THE Bahamas is “well on track” to generate more than $13 million, and over 20,000 room nights this year, from sports tourism.
#A senior Ministry of Tourism executive yesterday told Tribune Business there were a wide array of sporting events lined up to help position this nation as a premiere sports tourism destination in the region, including a soccer match between top English Premier League side, Tottenham Hotspur, and the Jamaican national team.
#Tyrone Sawyer, director of sports tourism, said the Pink Silk-Bahamas LPGA golf tournament, set to be held at the One & Only Ocean Club Golf Course during the US Memorial Day holiday weekend, May 23-26, as the “mother load” in terms of sports tourism events.
#The event is set to attract 144 female golfers from around the world, and will be featured on the Golf Channel to an audience of 247 million. It is expected to generate well over 4,000 room nights.
#“There are quite a few events lined up for the rest of the year,” Mr Sawyer said. “There are quite a few events lined up. There will be some announcements made in the next few days. The golf tournament is almost the mother load in terms of sports tourism because you are attracting the LPGA and getting the best 144 women players in the world.
#“The whole idea is not only to have the publicity generated by the Golf Channel to the 171 countries and 240 million viewers, but to get people to come to see their friends or favourite players participate.”
#He added: “Starting the year we anticipated that we would generate over $13 million in tourism revenue from our sports tourism events, and over 20,000 room nights. We are well on track to exceed those goals that we set for ourselves starting out, and that’s pretty good.
#“You are going to hear about soccer events like Tottenham Hotspur versus the Jamaican national to be held at the new stadium; that was just announced Monday. That’s high level soccer event, the Barclays Premier League, it doesn’t get higher than that.
#“We have a full array of sports events that are being developed to better position us as the destination for sports tourism that bring along the spend and the room nights, as well the other components.”