Rio de Janeiro under the spotlight with only 67 days before the start of the 2016 Games
There are 67 days left to the Olympic and Games in Rio.
But recent stories focus on problems associated with the host city, Rio de Janeiro.
One Canadian Olympic official says once the spotlight is on the Games, the bad news will be forgotten.
It may be one of the most beautiful venues for an Olympics, but controversies centering on the host city are not going away.
Last week, 150 health experts issued an open letter to the United Nations Health Agency, insisting the Games be delayed, or relocated, because cases of the Zika virus are increasing in Rio de Janeiro.
But the World Health Organization’s Dr. Bruce Alyward says the Games should go ahead.
“Based on a very careful risk assessment and all the information we have gathered so far about this disease, these Games should go ahead as planned and we should continue to work to make sure they are as safe as
There is the sewage flowing into the bay where events such as rowing and sailing will take place.
And Brazil has highest murder rate in the world, with the crime rate increasing in the poorest areas of Rio de Janeiro.
“Every one of your athletes should know about this.”
Instructing a course on drug-free sports to a room full of coaches from around the world at the Pacific Institute for Sports Excellence, Peter Lawless is an Olympic veteran.
Both as a coach and director of the Canadian Olympic Committee.
“There are no good news stories until the Games begin.
As of the opening ceremony, that’s when the Games start.”
Lawless says negative stories are routine before the start of the Olympics, just 67 days away.
And the COC’s focus now is the safety of athletes.
“Our primary concern, of course, as the committee, is the safety of our athletes.
Athlete safety is job one.
And we’ve got to take care of that before we can allow them the freedom to play as they need to on the field of play.”
An estimated fifty island-based athletes are heading to Rio, including mountain biker Catherine Pendrel and the women’s rugby seven team.
With less than two and a half months before the Opening Ceremony, their focus now, is the performance not the controversies.