News Release: HAMILTON, Bermuda – The Bermuda Tourism Authority (BTA_ today announced that SailGP and Hamilton Princess have joined forces to provide a sports bubble environment for the Bermuda Football Association’s National Team.
This as the team prepares for the second round of Concacaf World Cup qualifying matches in Florida in June. The 20-member squad and the associated BFA support team will spend a week at the Hamilton Princess with regular training sessions until the Government’s mixing-of-households’ regulations expire.
Organisers of the Bermuda Sail Grand Prix presented by Hamilton Princess delivered a successfully executed bubble environment for 64 elite athletes as well as separate bubbles for support team members.
The approach was developed with leading experts and medical professionals and working with other major elite sports events which are operating safely during the global pandemic.
Bubble environments, which require daily health reports and regular testing, are designed to reduce the risk of COVID transmission. The SailGP Bubble was adapted for Bermuda in consultation with the Bermuda Ministry of Health, Ministry of National Security, Ministry of Youth, Culture and Sport, and the BTA.
Bermuda Football Association (BFA)
BFA President, Mark Wade said: “The national team looks forward to building on their positive result against Aruba in the upcoming matches against Suriname and Cayman Islands next month. Being able to establish our training bubble at the Hamilton Princess is an enormous boost for our preparations.
“We are delighted to be presented with this opportunity which will help reduce the risk of virus exposure while creating a training environment that keeps the team members together. The collaboration between SailGP, the BTA and Hamilton Princess is a demonstration of what can be achieved when the community works together to benefit football.”
Ministry Of Youth, Culture And Sport
Acting Minister of Youth, Culture and Sport Tinée Furbert added: “It has been a challenging year for us all, yet when Bermuda gathered virtually to support our National Team face off against Canada and Aruba, we were reminded of the power of sports to inspire national unity.
“That’s why we applaud the National Team bubble contribution, realised through the generosity of SailGP, Hamilton Princess and the Bermuda Tourism Authority. In addition, Bermuda Sail Grand Prix has demonstrated its community values through its work with our local sailing clubs and the Inspire Bermuda youth sailing programme. And this initiative serves to further showcase the value of engaging community-centred international partners in Bermuda.”
SailGP CEO Sir Russell Coutts said: “We owe a huge thanks to the people of Bermuda. These are challenging times, and it is through everyone’s support, and that of our partners, that we managed to put on such a spectacular show in a safe way.
“So, when we learned that Bermuda’s National Team was preparing for two key CONCACAF matches, we reached out to our local partners to help support their efforts and knowledge share. We are delighted that we have been able to contribute to Bermuda in this way and wish the team the very best of luck.”
Hamilton Princess, General Manager, Tim Morrison, said: “Our partnership with SailGP as title sponsor has been tremendously rewarding. The organisation has demonstrated a phenomenal commitment to Bermuda through its work in the community, including its climate-positive initiatives and Inspire Program.
We are delighted to again partner with them to support our national team’s Concacaf journey. We understand that sports can be a formidable force for national unity and are proud to host Bermuda’s footballers as they prepare to represent us on the world stage.”
Bermuda Tourism Authority (BTA)
Bermuda Tourism Authority, CEO Charles H Jeffers II said: “It’s beautiful to see the power of our partnerships in action, particularly when the impact goes beyond core economic metrics. During the pandemic, bubbled Sports Tourism has emerged as a reliable segment of our tourism economy, even as traditional segments have softened.
“Bermuda Sail Grand Prix presented by Hamilton Princess was a spectacular win for Bermuda’s tourism industry in a number of ways: global visibility, demonstration of Bermuda’s world-class infrastructure, economic impact and community support. In addition, this initiative will support Bermuda’s national football team and reveals another layer of value and community engagement that has materialised through our partnership.”
Team In Bubble
The Bermuda National team will remain in a bubble at the Hamilton Princess until the mixing-of-households’ restrictions are lifted. The National Team will play two remaining first-round fixtures against Suriname and the Caymans Islands on June 4 and 8, 2021. The BFA will announce broadcast viewing options that may be available for Bermuda audiences.