Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 28th 2015 Contents A55
Tuesday, April 28, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
LAS VEGAS---Manny Pacquiao and Floyd
Mayweather hadn t even decided how
much it would cost home viewers to watch
their fight when the head of the Nevada
Athletic Commission started planning
security for their big bout.
Five times in the 10 weeks since the two
welterweights set a date for their long-
awaited fight, commission chief Francisco
Aguilar has convened state, federal and local
police, fire, tourism and fight officials for
one thing: to keep hundreds of thousands
of people outside the ring safe.
Boxing, particularly in big matches like
this one, poses a special challenge to Las
"We re not preparing for a fight night.
We re preparing for a fight week," Deputy
Las Vegas Police Chief Gary Schofield said,
pointing to a series of events, including Fri-
day s weigh-in at the MGM Grand hotel.
As a security and crowd-control measure,
advance tickets ($10 face value) will be
required for the first time.
He described a security plan of concentric
The Athletic Commission handles security
inside the ring. The hotel and police have
responsibility for the arena and hotel, which
is Las Vegas biggest, with 5,005 rooms.
Police, along with state and federal agen-
cies, are in charge outside---"all the way out
to the airport, Interstate 15 and the neigh-
borhoods," Schofield said.
"The overall goal is to maintain the
integrity of the event," Aguilar said. "Las
Vegas is a brand. To protect the brand, you
have to protect the event."
Fight nights haven t always gone so
In 1993, "Fan Man" James Miller guided
his powered parachute to land next to a
Caesars Palace outdoor ring where Evander
Holyfield and Riddick Bowe were brawling.
Ringside fans and security pummeled Miller,
who was arrested for the stunt.
In 1996, rapper Tupac Shakur was killed
in a drive-by shooting after Mike Tyson
knocked out Bruce Seldon at the MGM.
In 1997, bedlam erupted inside and outside
the ring when Tyson was disqualified for
biting Evander Holyfield s ears. Thousands
of people stampeded through the MGM
Grand hotel lobby.
Last year, a scuffle in the elbow-to-elbow
crowd leaving a Mayweather-Marcos Maid-
ana fight---and a loud noise that officials
blame on a partition falling to the floor, not
a gunshot---spurred a panicked stampede
in a food court area outside the arena. Offi-
cials said about 50 people were treated for
"We ve had times when it doesn t quite
go according to plan," Schofield acknowl-
edged. "We ve learned."
Officials won t say much about the details
of how they ll protect the scene and the
army of celebrities in town.
But Deputy Clark County Fire Chief Erik
Newman said that just about all 650 fire-
fighters in his department will be on duty
"I think we ll have the most millionaires
and billionaires in one place in the country,"
The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors
Authority reported last week that virtually
all 150,000 hotel rooms in the city were
sold for fight weekend.
Las Vegas police have almost 2,500 sworn
officers. They ll get help this week from
the Nevada Highway Patrol, neighboring
Henderson and North Las Vegas police,
and federal agencies ranging from the FBI
to the Department of Homeland Security.
"We re a community that knows how to
handle large events," Schofield said. "We
do them a lot."
Indeed, Las Vegas draws 340,000 people
for its annual New Year s Eve fireworks
party on the Strip, 200,000 to a weekend-
long Electric Daisy Carnival and almost
120,000 for a NASCAR race.
Tim Jeffery, vice president of security
for the MGM Grand Hotel & Casino, said
fight fans and tourists will notice lots of
security officers in bright yellow-green
shirts on pedestals, but won t see behind-
Ticket-holders won t be able to bring
bags or backpacks and will pass through
metal-detectors, Nevada Athletic Com-
mission Executive Director Bob Bennett
"There will be a lot of people outside,"
Bennett said. "The access to alcohol and
partying around town could create some
NEW DELHI---India is not
ready to bid for the 2024
Olympics but could be a can-
didate to host the games in the
future, IOC President Thomas
Bach said yesterday.
"Frankly, we were a little bit
surprised about this speculation
(of a potential Indian bid)," Bach
said at a news conference after
a meeting with Indian Prime
Minister Narendra Modi.
"Because of different reasons
we think it will be a little too
quick for India to have successful
Olympics in 2024."
There had been reports in the
Indian media recently about a
possible 2024 bid from New
Delhi or even Ahmedabad, the
biggest city in Modi s home state
Bach said Modi did seem
eager to bid but understood that
India, the world s second most
populous nation, was not pre-
"We were happy to see that
the PM was sharing this feel-
ing---that he is seriously looking
at the Olympic candidature."
Bach said. "However, he wants
to be well prepared and have all
the expertise. It was an opinion
shared by us."
The prospect of a successful
Indian bid for 2024 seemed
remote after New Delhi s organ-
ization of the 2010 Common-
wealth Games came under
severe criticism at home and
abroad over constructions delays
and corruption scandals.
Rome, Boston and Hamburg,
Germany, are the declared can-
didates so far for 2024. Paris is
also expected to join the race,
among other cities.
The deadline for declaration
of bids to the International
Olympic Committee is Septem-
ber 15. The host city will be
selected by the IOC in 2017.
While a 2024 bid has been
ruled out, Bach said India could
be in the running in the future.
"He (Modi) considers building
a successful candidature from
now till September will be a lit-
tle difficult but we will stay in
contact for the future," Bach
The IOC leader said the
immediate focus would be on
helping India improve in sport.
"India is a sleeping giant and
we will try to wake it up," he
said. "With 1.2 billion people
and 80 million of them young,
it has a lot of potential."
India has only recently started
winning medals at the
Olympics. It won six medals
coming at the 2012 London
Olympics but no golds.
Rifle-shooter Abhinav Bindra,
who won gold in Beijing in
2008, remains India s only indi-
vidual gold medal winner. The
last of India s eight Olympic
gold medals in field hockey
came 35 years ago in Moscow.
Bach said the IOC had signed
an agreement with the Indian
Olympic Association and the
Indian government on Monday
to help improve Indian sports.
....IOC promises help for
Nepal after earthquake
Bach says the Olympic body
will do everything possible to
help sports in Nepal recover
from the devastating earthquake
in the Himalayan kingdom.
Bach says the International
Olympic Committee has "full
sympathy" for Nepal, where
more than 4,000 people died
after the earthquake hit Satur-
Bach says the IOC will help
assist Nepal "to build infrastruc-
ture" and "help revive the
Olympic movement" after wide-
spread damage across the coun-
LAUSANNE---The International Equestrian Fed-
eration could cut team sizes at the Olympics to
create space for more competing countries.
The FEI will also consider relaxing rider dress
codes and using more music in dressage to help
attract broadcasters and non-expert viewers.
Ideas to modernise equestrian were aired yes-
terday at an FEI forum discussing Olympic reforms
promoted by IOC President Thomas Bach.
"We need to get a product that is easier to sell
on television," FEI President Ingmar de Vos said.
Bach has promoted the "Olympic Agenda 2020"
program to make the games easier and cheaper
to host and more attractive to young audiences.
Olympic sports have been challenged to mod-
ernise events while keeping their traditional appeal.
De Vos said having more competing countries
within an IOC-imposed quota of 200 riders is
key to wider television coverage.
"I believe our challenge is to increase the number
of flags, to make the competition format more
interesting and easier to understand for a wider
audience," said the Belgian official, who was elected
At the 2012 London Olympics, 40 nations com-
peted in equestrian s six gold medal events: indi-
vidual and team competitions in dressage, eventing
After European teams and riders won 16 of the
18 medals in London, the IOC and FEI also want
to create more chances for other regions.
One proposal to diversify the lineup is limiting
teams to three rider-and-horse pairings. That
would also mean changing the scoring system to
make all riders count toward the final score and
eliminate so-called "drop scores" of those col-
lecting the most penalty points. Currently, team
eventing counts only the best three scores from
five pairings, and team jumping counts three from
"Removing a drop score could bring a lot of
additional excitement and drama," De Vos told
the meeting, acknowledging concern that teams
can overcome major errors to win gold. "It is dif-
ficult to understand how (at the Olympics) there
can be a second chance."
The FEI also proposes changing a system that
currently allows some qualifying-round perform-
ances to count toward individual and team medal
De Vos suggested more easily understood scoring
in the future with Olympic medals decided in a
single 90-minute televised session. Possible
changes discussed at a two-day forum in Lausanne
could be voted on in Puerto Rico in November.
Changes to the 2020 Tokyo Games event should
be decided by the IOC at next year s Olympics
in Rio de Janeiro. (AP)
MONTREAL---The World Anti-Doping Agency
has set up an online site for whistleblowers to
report information about doping in Russia.
WADA set up a three-person independent com-
mission in December to investigate allegations
made in a German television documentary of
widespread doping and cover-ups in Russia, par-
ticularly in track and field.
WADA says on its web site that is "encouraging
you to contact us, in confidence, to share infor-
mation related to the allegations or any other
doping suspicions or concerns."
The agency attached a secure online form for
users to send in their information. The notice is
also included in Russian.
The WADA commission, headed by former
president Dick Pound, is scheduled to deliver its
findings by the end of the year. (AP)
Vegas sets up 'concentric'
security for megafight
Bach: India not ready to bid for 2024 Olympics
International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach,
addresses journalists at a press conference in New Delhi, India,
yesterday. Bach has dismissed speculation that India was planning
to bid for the 2024 Olympic Games but said that it was a possibility
at a later point in time. AP PHOTO
for more nations
competing at Olympics
WADA seeks whistleblowers'
input on Russian doping
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