- Title: DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: CLOSING CEREMONY OF THE PAN AMERICAN GAMES
- Date: 17th August 2003
- Summary: SANTO DOMINGO, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC (AUGUST 17, 2003) (REUTERS) POSTER FOR THE XIV PAN AMERICAN GAMES SOLDIER GUARDING THE AREA VARIOUS OF PEOPLE ENTERING THE STADIUM FOR THE CLOSING CEREMONIES MAN WITH POSTER: "ATHLETES FROM EVERYWHERE: AFTER CHRIST, YOU ARE THE HOPE FOR PEACE. ONLY SPORTS GENERATES MASSES OF FRIENDSHIP. IT UNITES PEOPLE, PEOPLE OF THE WORLD." PEOPLE ARRIVING AT THE STADIUM FOR THE CLOSING CEREMONIES (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) DOMINICAN CITIZEN JOSE GOMEZ SAYING: "Hundreds of Dominicans are against [the government]. We are not in agreement [with government policies] because the economy is not good." VARIOUS OF PEOPLE FORMING A LINE TO GET INTO THE CLOSING CEREMONIES (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) JOSE JOAQUIN PUELLO, PRESIDENT OF THE ORGANISING COMMITTEE OF THE GAMES, SAYING: "I would categorise these Games as excellent Games because you cannot judge the Games from the point of view of emotion, you cannot judge them based on what happened in the first days [referring to logistical problems]. In the end, the Games should be evaluated based on the sports - that is what is important."
- Embargoed: 1st September 2003 13:00
- Location: SANTO DOMINGO, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
- Country: Dominican Republic
- Topics: General,Sports
- Reuters ID: LVA1ZZ2Q205UX5HTXWPIQLEHIYLV
- Story Text: After a shaky start, the XIV Pan American Games officially ended in Santo Domingo with a boisterous Ceremony of singing and dancing.
Thousands of athletes and fans turned out on Sunday (August 17) night in Santo Domingo to bid farewell to the XIV Pan American Games.
"I solemnly declare these 2003 Santo Domingo Pan American Games over," stated the President of the Pan American Sports Organisation, Mario Vazquez Rana, at the closing ceremony in the Juan Pablo Duarte Olympic Complex.
The final event was a boisterous one that included singing and dancing - demonstrations of merengue from the Dominicans and samba from the Brazilians - as well as the unfurling of an enormous map of Rio de Janeiro, which will host the Games in 2007.
The Games, which faced a series of logistical obstacles in the first few days, recorded five cases of drug use that affected two gold medalists, one silver and bronze medalist and two athletes who did not win anything.
"I would categorise these Games as excellent Games because you cannot judge the Games from the point of view of emotion, you cannot judge them based on what happened in the first days [referring to logistical problems]. In the end, the Games should be evaluated based on the sports - that is what is important," said Jose Joaquin Puello, President of the Organising Committee of the Games.
The U.S. led the medal count with 272 medals - 116 gold, 80 silver and 76 bronze - followed by Cuba, Canada and Brazil. Venezuela and the Dominican Republic were the Games' surprises, performing better than they had in previous Games.
Forty-two countries and over 5,000 athletes participated in the Games, which began on August 1.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2015. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None