RP contingent to Rio departs July 23
by rick olivares
The bulk of the Philippine contingent to the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics will be departing on Saturday, July 23. “We want to leave a week early so everyone can acclimatize to Rio’s time zone with plenty of time to spare,” bared the Philippine Olympic Committee’s Chef de Mission, Jose Romasanta Jr. during the athletes’ briefing last Monday, July 18.
The Philippines is 11 hours ahead of Brazil.
The Filipinos will be flying out of Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3 aboard Emirates bound for Dubai right before midnight of July 23. “It’s a long flight,” pointed out the team’s Physio-therapist Dr. Ferdinand Brawner, “eight hours outbound to Dubai, a four hour lay-over, then another 13-14 flight to Rio. The plan is as much as possible to sleep based on the time in Rio and to do some simple stretching exercises aboard the flight.”
The RP contingent - 12 athletes, 10 coaches, 6 officials, and 1 caddy — is expected to arrive in Rio on Sunday, July 24, at 2:30pm where they will be bused towards the Olympic Village in Barra da Tijuca in Rio De Janeiro where they will register and claim their official documents and tags for the Summer Games.
Aside from Romasanta and Dr. Brawner, other team officials attending include POC President Jose Conjuangco Jr. and former Philippine Air Force Colonel Jeff Tamayo who is in charge of security.
“We’ve instructed all members of the mission to wear the Philippine jacket at all times for easy identification,” said Tamayo. “From NAIA all the way to our eventual return after the Olympics.”
The opening ceremony of the Olympic Games Rio De Janeiro is on the evening of Friday, August 5, with competitions slated to begin the next morning.