The opening ceremony of the Island Games. *Photos by Nicola Muirhead

It’s difficult to say what’s been hotter this week at the Island Games — the competition or the weather?


One thing is certain, island pride is in full display, from flags painted on faces to athletes draped in their country’s colours.

The competition started off with a bang thanks to a spectacular opening ceremony on Saturday evening that included fireworks.

The first events on Sunday morning gave a hint of what was to come — athletes giving it all and doing their very best.

Bermuda’s Nicole Mitchell edged teammate Karen Bordage for gold in the women’s road race and Kerry MacPhee from the Western Isle dominating the women’s triathlon — despite having two cracked ribs.

The weather is also playing a role in these games. Athlete after athlete from colder climes could be seen collapsing at the finish line, with several having to be taken to the hospital.

Even when the races are later in the day, like the women’s 10,000 metres on Monday night, the heat and humidity still took its toll as Sarah Livett from Ynys Mon gamely ran several laps before crumpling to the track after finishing fourth.

It’s been so hot at the gymnastics centre, competitors from other islands have peeled down their unitard to their waists to beat the heat, which didn’t seem to bother the Bermudians who marched to the medal ceremony in full track uniform.

Yes, the humidity has been high, but so has the number of records that have already fallen.

While Bermuda can be proud of Tre Houston’s 10.34 in the men’s 100m, the new pool has seen a re-writing of the Island Games record book. In a day and a half of competition, 11 new entries have been added.

Those of you who have not yet been down to the National Sports Centre are truly missing out on a festival of sport as football, swimming athletics and volleyball are all going on at the same time.

We’ve reached the halfway point for the Bermuda Island Games and there are a lot more stories yet to be written.