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HomeNewsArchivesLOCAL FENCERS OFF TO P.R. OLYMPIC FESTIVAL

LOCAL FENCERS OFF TO P.R. OLYMPIC FESTIVAL

Six members of the Blades Fencing Club and the St. John Fencing Club leave St. Thomas Wednesday for two days of "friendly" competition in an Olympic Festival event being hosted by the Puerto Rico Olympic Committee.
The multi-sport festival takes place Thursday and Friday in Guaynabo. Representing the U.S. Virgin Islands in fencing will be Sanna Said, Sandy Said, Johan Brookes, Jared Etsinger, Mark Hansen and Dan Depuy. The Said sisters, Brookes and Etsinger are all teenage students but have been accepted for participation.
The Puerto Ricans are holding the festival as "a warm-up" for the quadrennial Pan American Games that Canada will host July 23-Aug. 8 in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
"It's not a qualifying event for international competition," Blades president and coach Joyce Bolanos said of the festival. "But it's an excellent opportunity for our members to get experience and exposure against other fencers in the region."
Fencers from Aruba, Cuba, Mexico, Panama, Puerto Rico, Venezuela and South
Africa will also take part. Competition will be in all three fencing weapons — foil, epee and saber. The Virgin Islanders will fence in the men's and women's foil categories.
"Support from the V.I. Olympic Committee and American Airlines made it possible for us to represent the territory in this event," Bolanos said.
The festival immediately follows the week long Central American and Caribbean Fencing Championships that conclude today (Wednesday) in nearby Aguadilla. It is anticipated that many fencers who traveled to Puerto Rico for the CAC competition will stay on to take part in the festival.

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