deals so best advise is to do your homework prior to arrival as some of the best packages are linked to accommodation. Barbados has five 18-hole courses and two nine-hole courses. Sandy Lane, Royal Westmoreland and Apes Hill are the three most prestigious courses, with golf fees to match, while Barbados Golf Club, a few miles from the airport, tends to be the most used by both locals and visitors. Sandy Lane has two 18-hole courses – the pay-as-you-pay Country

“Barbados has five 18hole courses and two nine-hole courses. Sandy Lane, Royal Westmoreland and Apes Hill are the three most prestigious courses, with golf fees to match, while Barbados Golf Club, a few miles from the airport, tends to be the most used by both locals and visitors.” 55


The Green Monkey Golf Course at Sandy Lane

Club Championship Course and the exclusive Green Monkey. The prestigious Sandy Lane Hotel also offers nine holes at the original Old Nine, a short walk across the road from the beachfront property. Rockley Golf Club is another nine-hole parkland course with a vibrant social scene on the South Coast and is the oldest club on the island. Green Monkey, Royal Westmoreland and Apes Hill are private courses but they offer opportunities to play for guests staying at their villas or in the case of Sandy Lane, at the hotel. Despite these restrictions, the Barbados golf product is a vibrant and very special experience. All the courses offer different conditions and design, some better suited to the low handicap players, while others are genuine easy-paced golf courses ideal for casual holiday golf and socializing. Rockley in particular is unique in that Saturday competitions are held all year round and visitors are welcomed with open arms.

The Courses The courses in the northern part of the island make best use of the hilly topography and the deep gullies have allowed golf designers some excellent natural terrain to work with. These are unique to Barbados with some magnificent scenery stretching all the way down to the West Coast. Sandy Lane is a household name all over the world because of the status at the top of the hospitality ladder. The golf facilities are just as luxurious with the impressive clubhouse a wonderful finale to any golf match. The resort offers two 18-hole courses and a nine-hole relic of the old Sandy Lane course, that remains a big favourite with seasoned visitors and the older locals. The prestigious Green Monkey Course is ultra exclusive and only available to hotel and special guests. It is a beautifully landscaped and manicured Tom Fazio quarry-design with several unique holes surrounding the signature lake. The course is lightly used and only then by the rich and famous as befits a resort of Sandy Lane’s status.

The Country Club course is open to anyone and hosted the 2006 World Championship Matchplay event won by Germany’s Bernard Langer and Marcel Siem. It is another Tom Fazio design, but has utilized nine holes of the old course to great advantage as the trees and design add to the ambience. Manmade lakes in elevated parkland settings with challenging breezes make the course tough when set up for competition, but relatively comfortable off the front tees for the high handicappers and casual golfers. The Old Nine has stood the test of 50 years and remains a great advertisement for a parkland course set amongst some of the island’s most exclusive real estate. This is another pay-as-you-play facility and with Barbados Golf Association membership the cost is very reasonable. The Royal Westmoreland Course is just a few miles north of Sandy Lane in the parish of St James. It is a Robert Trent Jones jr design and a formidable test of golf, especially when the wind blows. There are bunkers everywhere and the

Visit the new • 56


Barbados Golf Club 18th Green & Club house

Apes Hill Golf Course

variety of tee positions at the four challenging par threes adds to the difficulty factor. But the real beauty of Royal Westmoreland is its stunning setting on the rolling slopes of St James with panoramic views all the way down to the coast. The golf resort offers much more than golf, as the impressive colonial-style clubhouse is a beautiful lounge bar and restaurant. Tennis facilities are within a stone’s throw of the clubhouse and the pool facility. The entire development is an impressive golf lifestyle real estate complex that features some magnificent properties. Amongst the owners are former Ryder Cup Captain Ian Woosnam, Manchester United footballer Wayne Rooney and former England cricketers Andrew Flintoff and Michael Vaughan. The Royal Westmoreland scene is a favourite haunt of the rich and famous and throughout the year many celebrities come and go at will. Apes Hill is the most recent addition to the Barbados golf product and without doubt its finest asset. The real estate element may have stalled in the wake of a global recession, but the quality of the product remains outstanding. Rated as one the best courses in the Caribbean,

the idyllic vistas of both East and West coasts are compelling, and the rich countryside in which the course has been sculptured makes it very special. The course measures over 7,000 yards and two par three holes are unforgettable. The 12th hole is set in a gully with spectacular views of both coastlines from an elevated tee, while the 16th across the lake is a precision shot with little room for error. The landscaping is exceptional and the setting serene and pastoral. Ultimately Apes Hill will have a full range of sporting and social facilities that embrace polo, tennis, fitness, spa, clubhouse and hotel facilities. It has also achieved designation as a “certified Audubon Co-operative Sanctuary” through the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for golf courses, testimony to the course’s preservation of the environment and water conservation strategy. Opportunities to play are restricted, but available. Guests staying at villas in the Apes Hill Resort have unlimited access and tee times are available within certain times of the year. Best to call Apes Hill direct for information. The Barbados Golf Club and Rockley

Golf Club are located on the South Coast and both are essentially flat parkland courses, although the Durants course has some links features. Barbados Golf Club has wide open fairways and some challenging holes, especially against the wind. Set up to its maximum difficulty factor it can be a monster, but off the front tees it is a pleasant 18 holes for casual and relaxing golf. The course is 6,705 yards long with a friendly clubhouse alongside the 9th and 18th Greens. Access to the course is unlimited with good value discount packages to encourage pay-as-you-play visitors. There is a strong local membership and the club has gone to great lengths to encourage and develop youth golf and to promote regional competitions under the auspices of the Barbados Golf Association. A driving range was set up two years ago and golf tuition is also available by appointment. The wind is the big variable at Barbados Golf Club and when it blows the holes back to the clubhouse can be daunting. Three of the par fives and reachable in two shots by the big hitters, but making regulation pars against the breeze levels the scoring opportunities. The last hole

Visit the new • 58


The 7th hole at Rockley Golf Club

Sir Garry with 2011 winner James Johnson

is a classic finishing hole. A par five with the approach to the green protected by a small pond and waterway, it offers everything to the aggressive golfer, but high reward comes at high risk and where better to discuss the enterprise or folly of the final shots than at the bar just a few yards behind the green? If much of the best golf is played in the clubhouse, then the 19th hole at Rockley would be in the Top Ten in the World!!! The social side of Rockley is often seen as its greatest asset, but the club has a strong ‘snowbird’ membership of visitors who have been returning for years and just love this quaint nine-hole parkland course set amongst condominium clusters! The course measures just under 6,000 yards as an 18-hole course, and switching the tee positions does change the strategy from nine to nine. But Rockley’s greatest asset is its degree of difficulty as there is Out of Bounds on every hole, and some of the shots require the ultimate accuracy. In addition, most greens are well protected by bunkers and they tend to be slow, albeit run true. Both the 7th and 8th holes have formidable trees in the fairway making strategic course management a high priority. Rockley is a fun course where the

members go to great lengths to welcome visitors. It is the ONLY authentic golf club on the island with a Gent’s and Ladies Captain and a club committee. It is the oldest club on the island and it was on the 5th fairway that the first airplane landed in Barbados. Rockley is another pay-as-you-play facility with temporary mambership packages all year round! Many couples play at the club and in competition both the men and the ladies compete against each other. The ladies also meet on Wednesdays. But it is the clubhouse where Rockley excels and members mix freely with visitors every day. Saturday is competition day and after the presentation ceremony at six o clock most evenings have entertainment, formal and impromptu. Rockley may not be the longest course on the island, but it is a stiff challenge and a fun place to play and meet new friends.

The Sir Garry Tournament Barbados is renowned for the quality of its tournaments throughout the year. Some are high profile and attract top international golfers, some are huge charity fund-raisers and attract leading celebrities, some are sports tourism

initiatives to attract visitors, and many others are club events for local golfers. But one tournament has embraced all types and it remains one of the most popular golf events in the Caribbean. Named in honour of the greatest cricketer of all time, the Sir Garry Sobers Golf Championships have been going for over ten years and is getting bigger and better. Last year it had a record number of entrants and used the 72 hole championship course at Apes Hill as the host venue. Over 280 players participated across a number of flights for both men and ladies. The overseas visitors came form Canada, US, UK, Jamaica, Antigua, Guyana, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Trinidad and Tobago. Both amateurs and professionals compete, and one of the competitions greatest assets is the value for money. The tournament is spread over four days and staged at the top four 18-hole courses. Sponsored by Digicel, one of the top sports sponsors in the region, all entrants get the opportunity to play at four top courses for a modest cost plus entertainment packages and excellent prizes. And a small number of players also get the opportunity to play with the great Sir Garry who was once as accomplished at golf as cricket!

Visit the new • 60


Warren Bynoe by J. Clare Hiles

At seventeen years old, Warren Bynoe has already proven himself as one of Barbados’ top golfers. With an impressive 1 handicap and the experience of representing Barbados already under the belt, his career has gotten off to an incredible start and it seems to be just going upwards. Warren began playing golf at the age of three, when his grandfather took him to the local driving range. From then he has gone on to play frequently throughout his education, traveling with the Barbados team on numerous occasions. Currently, he is at the Loretto School in Scotland, a golf academy, where in addition to doing his A-Levels, he also practices up to four times a week. His hope is to get into a good university with

a decent golf team, and hopefully pursue the sport as a career. His take on Barbados golf is interesting, and relevant. Junior golf, according to Warren, currently leaves much to be desired. He believes that public facilities such as local driving ranges could really bring the game alive and open it up to the youth. On the other hand, senior golf facilities are quite good. He believes the key to the development of the game is popularity and making it more accessible to all age groups as this will benefit the sport substantially in the long run. Finally, Warren’s words of wisdom to any youths who want to break into the golf scene are simple; “Just start to play. The more practice you put in, the more you will get out of it”.

inspire d by the se a

Open every night for Oceanfront Dining T: (246) 432-8356 The Tides Restaurant Holetown • St. James • Barbados e:





Sandy Lane Charitable Trust Golf Tournament Once again this amazing event attracted huge support from a wide range of business and showbiz personalities who combined to those in need through this Trust. The owners of the Sandy Lane Hotel are the main patrons of the Sandy Lane Charitable Trust and their Annual Golf Tournament and dinner is one of the

highlights in the Barbados golfing and social calendar. The aim of the Trust is ‘To provide for the needy children of Barbados’ and the participants in both the tournament and at the dinner, give generously to a worthy cause. This event is one of the major annual charity golf events and in the past nine years it has raised a phenomenal Bds$12 million for the Trust. The Trust has a variety of programs and projects and one of the highlights of the evening is a short video presentation highlighting the work being done and the response from the beneficiaries. It is a

Noreen McManus, Gay Smith, Pat Desmond & Mauve Danaher

truly humbling experience. The Trust built the first school in Barbados for disabled children under the age of five, and it has been proactive in providing counseling for primary school children, childcare support for low-income families, and healthcare funding both at home and overseas. Many leading local and UK entertainers contribute to make the dinner a special occasion, and the auction and silent auction generate the much-needed funds to help the needy. Well done to the Sandy Lane Charitable Trust.

St. Winifred’s School Bell Chimers

Visit the new • 66





Sir Kyffin Simpson & Senator Geoffrey Cave

John Lodge, Julian Sacher, Pippa Challis & Derrick Smith

Comedian & MC Russ Abbott

Virginia & Les Hutchison with Barbara Ward

Stewart Horescyi, Cilla Black, Dee Alexander, Ellen Horescyi, Joan & John Hargeaves


Doreen & Michael Tabor



The History, The Garrison & The Sandy Lane Gold Cup

Visit the new • 68



Racing in Barbados dates back over 200 years and possibly longer if you include the rivalry amongst the plantation owners in the 1700s. The noble horse has played an important part in the economic and social development of Barbados, so it was inevitable that it would also dominate recreational activities. The British Calvary officers became involved in the 1800s and almost from their arrival, the Garrison became a favourite haunt for horseracing and later polo. Racing has come a long way since and much of the credit goes to the Barbados Turf Club which was founded in 1906 and continues to administer and develop the sport today. The sport is not without its characters and like many places all over the world, it has that wonderful capacity to embrace everyone – rich and poor, famous and




Champion jockey Patrick Husbands

unknown. The Barbadian racing calendar is divided into three seasons and racing takes place on Saturday afternoons at the Garrison Race Track. One feature event is the Sandy Lane Gold Cup Festival in March followed by a host of race days including the United Insurance derby, the Triple Crown Series, the Guineas, the Creole Classic and the Diamonds International Series for two year-olds. Diamonds International has a close affinity to equestrian sports and is

a big sponsor of both racing and polo. Many of the top jockeys in Barbados have furthered their careers in Canada and amongst them Patrick Husbands has been exceptional, winning the coveted Jockey Sovereign Award as the top jockey a staggering seven times. The Barbados racing scene is essentially local most of the year but the Sandy Lane Gold Cup attracts overseas entries and pictures of the race are beamed all over the world. International racing icons like Lester Piggott are frequent visitors, and of course, Barbados is well represented on the international racing scene through the phenomenal success of Sir Michael Stoute, arguably the greatest trainer of all time. Barbados has had some outstanding trainers down the years including the famous Australian Scobie Breasley who rode an amazing 3,251 winners as a jockey before spending seven successful years as a trainer in Barbados in the 1980’s. Barbados’ equivalent was the ebullient Chally Jones with over 1,000 winners including 17 Derby wins. Former English jockey and World War 11 bomber pilot Bill Marshall was an institution in Barbados racing for many

“The Barbados racing scene is essentially local most of the year but the Sandy Lane Gold Cup attracts overseas entries and pictures of the race are beamed all over the world.” years and his legacy lives on with memories of unforgettable wins in all the top races, and through the exploits of a new generation of jockeys and trainers, many of whom learned the trade from the ‘Guvenor.” Owners and breeders have been the lifeblood of the sport and Barbados racing has been blessed with the patronage of passionate supporters like Sir David Seale, Sir Charles Williams, Lord Michael Taylor, Sir Martyn Arbib and his wife Sally, Derrick and Gay Smith, the Haloute Family, Senator Geoffrey Cave, Bruce Bayley, Canadian Eugene Melnyk and many more.

Visit the new • 70



Sue Chainer, Sharon Christie & George Hutchinson enjoying the action

Pippa & Mike Challis

Sandy Lane Gold Cup style

Eugene Melnyk

The Garrison Racetrack The Garrison Racetrack just outside Bridgetown on the South Coast owes much to the military as it was the Royal Engineers who drained it and transformed it from an insect-infested swamp to a sporting grassland, and the Calvary officers who established it as a racecourse. The round track is unique in that the racing is clockwise, the interior of the track is used for other sports including rugby, football and cricket and spectators watch from vantage points and betting booths all around the course. The parade ring is in front of the main stand and hospitality boxes. All betting is on the tote with options for Trifecta and Superfecta combinations. Bets are paid out after the winner has been officially declared and there are usually ten races each Race Day.

Sandy Lane Gold Cup Festival The Sandy Lane Gold Cup Festival is the highlight of the racing season and has come on leaps and bounds in status since the inaugural race in 1982. Everyone wants to win the Gold Cup and the island is buzzing as Gold Cup Day approaches on the first Saturday in March. A series of sporting and social events surround the main event and television crews, racing personalities and visitors travel from all over the world to be present on Race day. Entry to the Sandy Lane Gold Cup is by merit based on performance and administered by the Barbados Turf Club. Special recognition is given to overseas entrants to ensure the race retains its international culture and this enhances the competition as local breeders take great satisfaction in pitching their best mounts against the overseas horses. The jockeys are just as competitive, and ‘hired guns’ brought in to carry off the top prize quickly find out local jockeys are almost impossible to beat on their home turf at the Garrison. The Gold Cup has had its share of controversy but nothing could compare with the drama of last year. A full capacity crowd was in the stands and the

Visit the new • 72



Bruce Bayley (right) and friends

Carol Clarke & Peter Odle in the parade ring on Gold Cup day

Owner of Zoom, Gay Smith, The Rt. Hon Freundel Stuart, PM, jockey Antonio Bishop & trainer Edward Walcott with the Gold Cup

Mac Fingall in action

Trainer Chally Jones

Sir David Seale & Lady Seale

hospitality boxes when the 30th running of the top race in the Eastern Caribbean started just after the parade, close to 5pm. Twelve horses were in the field including two from St Kitts, much to the chagrin of two top local owners who questioned their qualifications but failed in their protest. As expected, the race was a thriller and as the horses moved into the home straight Show me the Money with champion jockey Jalon Samuel on board surged into the lead several lengths ahead. But the chasing pack were still in

contention and perhaps more aware than the fans that Samuels had crossed into Apostle’s line at the turn and was sure to be censured. Poor Apostle was the victim yet again of a Gold Cup incident and no sooner than the horses crossed the line than the formal protest was registered. Antonio Bishop on Zoom won the race from second place as the Stewards quickly admonished the bitterly disappointed Samuels who was jettisoned from hero to zero in doublequick time. The decision was just and although the owners of Show me the

Money went through the motions of an Appeal, there was no denying the merit as the delight of owners Derrick and Gay Smith, trainer Edward Walcott and jockey Antonio Bishop. The drama and excitement enhanced the occasion and long after Prime Minister Frendel Stuart presented the impressive trophy to the winning connections, there were heated arguments, banter and opinions on the outcome. If the 2012 Sandy Lane Gold Cup Race has as much excitement and entertainment we will be delighted!

Visit the new • 74



Diamonds International Montblanc Challenge Series

Lord Michael Taylor, Nikita Abed & Robert Corbin

Leslie & Linda Conway

Tiffany Jones, Terri Archer (centre) & Michal Hassid (right)

Elizabeth Gooch, Jan Husbands, Pamela Proverbs & friends

Terrol Cummins

Simone Ward, Alison Hinds, Paula Fenandes & Roger Hennis

Visit the new • 76


Polo - The History, The Polo Scene & The battle of The Sexes

Adriana Istambouli. from Piaget & captain Jeff Evelyn

Visit the new • 78


Polo traces its origins back to the Far East when a crude version of the modern game was played amongst tribes in the mountains. Great skill and horsemanship always won the day, much like the modern game where the best players are a breed apart, and in the great polo countries of the world, treated like royalty. The sport has always had an upper class culture, not least because you needed horses to play, and down through the year’s horseowners have been people of substance. The exception was perhaps the army, although 19th century British Cavalry officers came from the higher echelons of society and could hold their own in the company of any dignitary. Not surprisingly the cavalry officers loved polo from the moment they encountered it in the 1890’s in India. Within a decade they had re-invented it as their own,

produced rules and regulations, formed clubs and shipped the sport all over the British Empire. In due course it reached North America, South America and all over Europe. The British Calvary brought it to Barbados and played at the Garrison Savannah close to their barracks. The Garrison was the military’s recreation playground and the drilling ground for parade. The local plantation owners were willing participants in horse racing and polo so both sports flourished at the Garrison. Indeed all sports flourished as the first inter island cricket match was staged in 1865. The Barbados Polo Club was formed in 1884 and remained there until the 1960’s when it moved to its present headquarters at Holder’s Hill thanks to the generosity and patronage of the Kidd family. For almost 50 years the sport lived in the shadow of the racing fraternity and most of the polo ponies were either burnt-out racers or horses that failed to make the grade. But amazingly that all changed in the late nineties.


The modern polo scene is a far cry from the sleepy easy-going polo ambience of yesteryear. The transformation owes much to the patronage of business icons like Sir Charles Williams, , Kent Cole, Bjorn Bjerkhamn, Bruce Bayley ,Roddy Davis and Phillip Tempro plus an influx of new exciting players and top quality polo ponies.


Holders Hill

Jacob Hassid of Diamonds International presenting at the Battle of The Sexes

The Polo Scene The modern polo scene is a far cry from the sleepy easy-going polo ambience of yesteryear. The transformation owes much to the patronage of business icons like Sir Charles Williams, , Kent Cole, Bjorn Bjerkhamn, Bruce Bayley ,Roddy Davis and Phillip Tempro plus an influx of new exciting players and top quality polo ponies. The other essential ingredient in top quality polo promotion is sponsorship and like polo all over the World, Barbados owes much to the patronage and support of ‘blue chip’ sponsors and business giants. Many of the top businesses in Barbados are aligned to polo promotions including Diamonds International, who have gone to great lengths to include top international brands. All these elements have combined to

put Barbados polo onto the world polo map and in addition to attracting many top polo players to the island, local players have been invited all over the world. Perhaps of greater importance to the sports tourism product, many people now come to Barbados to watch or be involved in polo, and attendances at the top polo matches can be as high as several thousand. Modern polo has also been uplifted by the growth of new polo fields. While Holder’s Hill remains the Mecca of the Barbados Polo Club and its members, five other polo fields have been added in the last decade to increase the number of games played and boost the sport. Polo will always be a minority sport and with the cost of ponies and keeping them all year round, it will always be the sporting playground of the rich and

famous, much in keeping with Barbados on the international destination ladder. That adds to the pomp of the polo scene as the sport is as much about what happens around the clubhouse as to what happens on the pitch. Polo matches are grand social occasions in Barbados with visits from royalty like Prince Harry with pictures beamed all over the world. As for the polo – the international polo season starts just after Christmas and lasts until May. The programme is packed with visits from touring clubs, private clubs and top players to participate in the High-Goal tournaments. Barbados even has its own dedicated polo publication. “Polo Barbados” which covers just about everything you need to know about the local polo scene.

Visit the new • 80


The Battle of the Sexes Every polo tournament has its own unique character, a combination of venue, players, sponsors and promotion, but one series that has captured the imagination of the local spectators over the past decade has been the unique ‘Battle of the Sexes’. This tournament was the brainchild of local equestrian enthusiast Monique Archer and Diamonds International’s

Ladies supporters!

visionary Jacob Hassid who showed great enterprise when they launched it ten years ago. Initially it was an attempt to boost ladies polo and to provide some light relief from the hustle and bustle of competitive men’s tournaments but it has mushroomed beyond belief, and although the macho men were slow to embrace it, two stinging defeats in the inaugural years killed the myth of inequality and highlighted the

Elizabeth Cole & Lady Simpson

Visit the new • 82


Alex Tasker - Digicel with Marc Atwell

competitive nature of female polo players. The Barbados ladies augmented their resources with some talented overseas players and in the ensuing years more local ladies have joined the club. But the biggest spin-off has been the support and enthusiasm of the polo spectators. The Battle of the Sexes matches attract the biggest crowds and almost unashamedly, the bulk of the support is

Ciaran Burke - Digicel & his wife Nisha

Simone Ward (right) with Christansia Evelyn

for the fair sex. In fairness the men have long since upped the ante and the respect in which they hold the ladies these days can be measured by the quality of their teams and their focus on winning. The series has a winning formula with four games culminating in a final game at Holder’s Hill on the Sunday afternoon. Last year it was promoted as the Diamonds International – sponsored Piaget Battle of the Sexes

International Tournament and on the final day the Digicel Men just edged out the Piaget Ladies amidst great excitement. And it’s not all about the polo! An added attraction for the fans was the opportunity for a lucky spectator to win a sparkling Piaget Diamond necklace in a raffle or to avail of some outstanding Blackberry deals from Digicel. It all adds up to a wonderful tournament.


Three Young Ladies of the Future

Heather Walker

Heather Walker

Barbados is enjoying a huge wage of popularity in equestrian sports, especially in horseracing and polo. But show-jumping and Dressage are also growing in popularity and three young Barbadian ladies are determined to go to the top in their chosen sport…

Heather Walker

Emily Kinch

Heather Walker is a 16 year-old student at Queen’s College in Barbados and grew up on a plantation where horses were part of everyday life. Inevitably riding became second nature and rarely does a day pass that she’s not involved. She’s particularly good at dressage and show jumping and last year won the Barbados leg of the FEI World Jumping Challenge. Her partnership with Super Trooper took her to the top of the BEA Super League 2 Jumping Competition in 2011, and she has lofty ambitions to eventually reach the World Equestrian Games and the Olympics. Heather is a talented all rounder and was also a promising athlete until her equestrian passion took over and although she would love to race and play polo, that is not on the agenda of her coaches Di Clarke, Sara Jones and of course…. her mum!

Emily Kinch doesn’t remember the first time she sat on a horse, but she’s been told she was only six months old at the time! Now Emily rides, trains and competes six days a week on the North American circuit. Emily is a descendant of the Kinch and Bourne families, two names that are synonymous with horseracing in Barbados. She’s 19, but has already built up amazing expertise and experience, thanks largely to moving overseas where the competition and the facilities are so much better. She is currently based at the stables of Ian Miller, better known as Captain Canada, the prolific Olympian, and one of the biggest influences on her career to date has been Canadian Eric Lamaze the 2008 Gold Medalist. In addition to being a full-time showjumper, Emily is also a qualified Gnathologist (horse dentist) and her

Visit the new • 86


Mackenzie Manning

Emily Kinch

successes to date are stepping-stones to ultimately competing at GAC and Pan American Games, and eventually the Olympics. Despite her 24/7 commitment to showjumping she does have a soft spot for Canadian ice hockey and follows the fortunes of the Ottawa Senators because of the Barbados connections of the owner Eugene Melnyk.

Mackenzie Manning The youngest of our equestrian ladies is 12 year-old Mackenzie Manning who started her riding career at the age of three. She is the daughter of well-known local polo player Harry Manning and Natalie Manning who regularly competes in Dressage events herself, and therein lies one of the little nuances of being involved in a minority sport in a small island, as Mackenzie indirectly competes against her mum!

Mackenzie Manning

Mackenzie has competed in both the FEI World Dressage Challenge and the CEA Mini Dressage Challenge in the Children’s Preliminary Class. Her qualifying score for FEI last year enabled her to compete at CADI (Children of the Americas Dressage Invitational), which was held in Boston in August. She competed well and finished the reserve champion of the overseas riders. Mackenzie is a student at St. Winifred’s School, but with such strong equestrian interests she is destined for a career that involves horses, with dressage being her main focus. She is trained by both Roberta Foster and Gina Hunte, who have represented Barbados in Dressage with distinction, so she is very privileged to have two experts teaching her the demanding skills of the sport. The Manning family is steeped in equestrian activities and Mackenzie is ideally placed to pursue her passion. But


dressage events are limited in number and she longs for more competition on the island. Mackenzie has a strong bond with her new horse Sisco, but in the runup to the US competition, she practiced on a number of other horses at Congo Road Stables. These included her mum’s horse, India, and the strategy enabled her to build confidence and experience from riding different animals. She’s young and talented, and certainly a young lady to watch out for in the future.

Emily Kinch


MOTOR SPORT by Mark Wheeler

Sailor Gully special stage - Sol Rally Barbados 2011

Visit the new • 88


Williams Industries International Race Meet at the Bushy Park race circuit

Motoring mania The journey from the Grantley Adams International Airport to hotel or villa is enough for those with Robin Bradford even a passing interest to realise that Barbadians – or Bajans, as they are commonly known – like their cars. Apart from all else, there are just so many of them! At only 21 miles long by 14 wide, Barbados ranks equal sixth in the world for road density, with an intricate network of around 1,600 kilometres of paved roads (albeit some of the ‘paving’ is a tad questionable). It also has well in excess of 100,000 registered road vehicles . . . that’s more than 400 for every 1,000 people. And a good percentage of those are not your ordinary econoboxes. Even if they are, they will almost certainly boast body kits, tinted windows, aftermarket rims, even lowered suspension . . . and don’t

Thanks to its diverse nature, motor sport has two major annual events, as the BRC and BARL each stages a keynote fixture. Sol Rally Barbados is the region’s biggest motor sport international; a two-day tarmac rally run on closed public roads in early June, it attracts up to 100 local, regional and international crews and around 20,000 spectators. 89

Paul ‘the surfer’ Bourne


Allan Mackay performing for the crowds in his Ford Anglia ‘WRC’ during Sol Rally Barbados 2011

be shocked if you see a minibus or two – these privately-owned yellow buses supplement the Barbados Transport Board infrastructure – carrying a rear spoiler that wouldn’t look out of place on a racetrack single-seater! There have been cars in the island since the early years of the 20th century, and the first motor sport competition – a hillclimb won by Harold Manning,

founder of a motor sport dynasty now in its third generation - was held nearly 80 years ago; the Barbados Rally Club (BRC) celebrated its 50th Anniversary in 2007, while the Barbados Auto Racing League (BARL) last year marked the 40th Anniversary of the opening of the island’s racetrack, Bushy Park (which was created and run in the 1970s, then the ‘90s, by the BRC).

The BRC and BARL are among seven member clubs of the Barbados Motoring Federation, the island’s governing body, which annually issues around 400 competition licences . . . all of motor sport’s disciplines are covered, rallying (including historics) and circuit racing joined by autocross, dexterity, drag racing, karting and off-road navigational rallies.

Sol Aviation Super Special stage at the end of Sol Rally Barbados 2011

Visit the new • 90


UK National Champion - Roger Duckworth

Sol’s Gina Cummins with Class winners Shannon Kirton and Lisa Roett

Motor sport high-rollers Thanks to its diverse nature, motor sport has two major annual events, as the BRC and BARL each stages a keynote fixture. Sol Rally Barbados is the region’s biggest motor sport international; a twoday tarmac rally run on closed public roads in early June, it attracts up to 100 local, regional and international crews

and around 20,000 spectators. As well as bringing a range of exciting and exotic cars – and some equally exotic owners – to the island, Sol RB injects more Bds $2 million to the island’s economy (much of it in valuable foreign exchange) and accounts for around 2,500 visitor nights at a traditionally quiet time in the tourism calendar.

Nearly 260 overseas competitors from 22 countries have competed in the event over the past decade or so, which helps generate extensive television coverage; in 2011 alone, an estimated 30 hours was broadcast to 550 million homes worldwide. While the annual Williams Digicel International Race Meet in August does

Visit the new • 92


Barry Mayers leads Stuart Williams onto the back straight at Bushy Park

not have the same international status, it nevertheless accounts for significant inter-regional travel, as motor sport fans follow the Seaboard Marine Caribbean Motor Racing Championship. Equipped with ever-more sophisticated machinery, the region’s best race in Jamaica in May, before Barbados and the Guyana final in

November. A lunchtime ceremony at the 2011 Race Meet marked the circuit’s 40th Anniversary, the ‘Legends of Bushy Park’ assembled for the occasion including Britain’s Gordon Spice, who was among the first international competitors in the island in the 1970s.

Visit the new • 94


Jamal Brathwaite by Mark Wheeler Motor sport all-rounder While most concentrate on a single discipline, one competitor in the island has crossed more boundaries than most . . . and has now even joined the ranks of the ‘establishment’, as Secretary of the BRC, no less. Step forward Jamal Brathwaite! Born into a family that had been around the sport for years – his father collected more than a few trophies ‘back in the day’ – Jamal first came to notice winning the Novice Driver title in the BRC’s inaugural Navigational Championship in 2004; he switched seats to win the Novice Navigator title the following year, as he sought to expand his knowledge and expertise. Driving soon become a priority – as part of Normal Catwell’s ‘Chicken Pen Racing’ collective, which has helped many youngsters into the sport, Jamal

built and debuted a Toyota Corolla late in 2007. Contesting the BRC’s Modified 6 category was a brave choice, considering the established front-runners, but Jamal finished third at year-end in his first full season (including a Class win on day two of Sol RB08). With a Mitsubishi Colt replacing the Corolla, he progressed to second place in ‘09, then Champion in 2010.

He has also tried circuit racing, with less success, and autocross - joint BRC Champion in 2010 - where skill, not speed, is key. He also won the Richard Roett Memorial Trophy, named for one of the BRC’s much-missed characters, the citation for which speaks to “attitude, commitment and contribution”, qualities Brathwaite offers in full measure.


The Local Scene The History & The BIG Match

Visit the new • 98


Barbados rugby has grown in stature over the past decade and while it has a long way to go to impact the international game, there are few better locations to mix pleasure with your favourite sporting passion. Rugby tours to the island are an integral part of the sport and visiting teams can be assured of a warm welcome, competitive rugby and some great hospitality. Rugby on the island involves four clubs and is played mostly at the Garrison within the racetrack. The setting is magnificent, especially on a busy race day with horses streaming all around the race track and crowds in the main stand shouting their favourite home. And for local sports fans two bites of the cherry as you can watch the rugby and the racing at the same time from a great vantage point. The Garrison has been the main centre of sport in Barbados for over 150 years and owes its existence to the Royal Engineers who drained the area and made it suitable for army drilling and parades. Inevitably it also became the main area for sport and leisure, a tradition that has been continued into modern times. The Garrison arena is surrounded by military buildings and the area inside the track is used for a plethora of sports. The local rugby scene was developed from an ex-pat structure in the 1960’s aided and abetted by infrequent visits form naval ships. Visiting ships and tales of tough matches and even tougher after-match drinking sessions have been embellished over the years to form part of Barbados rugby folklore, but some of it seems a far cry from the modern scene. The after match revelry still

exists, but the modern rugby player is a local and has worked his way through youth teams into the adult game. That speaks volumes for the dedication and vision of a number of ex-pats and local players who took the game into the schools 15 years ago and stayed with the initiative even when everyone around was saying it won’t succeed. But it did, and now the island boosts four senior clubs and a ladies team, mostly made up of local players. Against formidable odds, that’s real progress! Competitive rugby in the Caribbean involves a regional competition with the other islands and the possibility of a World Cup qualification. That in itself shows the extent to which Barbados rugby has advanced in modern times. To think in international terms is a new mind-set although it has to be said the locals have enjoyed the company of rugby legends Gareth Edwards, Jeremy Guscoff, Mike Catt and Victor Obogu, albeit some years back. The welcoming mat was also rolled out for the Canadian national team in a World qualifier a few years ago, but despite a gallant effort and some rousing support, Barbados came up a long way short. But it was another


“Barbados rugby has grown in stature over the past decade and while it has a long way to go to impact the international game, there are few better locations to mix pleasure with your favourite sporting passion. Rugby tours to the island are an integral part of the sport and visiting teams can be assured of a warm welcome, competitive rugby and some great hospitality.”


step in the right direction to have reached that level as Caribbean champions. In the past the local game revolved around one team and matches were more social than sporting, in some cases just a prelude to a drinking session. Today, Barbados rugby has a solid infrastructure involving both adult and youth teams, and it entertains clubs, schools and naval teams from all over the world. Some of our best players have graduated to clubs in England and overseas coaches have come to Barbados to help promote and develop the sport in the schools. Attendances have also increased at the top matches, and at the televised rugby matches where all the armchair rugby enthusiasts and visitors gather during the international season. Friendly banter, a few beers and great rugby entertainment are integral parts of the sport’s culture and the camaraderie in Barbados is just as strong as anywhere else in the world. That’s very evident on big match days when the biggest crowds gather at the Garrison to watch the national team play a visiting island. Match days have a great buzz and they also attract visitors who are on island in

addition to the local supporters. Barbadians are passionate about their sport and both men and women join together to back the national rugby team. Cars and spectators line the Drill Hall side of the gound and picnic hampers and cooler-boxes are essential items for the keen spectator. Après- rugby is centred on the clubhouse where the players and their supporters have been known to pass a few hours in social interchange discussing the finer point of the game. After that, there’s always St

Lawrence Gap and a whole new world of Barbados nightlife. And therein lies the magic of a rugby visit to Barbados – the chance to play and mix with fellow rugby souls and to enjoy all the attributes of an idyllic Caribbean holiday. Think about it when the rain is lashing down on a cold November evening and you are just about to step outside for two hours training! Sorry, forgot to mention the sand, sea and sunshine here!

Visit the new • 100


The Local Scene The Sailing Season & The Mount Gay Regatta

Visit the new • 102


Sailing in Barbados has been energized by a huge surge of popularity in J24 racing. Many local sailing enthusiasts have switched or joined the 24 racing class and as a result there is a greater buzz around the local scene. Sailing in Barbados goes back as far as history allows because only the best and most adventurous sailors could have reached our island, the most easterly in the Caribbean family. In the modern world sailing is either recreational or commercial, and as a popular holiday destination, Barbados has both. The enthusiastic sailors operate from the Yacht Club in beautiful Carlisle Bay, while the commercial catamarans and the fun boats operate from the Careenage and Shallow Draft in Bridgetown. The centre of Barbados sailing remains the historic Yacht Club where the Barbados Sailing Association members dock their boats and enjoy the sport and social facilities. The old colonial façade of the Clubhouse appears

like a dinosaur in modern times, but it is a hub of activity with its busy restaurant/bar and bustling beach facilities. Formerly known as Shot Hall, it was once the home of the Royal Engineers, but is now the headquarters of a thriving sport. In addition to promoting and developing sailing within its membership, the Association provides sailing classes and has gone to great lengths to make sailing available for young people in the wider community. The Yacht Club scene is as much social as it is sporting. Throughout the week sailors come and go about their business against a background of two busy restaurants. The main restaurant at the clubhouse is primarily used for business lunches by the members and their guests, while the beach facilities are extensively used for relaxation and entertaining overseas visitors. At weekends the beach facilities are buzzing with activities. Most of the competitive sailing also takes place at weekends and throughout the year there is a packed itinerary of events. The racing is predominantly in the Carlisle Bay and South Coast area close to the club, but some races go up the West Coast.


“The highlight of the racing season is the Mount Gay Regatta held in late May at the end of the Caribbean Regatta Season. Dubbed the Fun Regatta because of its demanding social itinerary, the event attracts some of the best sailors in the region and stirs up tense rivalry amongst the leading crews.� The highlight of the racing season is the Mount Gay Regatta held in late May at the end of the Caribbean Regatta Season. Dubbed the Fun Regatta because of its


Prince Edward at the Royalist Regatta

demanding social itinerary, the event attracts some of the best sailors in the region and stirs up tense rivalry amongst the leading crews. But behind the competitive sailing, the Mount Gay Regatta is renowned for long-standing friendships and camaraderie, some going back over 25 years. The regatta is spread over three days action (May 17-20 2012) culminating in a lively presentation ceremony at the Yacht Club on the Sunday afternoon. The races include a number of sailing and cruising classes, and they all start and finish in Carlisle Bay. The regatta is a spectacular

scene with over 40 boats weaving past the many boats that are moored in the bay, and passing under the canon guns at Needham Point, that poignantly recall a more hostile maritime history. Mount Gay Rum has been the regatta’s sponsor since inception and their former marketing manager Peter Marshall has been a driving force in establishing the event as one of the top sporting promotions in Barbados. Crews have traveled from all over the world to participate and your sailing CV would be incomplete without a Mount Gay Regatta win listed amongst the successes.

In recent times the highly competitive J24 class has attracted most entries and produced some thrilling finishes. With all the boats of similar standard, skill and sailing expertise wins the day, and of course, the bragging rights back at the Yacht Club. Yes, the crews are fiercely competitive on the water, but back on shore they love the company of fellow sailors and the camaraderie of sailing. The Mount Gay Regatta dates back to 1986 and there is a great buzz on the island when the event takes place. Mount Gay is the oldest rum in Barbados and through sailing

Visit the new • 104


sponsorship the rum is known worldwide, and by association many people across the globe know of Barbados. Scarlet red caps and shirts are synonomous with Mount Gay regattas, and the red caps are popular collector’s items in sailing memorabilia. The complete set of 25 Barbados Mount Gay Regatta caps would fetch a pricey sum on eBay these days! Visiting crews travel with friends and supporters and a strong tradition has

been established with the sailors from Trinidad and Tobago. Most of the crews and their followers end the day’s racing with a few drinks at the Barbados Yacht Club, and social events are planned every evening during the regatta culminating in the Sunday afternoon presentation ceremony blowout! A lot of nostalgia and tradition is built around sailing’s history and the Barbados scene is no exception. The Carlisle Bay area has witnessed many

epic sea battles hundreds of years ago as hostile European fleets bombarded the island, but Barbados was never invaded and those canon guns at Needham Point have played a huge part in the island’s heritage. Local sailing has come a long way from hosting Lord Nelson’s fleet and staving off the enemies. Healthy competition at the Mount Gay Regatta on and off the water is as close as it gets to maritime warfare in 2012!

Visit the new • 106


The Local Scene, the Club Tour & The Banks International Hockey Festival

Visit the new • 108


It would be easy to think that Barbados Hockey is the Bank’s International Hockey Festival and nothing else such is the reputation of this unique tournament all over the world. But the local hockey fraternity has a lot more to offer than its popular hockey extravaganza, albeit it remains the highlight on the local hockey calendar. Organised hockey on the island dates back over 50 years and the local governing body is the Barbados Hockey Federation which includes both men and ladies. The game is played within a club structure and at many of the local schools. The sport got a huge boost in the last decade after an Astroturf pitch was laid at Wildey and virtually all the top league games and tournaments were based there. Unfortunately the pitch needed repairs in 2011 and most of the matches were re-scheduled on grass pitches. The local league structure is very


“The biggest event on the Barbados Hockey calendar remains the Bank’s International Hockey Festival held at the end of August. First established in 1986, it has exceeded everyone’s expectations and it remains one of the top events in local sports tourism. The tournament has a simple and winning formula – you play competitive hockey in the daytime, and you party in the evening.”


competitive and national teams have competed in international competitions, including the Commonwealth Games Both the men and the ladies national teams are ranked in the top 60 in the world. There are over 20 hockey clubs in Barbados and an estimated 650 players plus the schools. In addition to organizing and developing local hockey, the Hockey Federation has hosted a number of regional and international tournaments at youth and senior level at the Astroturf. The Federation is currently pro-active in a number of new initiatives under their visionary president George Bennett. Many clubs and schools tour Barbados throughout the year in addition to the

clubs that participate in the Bank’s Festival. The weather, culture and sporting ambience make it an excellent destination for tours and local schools have gone to great lengths to accommodate visiting teams. The Hockey Federation and the National Sports Council, are also very helpful in providing information and arranging fixtures. But the biggest event on the Barbados Hockey calendar remains the Bank’s International Hockey Festival held at the end of August. First established in 1986, it has exceeded everyone’s expectations and it remains one of the top events in local sports tourism. The tournament has a simple and winning formula – you

play competitive hockey in the daytime, and you party in the evening. The festival is lauded as much for its social itinerary as its hockey, and the close alignment between players and the sponsor’s product is an integral part of the tournament’s culture. The social scene is vibrant, varied and demanding, with events on most nights. It takes a lot of will power and discipline to last the week! It is the participation of overseas teams that makes the festival, and over the years clubs from all over the world have journeyed to the Caribbean for the region’s top hockey festival. And in addition to their overseas culture, these popular visitors have entered into the

Ricky Clarke - an institution

Visit the new • 110


spirit of the festival with colourful attire and some amazing names. Who could forget Pigs will Fly, Wonderful Fluffy Sheep and Auld Reekies from Scotland? The locals have also embraced the festival with similar gusto, especially the Old Gold Roosters, a nomadic club made up of Barbados players, visitors and just about anyone who enjoys fun hockey. But don’t underestimate the funloving locals – they party hard but they play to win. Few overseas teams last the distance and when it comes to Finals Day on Saturday, most of the teams left standing are Barbadian! Amongst the regular social events are the traditional welcome and opening ceremony, the Talent Night at the Ship Inn, the Festival cruise, the Festival

dinner and a ribald presentation ceremony. Last year the dinner was held in honour of the late Mike Owen, a founding member of the festival who passed away earlier in the year. Matches were played at Bank’s sports club, Police grounds at Weymouth and the magnificent Kensington Oval in the absence of a sick Astroturf. Over 42 teams participated including visitors from United States, Canada, Switzerland, England, Trinidad and Tobago. The Queen’s Park Cricket Club from Port of Spain returned after a 12 years absence, while others have been coming year after year. Competitions are in four categories – mens, ladies, mixed and veterans, and it is always good to plan early as a number

of hotels known to the Hockey Federation offer special festival packages. Some visiting clubs plan their visit around a Caribbean holiday either before or after the festival which has a week of activities. There are many aspects of the hockey festival that make it special and add to its success, but the support and commitment of the sponsor Bank’s Beer is very special. Sponsors of every event since it started in 1986, Bank’s go much further than present a sponsorship cheque and give their full commitment to all the activities and provide their products at concessionary rates in the hockey village. That’s the spirit of festival hockey and one of the reasons why this festival has genuine staying power.

Visit the new • 112


Run Barbados The Sweat, the Tears, the Satisfaction!

Visit the new • 114


The Run Barbados Series is sponsored by the Barbados Tourism Authority and smartly marketed under the slogan – “Come for the run-stay for the sun!” It is an apt name for an event that combines serious running with fun runners and fitness enthusiasts. The series has a wide range of events spread over three days and is traditionally held on the first weekend in December. Where else would you want to start the festive season but in beautiful Barbados, and to combine it with the Run Barbados Series must be utopia for runners? The event dates back to 1983 and it has attracted a number of world-class athletes, running clubs and fun runners from all over the world. Canada and UK runners used to dominate participants, but in recent years the overseas entry list has expanded to include the talented Kenyans, Nigerians, Europeans and a host of runners from neighbouring islands. Of course, we must never forget

the locals, as this is one event that has captured their imagination, which is why many enthusiastic runners prepare for months in advance. One of the big attractions of the Run Barbados Series is the unique setting and for the longer events, a course that takes runners through picturesque Bridgetown and up the idyllic West Coast at sunrise. The shorter events are concentrated around our old colonial capital with its narrow, winding streets and historic buildings. All events finish at the Esplanade on the South Coast, just outside the Prime Minister’s Office, and beside beautiful Carlisle Bay. Little wonder most of the runners dive into the sea just after passing the finish line. Many running clubs travel from the UK and North America to participate and combine their athletic passion with a Caribbean holiday. Local hotels offer special packages and the organizers also align with known tour operators to make travel and accommodation as simple and as economic as possible. Overseas runners have made the Run Barbados Series highly popular, which is why many local spectators flock to the events, even when they start in darkness on Sunday morning for the marathon.


“One of the big attractions of the Run Barbados Series is the unique setting and for the longer events, a course that takes runners through picturesque Bridgetown and up the idyllic West Coast at sunrise.”


The hub of the organization is the Esplanade where many of the sporting and social side-events are staged. The series starts with the Fun Mile on Friday Night and finishes with the Marathon on Sunday morning. In between a wide range of events embrace 3K, 5K, and half-marathon races, with competitions for wheelchair, schools and clubs. One important aspect of the event is the heavy emphasis placed on charity and many runners generate sponsorship for worthy causes. The designated charity of the 2011 events was the Little Pink Gift Foundation, a wellknown breast cancer charity. The Run Barbados Series has a rich history for attracting top athletes, and some of them have become colourful personalities closely associated with the event. The diminutive Boston runner Kim Goff is a big favourite and with ten marathon wins to her name, she has set a phenomenal record that is unlikely to be broken. Another big favourite and staunch supporter is Hugh Jones, the legendary British marathon runner, who has won the event several times. In recent years the great Victor Ledger from St. Lucia has been a multiple winner while the husband and wife combination

of Kenyans Phillip Lagat and Penina Sawe created their own niche in history with a unique family double. This fun event has a special atmosphere and although the athletes take their running seriously, there are plenty of social and cultural events that combine to make it a genuine sporting

festival. Barbados has a vibrant nightlife and it is a beautiful Caribbean island so there’s plenty to enjoy once the serious business of running is over! For more information visit the event website or contact Angela Wilkinson at Tel 246 467 3660

Visit the new • 116


Matt has the world at his feet Barbadian athlete Matt Wright has the athletics world at his feet, or perhaps more precisely in his sights. The talented young triathlete is good enough to get to the Olympic Games, but 2012 came too early so his more realistic goals are the 2014 Commonwealth Games and the annual Triathlon World Championships. Twenty-year-old Matt is a second year student at Loughborough University, the main British Triathlon training centre and he’s already fully entrenched into their High Performance Training Plan under the supervision of his coach Gavin Smith. He trains with Under-23 World Champion Matt Sharp and acknowledges Loughborough’s excellent triathlon facilities are currently leading the world in this demanding sport. Matt is one of a number of promising young Barbadian athletes and he’s fully

aware of what it takes to get to the top in sport, and he has the focus, determination, ability and opportunity to get there. Like most aspiring young athletes, the lack of facilities and competition makes it imperative to go overseas, but with an English dad and extended family, Matt’s move to the Motherland was relatively straightforward. Loughborough not only offered the best facilities, but the back up sports science and sports therapy to get to the top. The facilities at this dynamic sports Mecca are phenomenal. Like many talented young Barbadians Matt Wright loves sport, and he’s a natural at surfing, football and cricket. However, it is his running ability that has taken him to the higher level in athletics and he’s become better and better at both cycling and swimming to complete the high standards required for triathlon.

To date Matt has a string of CARIFTA Games medals to his name, but he’s got his sights on much bigger goals in the future, including his degree in sports science and management. In between he hopes to represent Barbados in Scotland at the 2014 Commonwealth Games and then at the Olympics in Rio in 2016. He’s a charming young man with the world at his feet, but he’s very proud of his homeland – “Barbados is a great place to holiday or to set up a warm weather training camp. We have sand, sea and sunshine to die for!” Watch out for Matt Wright.




Football Scene, Football Celebs & The Masters Festival

Visit the new â&#x20AC;˘ 120


The Barbados football scene is lively and enthusiastic but it lags a long way behind its high profile neighbours Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago, internationally known as the Reggae Boyz and the Soca Warriors. The

Tridents play at the National Stadium and their highest FIFA ranking was 92nd back in 2009. The biggest challenge for local football chiefs is lifting the sport to a higher level, a development that can only take place through a progression from amateur to semi-professional status. Football is played widely throughout the island, but it is very localized and community orientated. The Premier League features ten teams, but even at


the highest level, the facilities are basic and the quality of pitches poor. In contrast countries like Trinidad and Tobago have numerous modern sports stadia, much of it funded by external international sports bodies like FIFA. Barbados Football needs a visionary plan to step up into the big league of world soccer and within that plan it needs tangible support from governing bodies in football, government and major sponsors.


Petra Roach (centre), Barbados Tourism Authority UK with participants at the Legends Tournament

The national team is the shop window of Barbados football but with a world ranking of 130 plus, a lot of hard work needs to be done at grass-roots level before the top tier can benefit. Most of the national team are local amateurs, supplemented by several players who have won professional contracts at clubs in the US< Ireland and England. There is no doubt that Barbados can produce the talent to reach a higher level, but without the platform to get there the possibility remains a dream.

world and future events are being planned to increase the impact and help raise the profile of both Barbados and its assets, sporting and otherwise. What needs to happen to boost local football is an initiative to use the media spotlight to re-build the sport at club level. The

Legends Tournament did raise the football profile and it did bring out local football fans in support, aided and abetted by Trinidadâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Brian Lara and Dwight Yorke, but it remains to be seen if local soccer chiefs will capitalize on the initiative.

Celebs Last year British Airways and the Professional Footballersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Association (PFA) combined to stage a Football Legends International Tournament in Barbados organized by the Barbados Tourism Authority (BTA). The event helped raise the profile of football as it featured former outstanding international players like the great Gianfranco Zola (Italy), Alan Shearer (England), International television helped by beaming pictures all over the

Visit the new â&#x20AC;˘ 122

The great Gianfranco Zola


Adrian ‘ockey’ Donovan

The Banks International Masters Festival One event that needs no impetus is the Banks International Masters Football Festival staged over the Whitsun weekend and featuring local, regional and international teams. Superbly organized with clockwork precision, every match starting on time, the tournament has built its reputation on sporting fun, Camaraderie and fellowship. Locals mix openly with visiting teams some of whom have been visiting Barbados for many years. If there is one test of longevity, then it is surely repeat visitors, and this festival

has them in abundance. Set around the Wanderers club at Dayrell’s road, matches are also played at Dover. The itinerary involves a heavy social supplement and only the best survive and reach Finals Day on the Monday. Large crowds pack the Wanderers ground for the finals, reminiscent of the club’s great cricketing years when the best players in West Indies cricket plied their trade before the Dayrell’s Road faithful. Bank’s beer is the official beer of the festival and there is an obvious close alignment between the participants and

the sponsor’s product. Masters football is strong in Barbados aver the years this excellent tournament has attracted some household names like former Liverpool star Jimmy Case and Coventry City’s Tommy Hutchinson, both international players of repute. Another interesting participant seven years ago was big Curtley Ambrose, the great west Indian pace bowler who played for one of the Antiguan teams. Personalities and characters are part and parcel of this unique sporting festival. One of the most popular events on the Barbados Sports Tourism calendar.

Visit the new • 124


The Artificial Reefs of Barbados Photographs by Andrew Western

The variety and accessibility of the wrecks off the coast of Barbados has led our island to be known as the wreck diving capital of the Caribbean. Largely purposely sunk these wrecks have brought a number of benefits to recreational divers and the environment. Chief amongst these is their natural development as artificial reefs Artificial reefs generally provide hard surfaces where algae and invertebrates such as barnacles, corals, and oysters attach; the accumulation of attached marine life in turn provides intricate structure and food for assemblages of fish. This interaction creates a complex habitat of living organisms. Artificial reefs tend to develop in more or less predictable stages. First, where an ocean current encounters a vertical structure, it can create a plankton-rich upwelling that provides a reliable feeding spot for small fish. These in turn draw in larger pelagic predators like bluefin tuna and sharks. Next come creatures seeking protection from the ocean's lethal openness. Hole and crevice dwellers such as grouper, snapper, squirrelfish, eels, and triggerfish. Opportunistic predators such as jack and barracuda also appear, waiting for their prey to

Visit the new â&#x20AC;˘ 126


venture out. Over months and years the reef structure becomes encrusted with algae, tunicates, hard and soft corals, and sponges. The wrecks of Barbados now offer great diversity of brilliantly coloured marine life including frog fish, sea horses, rays, barracudas, octopus, reef squid, mackerel, moray eel and more. A vast array of numerous varieties of coral and sponge growth adds orange, yellow, green and purple to the natural palette. The Carlisle Bay protected area is host to seven unique wrecks. This collection of wrecks has been accumulated over many years. These wrecks, lying in 25 40ft of water are all close enough to visit during the same dive. They are host to hundreds of tropicals that will eat from the hands of divers or snorkelers. Rare species such as frog fish, sea horses and batfish are also found at this site. This area is a macro photographer's dream.

Bridgetown Harbour was being constructed in the 1960’s. Subsequently a ‘party boat’ for tourists she was retired and sunk in 2002. At 120 feet long she is the largest wreck of the group. • The Cornwallace, a 60 ft section of a Canadian freighter that was sunk during the Second world War and relocated here in 2000. It is the bow section of the Cornwallace which was cut off and replaced after she was hit by a torpedo during the Second World War. • A naval landing barge sunk in 2003.

• The Berwyn, a 70ft World War One French tug that sunk in 1919. • The Marion Wolf, a small wooden fishing vessel. Sunk by hurricane Janet in 1955, little remains. The keel is visible and offers protection to schools of fish. • Ce-Trek, a derelict 45 foot boat constructed of cement was sunk in January 1986. • The Eillon, a 110 ft freighter sunk in 1996. • The Bajan Queen was Barbados’ first tugboat named the “Pelican” when the

The Pamir

Friars Craig Half a mile to the south of Carlisle Bay lays the Friars Craig, a 165ft freighter in 60 ft of water. Broken in three pieces, the twisted hull of this wreck is great to explore. Dutch island freighter that sank in 1984 about a quarter mile offshore in 55 feet of water.

A 165 ft cargo ship deliberately sunk in 1985. Sister ship to the Friars Craig the Pamir lays on the north western coast, also in 60ft of water. She is still intact and adorned with port holes and tropicals of a dozen varieties. Nearby is also a recently sunk mini yellow submarine.

Stavronikita In 1978 a 400 ton Dutch container ship was towed to a spot just 400 yards


offshore on the west coast of the island. On November 21, 1978, the U.S. Navy demolition crew set seven charges totaling 200 pounds and blew holes in the ship’s hull, causing her to sink. Thus the premier wreck of the Caribbean, the S.S. Stavronikita came to be off the coast of Barbados. This wreck dive is a must. She is 365ft long and sits bolt upright in 130ft. The propeller is the deepest point at around 130 feet. The shallowest part of the wreck is the top of the forward mast at around 20ft Cabin, alleyways and the cargo holds beckon you to peek. The enormous masts which come to within 20ft of the surface are coated with sponges, corals and hundreds of fish. This is one dive you cannot miss.

Lord Combermere. This small steel hulled Barge was sank in the early 1980's. Originally sailing under the name of the Governor of Barbados, the Lord Combermere now rest in shallow clear waters of 40 to 50 feet surrounded by fringing reefs. Abundant marine life and corals envelopes this 70 ft wreck. The natural coral reefs of Barbados are vibrant and healthy but under tremendous pressure from the demands of modern recreation. Artificial reefs can ease this pressure by offering alternative attractions. Enormously popular it is to the great benefit of our natural heritage that these artificial reefs have been created.



Watersports - Surfing, Swimming & Fishing

Brian Talma

Silver Point Hotel on Silver Sands Beach

Watersports covers a wide variety of sporting and leisure activities in Barbados. With beautiful beaches, soft breezes and unlimited ocean there ‘has to be something to suit every taste’. Surfers love Barbados and they come from all over the world to participate. Surfing and cricket are passions that every young Bajan inherits at birth, so it is not surprising some of our best exponents have excelled on the world stage and competed at the Olympics. You can surf on virtually every coast, but it is the East Coast and the Soup Bowl that provide the best surfing conditions virtually all year round. The Soup Bowl

also has a unique surfing ambience and the easy- going casual laidback culture is as much part of the surfing scene as the warm refreshing sea-spray that seems never ending at Bathsheba. There’s no starting or finishing times either, as surf boards strapped to the roof can be seen heading east all day. And there’s plenty of action for all age groups including competitions throughout the year including the National Championships in November. Surfing schools also offer coaching facilities for novices and some of the tutors like Alan Burke are former national champions. There are also excellent kitesurfing and windsurfing facilities in Barbados. The most popular location is Silver Sands Beach on the South Coast, one of the best locations in the world for these sports. Silver Sands has consistent tropical breezes all year round, and the

reef just off the coast ensures the waves are ideal. The surfing community love Silver Sands and one of the island’s great watersports exponents has a shop overlooking the beach. Brian ‘Irieman’ Talma is the best known windsurfer in the Caribbean and an international watersports personality who has traveled the world to promote and compete. ‘Irie Man’ is also a great visionary and in recent times he has added the gentle discipline of paddle surfing to his many sporting attributes. Silver Sands Beach is also the location of the Silver Point Hotel, a popular boutique hotel that welcomes the surfing community and provides a welcome haven for the other members of the family who may not be as energetic. Despite being on island, there was a time when young Barbadians were reluctant to learn to swim. All that changed when the Aquatic centre at

Visit the new • 128



Meet Rodney Howell, aka 'Sandy' who is in charge of watersports at Southern Palms Beach Hotel! Rodney was voted by the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association Employee of the Year for the whole Region!!!! Well done Rodney and Barbados!!!

Josh Burke

Wildey was built with its impressive 50 metre championship pool and learner’s pool. The Aquatic Centre is a hive of activity most days as swimming schools ensure the current generation of young Barbadians not only learn to swim, but aspire to lofty heights if they have the talent and the dedication. Barbados has produced some outstanding young swimmers who have competed successfully at international events. The Aquatic centre has been the catalyst that has provided the platform for swimming excellence. It has also been used extensively for regional

competitions and warm-weather training by overseas teams. Watersports embrace sports fishing and the island boasts a small, but enthusiastic fishing community. For over 50 years sports fishing has been the passion of many Barbadians, mostly at weekends. The conditions are ideal for game fishing and the Barbados Game Fishing Association has done much to promote and develop the sport at a local and international audience. The highlight of the game fishing calendar is the International Fishing Festival held in March and centred on

the excellent facilities of Port St Charles. Over 200 anglers and 30 boats compete over a weekend of sporting fun culminating in a raucous presentation party. Visitors from all over the world have participated, but if you prefer the peace and tranquility of your own private charter, then there are plenty of options available. Charters normally include snacks and refreshments, but there are no guarantees about catching fish! That’s part of the mystique of this intriguing sport – you never know what’s at the other end of the line!

Visit the new • 130



Ball Sports - Basketball, Netball & Volleyball

Minister of Tourism Richard Sealy with the cheerleaders from the Dallas Mavericks and local team Act II Popcorn Clapham Bulls

Basketball thrives all over the island and is one of the top sports at most schools. At one stage the success of basketball was blamed for the demise of cricket, but that myth has all but disappeared in recent times. Basketball offers promising young players the gateway to a brighter future with scholarships and the possibility of professional contracts in the US. Only the best players aspire to such lofty status as the competition is keen. The national team has performed well in regional competition. Basketball also has a thriving ladies

section and the top international games are held at the Sir Garfield Sobers Gymnasium at Wildey. Netball is the top female sport in Barbados at both clubs and schools. Many netball teams come on tour and both the Netball Association and the Schools go to great lengths to accommodate visitors. The sport has its own National Stadium and a competitive senior league structure. Although the national team has not performed as well as in the past, Barbados finished 13th of the 2011 World Championships in Singapore and currently retains a Top Ten world ranking. Netball tours combine holidays with sport in an idyllic setting, but visitors should not be fooled as Barbadian teams are very competitive, and are rarely beaten on their home territory.

Volleyball is governed by the Barbados Volleyball Association and has been an active sport for over 60 years. The national teams, both ladies and men, have dominated Caribbean Volleyball over the past decade, although in recent times their invincibility has been breached. All the top matches are staged at the Sir Garfield Sobers Gymnasium, but at club level, matches are played all over the island including the beaches. Many hotels have volleyball courts for informal games, and some of the most enjoyable volleyball has involved dozens of tourists who simply join in the fun of beach volleyball. One of the biggest events in the volleyball calendar is the Sizzlin Sands Beach Two Day Competition in November that attracts overseas entrants and large crowds to Brandons Beach on the West Coast.

Visit the new â&#x20AC;˘ 132



Racket & Bat Sports Tennis, Squash & Badminton

Tennis is enjoyed in several forms in Barbados and one of the disciplines is indigenous to the island. The main form is played on tennis courts all over the island and in many hotels and popular sports locations like Rockley Golf Club and Barbados Yacht Club. The impressive facilities at Sugar Hill in St James form part of a visionary tennis lifestyle real estate complex in a stunning setting. The headquarters of Barbados tennis is located an impressive complex at the Sir Garfield Sobers Gymnasium at Wildey where the major tournaments are staged. Coaching is available for all ages and one of the busiest coaching centres is at the Rockley Courts where the ebullient Lou Fuentes is head coach. “Big Lou” has introduced tennis to hundreds of youngsters over the years and is widely regarded as the best coach on the island. Tournaments are held all year round including the world ranking International Youth Tournament that attracts young players from over 30 countries. Table tennis is well organized with a local league structure and national teams

that participate in regional competitions. The game is also played extensively within the schools. The most interesting version of tennis is road tennis which historically has been dubbed ‘the poor man’s tennis’. This description has long since disappeared but owes its origins to the crude equipment used to play road tennis in the early days. The sport is regarded as indigenous to the island and in its embryonic form it was played on a tabletennis court chalked out on the road. A piece of wood was used for the net and the bats were old hand made wooded bats. The ball was a well-worn tennis ball and the scoring was similar to tabletennis. Courts were scattered all over the island in the most usual places, and in the rural areas competition was keen. It was not unusual for roads to be blocked by large crowds in the old days and traffic had to seek an alternative route. The modern game has retained much of its character, although courts are now found in community parks, playgrounds and at some hotels. The sport has an enthusiastic following and some colourful characters all of which combine to ensure it has a high profile and secure future. Barbados are the regional squash champions and amongst their players, Karen Meakins has been the most

dominant ladies player in the Caribbean over the past decade. She was the 2010 Barbados Sports Personality of the Year and remains a driving force in regional and international competitions. The centre of squash is at Marine Gardens on the South Coast and the game is played at all age levels and includes both sexes. The Barbados Squash Association is a thriving visionary governing body and goes to great lengths to welcome visiting players and supporters to Barbados. The gentle sport of Badminton dates back to ancient Greece and Egypt but it did not evolve as a recognized sport until the 1870s when the British army reinvented it in India. It took a long time coming to Barbados because it was over 100 years later that a small group of friends set up the Pioneers Badminton Club in 1981. Two years later the Barbados Badminton Association was founded and it remains the governing body of the sport on the island. It has a small but enthusiastic following through clubs and schools. Some of the best players have enjoyed success at international events and Barbados has hosted the Caribbean Championships on several occasions. Amazingly some of the founding members of Barbados badminton are still involved in the sport, testimony to a devoted and passionate interest in the game and its future.

Visit the new • 134



Combat Sports Karate, Judo & Boxing

Peter Warren (left front), Sensei H. Okazaki (right front) and the class

Various forms of combat sports take place in Barbados and they include judo, wresting, boxing, kickboxing, karate and Olympic Taekowando. The Barbados Shotokan Karate Club dates its origins to 1978 and is based on the principles of Shotokan Dojo Kun. Karate has proved extremely popular amongst all age groups and amongst its leading exponents is 7th Dan Peter Warren, national coach and the driving force behind the successful Ursuline Convent Karate Club. Many youngsters have been introduced to karate through

Peter’s classes and there’s no prettier sight than to see them perform their skills in full regalia watched by their peers. Karate is based on sound principles of discipline and respect, and the same could be said for judo. The Barbados Judo Association was founded in 1966 and it is well structured with four affiliated clubs. The association organizes a full programme of events including the Barbados Open which attracts entrants from neighbouring islands. The Association also works closely with the schools to promote and develop the game at all age levels. The top players aspire to Commonwealth Games and top international tournaments. Boxers from all over the world descended on Barbados in 2010 for the

ABA Women’s World Boxing Championships, but the anticipated impetus from this huge promotion has been subdued. Boxing has its passionate support in Barbados, but like many minor sports it is in pockets of enthusiastic participants rather than having a national presence. Both male and female boxing takes place, and like other combat sports, the discipline and training build character and self-esteem. Professional boxing promotions take place at sporadic times during the year and Barbados boxing teams also perform with distinction at Commonwealth Games and Pan Am events. Unfortunately geographic and financial restrictions also curtail development of both amateur and professional boxing in Barbados despite the enthusiasm and dedication of the local boxing fraternity.

Visit the new • 136



Mind Sports - Chess, Warri, Draughts & Dominoes

They may not be the most energetic of sports, but the mind games are played with great passion and enthusiasm in Barbados. The origins of chess can be traced back over 100 years when international matches were staged in Barbados against the other islands. The governing body of the sport is the Barbados Chess Federation and tournaments are held throughout the year. Chess also thrives amongst the schools. Warri is a game that traces its origins back to Ancient Egypt when it was played amongst the tribes of the Nile Valley. It was brought to the Caribbean by African slaves and still exists in small pockets in Barbados. Warri is a board game

sometimes referred to as the Rolls Royce of mind games because it is complex and challenging. Its existence owes much to the enthusiasm of leading exponent Lee Farnum-Badley who not only provides lessons on the game, but makes authentic Warri boards, which are innovative and original gifts. Warri is believed to be the first ever board game dating back to 7,000 BC. The board game involves the capture of stones in squares and the object is to capture more than half of the 48 stones. Two players are involved. Draughts has a small but enthusiastic following in Barbados including a world champion! - Ronald ‘Suki’ King. Suki is a huge personality on the island and he has traveled all over the world to participate in top competitions. This master of the checkerboard learned the game in the back streets and rum shops of his home country and during the 1990s picked up a number of titles in

various disciplines to establish himself as an international draughts champion. “Slamming a dom’ has been a favourite past-time of Barbadians for decades and throughout the island visitors are often intrigued at the sight of men huddling around tables in car parks or side streets or under trees. Dominoes is a much loved recreation and usually involves a dollar or two as a side stake to rouse the passion. The game is well organized with league structures and national teams. One of the most popular gifts taken home by visitors is a set of Bank’s Beer dominoes! Dominoes are played by everyone including some of the island’s leading personalities. Former Prime Minister, the Rt Hon Owen Arthur is a passionate enthusiast and Sir Garfield Sobers the great cricketer is widely regarded as a star of dominoes. Don’t just watch it – slam a dom!

Visit the new • 138

Hurricane,Security & Sun Protection



Healthy Sports - Fitness, Jogging & Trekking

The Hash House Harriers in action

We live in an age where a huge emphasis is placed on health and fitness. All over the world people have opted for a healthy lifestyle and even on holiday, they donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t want to drop their standards and routine. Fortunately many Barbadians are also devoted to health and fitness and there are excellent facilities to accommodate most fitness options. The island boasts a number of public gyms which offer short-term membership for the keen enthusiasts. Many hotels also offer fitness facilities for both guests and visitors. At the other end of the fitness ladder, body-building is the ultimate pursuit for those serious

enthusiasts that want to perfect their body and compete in local and regional competitions. National Bodybuilding and Fitness Championships are held annually across various disciplines and involving both sexes. Fun running and jogging is one of the most popular fitness pursuits and although enthusiasts can pursue their passion anywhere at anytime, many joggers prefer the company and relative safety of the Boardwalk, the Garrison and the Sir Garfield Sobers Gymnasium Complex at Wildey. Most joggers frequent these popular locations early in the morning or late afternoon as the sun sets. Barbados also has its own Hash Harriers who meet most Saturdays to run for fun and social enjoyment. Mountain biking has grown in popularity in recent times and Barbados offers some magnificent terrain for both the serious and the enthusiastic

participant. The roads of rural Barbados are light on traffic and they are set in beautiful tropical countryside. Off road the treks can be exhilarating and breathtaking through gullies and rainforest. Bikes are available for hire and some hotels provide them with their activities. Trekking comes in a wide variety of disciplines. Some hotels organize their own treks, some centres offer walking, biking and horseback treks, and the National Trust offers extensive programme of walks and treks of historical and geographical interest. Finally there is the ultimate fitness challenge of the triathlon. Biking, running and swimming in a competition may not fit everyoneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s health and fitness palate, but it does promote our best athletes and the Barbados triathletes take their sport very seriously. Get out there and enjoy!

Visit the new â&#x20AC;˘ 140



Riding Sports Equestrian, Showjumping & Cycling

Horses have been an integral part of Barbados society from the first days of British settlement as far back as 1627. The plantocracy lifestyle involved many working horses and for hundreds of years horseback and horse-drawn carts were the only forms of transport on the island. The affiliation with the horse inevitably spread into social and recreational use and it was a natural development for the British Calvary officers stationed around the Garrison to organize racing and eventually polo matches. A lot has happened since, but the thriving racing and polo communities owe their origins to those early pioneers in equestrian history. Other equestrian pursuits like show jumping and dressage developed later but there is no doubt they existed in

some form during the embryonic years of equestrian sport. There was a Barbados Show-jumping Federation in existence over 50 years ago, but the stimulus for the minority equestrian interests came from the founding of the Barbados Equestrian Association in the 1970s. Initially show jumping was the main pursuit, but in 1992 dressage was added and a whole new impetus was generated. The popularity of both horseracing and polo in the modern era has boosted interest in all equestrian sports. More horses are on the island and the spin-off has been more interest in a junior level in riding. The local equestrian enthusiasts have gone to great lengths to raise the standard of their sport with better ponies and involvement in overseas events but a major benefit has been the influence of top overseas trainers and judges brought in for training clinics and judging. Show-jumping competitions take place throughout the year and show-jumping classes are available for all ages at a number of riding centres. The graceful discipline of dressage is a much more sedate and formal code. Centres like Congo Road in St Philip are

set in magnificent rural Barbados and provide a beautiful country backdrop to these wonderful ponies going through their dressage routines. Barbados boasts road cycling, mountain biking and BMX disciplines at a time when more and more people are looking to cycling as their preferred form of recreation. Road bikers can be seen every day on the winding roads or rural Barbados, and if you are a competitive cyclist then the local union organizes a series of events throughout the year. Cycling has enjoyed a high profile in Barbados for over a decade and some of the island’s best cyclists have excelled at the Commonwealth Games and top international events. Road races are well published and provide exciting entertainment on both rural roads and urban streets. Many of the top Barbados cyclists compete overseas where more competitions take place and the quality of the riders are higher at the meets. The sport is enjoyed at all age levels, especially at Masters events. Many visitors hook up with local clubs when on the island, while others are just as happy ‘doing their own thing’. That’s the beauty of cycling!

Visit the new • 142



Target Sports - Archery, Shooting & Darts

The gentle sport of archery has a small but passionate following in Barbados administered by the Barbados Archery Association. All of the action takes place at Bellevue Gap, Waterford and in addition to the competitions, the Association holds classes to introduce newcomers to the sport. The charge is a modest $10 with the first session free. Archery appeals to all ages and is a genuine family sport where everyone can participate. All equipment is supplied and expert archers ensure the tuition is friendly and enjoyable. The shooting fraternity have several disciplines in Barbados including clay target, rifle and pistol. The Barbados Clay Target Shooting

Association dates back over 50 years and is situated at Searles, close to the ABC Highway and the airport. Enthusiasts from all over the world are regular visitors and in return, club members travel extensively overseas to compete in shooting events or for private shooting holidays. Trap, double trap and skeet competitions are the regular competitions and in addition to the sport, the camaraderie in the clubhouse is as good as it gets! Another excellent clay target facility is located at Kendal Sporting, a few miles from Six Roads in the South East. Kendal is a country club in all but name and offers a wide range of facilities including clay target shooting, indoor and outdoor pistol ranges, a sports bar, restaurant and swimming pool. The Barbados Rifle Association is over 107 years old and has a distinguished history with a strong military pedigree. Pistol shooting, small bore and full bore are the main disciplines enjoyed by the

current membership and the association is very professional and efficient in exercising the highest standards of safety. Competitions are held throughout the year, and members travel overseas to compete. Darts may not sit comfortably alongside archery and shooting, but it is a genuine target sport albeit of a different nature. The game is enjoyed all over the island and understandably it has a rum shop culture, since many of the boards are located there. But the sport has moved outside the bar culture into a wide range of arenas and now boasts both a local and an overseas following after a series of international events in recent years. The biggest overseas event is the Brydenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Barbados Darts Festival held in November which attracts a number of UK names in world darts. Legends like John Lowe, Eric Bristow, Cliff Lazeranko and Wayne Mardle have raised the profile of Barbados darts to an international audience and provided excellent entertainment at the festival.

Visit the new â&#x20AC;˘ 144

Sporting Barbados 2012  

Sports Tourism Publication for Barbados