Kyron McMaster at Gold Coast 2018 wrap up press conference
Kyron McMaster, the 400m hurdles champion and inaugural British Virgin Islands (VI) gold medalist sat on the head table with top executives of the Commonwealth Games Federation, GOLDOC, and Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games at the final day press conference of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.
The line up included Andy Street, Mayor, West Midlands; Kyron McMaster, Gold Medalist 400m Hurdles; Mark Peters, CEO, Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Corporation; Peter Beattie AC, Chairman, Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Corporation; David Grevemberg CBE, CEO, Commonwealth Games Federation; and Louise Martin CBE, President, Commonwealth Games Federation.
The focus of the first half of the two-part conference was the wrap up of the Games and reflections of the event.
Speaking on two memorable events in what is being dubbed ‘Game of Firsts’, Ms. Martin said, “Forty-three countries have won medals. Five of these are first ever medals and they're all small countries which, to me, is exceptional.”
Identifying the win of the first medal for the VI as one of the memorable moments of the Games, Kyron was asked to share his experience on winning and on the public’s reaction to it.
"Winning the first medal for the British Virgin Islands was big,” said Kyron. “Before the race, everyone was messaging me crazily saying, 'no pressure, but we want the medal'.”
“Winning it after what we have been through (Hurricane Irma), I was happy that I could deliver on that and especially the gold medal. Everyone was just so happy and so I was happy to bring some joy back to the BVI."
A lot of the stories behind the athletes at the Games have been about triumph through adversity and Kyron explained what winning the medal has meant to him given the impact of Hurricane Irma.
“It gives athletes hope when they see me go out there and do it. Not only for the athletes back home but also those from other small countries who haven’t medaled yet, who can say ‘if this small-town boy can do it, we can do it’,” said Kyron. “For the athletes back home, I know that they are looking at it as motivation regardless of the standards of their training. They can use it and can progress.”
Kyron looks forward to competing at Doha 2018, Qatar on May 4 in one of the series of fourteen of the ninth edition of the annual IAAF Diamond League. It will be one of the biggest Diamond Leagues he has attended.