Juvenile Triathletes of Liberia Train in the Negro River Because of a Rise in Rentals of the UCR Pools

    Fee Increased from ¢ 4 Thousand to ¢ 24 Thousand per Month for Each Athlete

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    The Liberia triathlon team must train in rivers as it prepares to play at the end of the month the qualifiers for the National Sports Games, after the University of Costa Rica (UCR) increased the amount of pools’ rental.

    The Cantonal Committee of Sports and Recreation (CCDR) of Liberia received, on February 27th, a letter from the Sports Facilities Commission of the university center, which mentioned that it had decided to raise the fee paid by every athlete of ¢ 4 thousand per month to ¢ 24 thousand for the new 6-month contract.

    “For us it is totally surprising because when we met with them the idea was to keep the conditions in the same way they had been, but we went from paying almost ¢ 70 thousand a month to almost ¢ 500 thousand, and it is a sum that the Committee does not have the capacity to face it”, said the president of the CCDR, Eddy Álvarez.

    The contract change is due to the expiration of the one they had previously and that was for 6 months. The managing director of the Committee, Carolina Obando, explained that they have not yet been given the reason for the increase. Currently, there are 20 triathletes that make up the Liberian team and their coach is Magdalena Chacón; hers was the idea of ​​going to rivers to continue with the preparation to not have a place to do it now.

    “When Leo (Chacón, Olympian ex-athlete) and I were small, we trained many times in those places, so when I did not have a place to train, I proposed to the boys and the parents to go there and they accepted; that is their willing spirit to continue in the sport “, explained Chacón, who added that for the moment they can go to the river to be in summer time.

    On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays they move to the Negro River, about 5 kilometers from Liberia, to carry out their training. Some of them are mobilized in the coach’s car. Parents also collaborate by taking other young people, and some others even arrive by bicycle.

    “The river looks very nice but it is very uncomfortable, dangerous and difficult to get in. Some parents have to stay watching the vehicles because they can steal, while others help take care of the children in the river,” said Gladys Centeno, mother of one of the young people affected. Meanwhile, on weekends, they are choosing to train Coco or other nearby beaches.

    Other options

    The CCDR of Liberia affirms that they requested a hearing with the members of the UCR to analyze the subject, although they still have not received a response. In the meantime, they shuffle with hotels in the area the possibility of lending or renting the pools, without affecting the visitation they have.

    “We have partnerships with hotels in the area and we have started conversations“, said Obando. It was tried to know the version on the part of the UCR by means of the press office. Nevertheless, at the time of the publication still had not been had any answer.

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