OGQ to send their athletes a year in advance to prepare for 2016 Rio Olympics
In order to afford maximum time for athletes in their preparation, Olympic Gold Quest (OGQ), a non-profit organisation, is planning to send the athletes supported by them to Rio, the venue for the 2016 Olympic Games, a year in advance.
Viswanathan Anand (left), L Sarita Devi (second from left), Jitu Rai and Geet Sethi (right) at Bajaj Bhavan, Nariman Point yesterday. Pic/Suresh KK
Pistol shooter Jitu Rai plans to train as well as compete in shooting events at Rio de Janeiro by August this year.
"I will be going to Rio one year before the Olympics… around August 15 or 16, for training-cum-competition. This will help me to get a feel of the Olympic shooting range well in advance," the gold medallist at the last Commonwealth (Glasgow) and Asian Games (Incheon) in the 50m pistol category said during an interaction
Former India hockey skipper Viren Rasquinha, who is also OGQ's CEO, said: "Our decision to send the athletes is not just restricted to one sport. All the athletes supported by OGQ will be sent to Rio as per the calendar and events either for training or competitions this year.
"The duration of stay for the athletes hasn't been worked upon, but we will do that soon. It was our decision to ensure that the athletes get the best possible facilities."
Suspended woman boxer L Sarita Devi thanked OGQ for helping her recover from a wrist injury sustained last year at the Commonwealth Games in Scotland. She is serving a one-year ban imposed by AIBA for rejecting her bronze medal at the Incheon Asian Games medal ceremony last year.
Sarita aims for gold
"I underwent surgery at the Lilavati hospital (on November 14) and have recovered now. I will start to train for the Rio Games and my entire focus is to win the gold medal and prove myself," said the Manipuri.
Sarita Devi and Rai also had an interaction on the mental aspects of sport with nine-time world billiards champion Geet Sethi and five-time world chess champion Viswanathan Anand, who are also a part of the OGQ board of directors.