The team at Aloyd Fitness in British Columbia is shaking out its legs, taking a few last deep breaths and getting ready to toe the starting line for its own Olympic feat: Getting dozens and dozens of pieces of equipment and other accessories delivered, transported, and setup for the 2010 Winter Games at venues scattered across the region.
“Everybody’s pumped up,” Lloyd Richards, who founded his own retail business 25 years ago (www.aloyd.com), told SNEWS®. “We feel privileged. Hopefully it’s our reputation that got us the deal.”
Getting the contract, however, was just the first step. Since Olympic venues are by nature transitory, most construction and setup happens relatively last minute. That means Richards and his team just found out Dec. 16 that he had the contract. Now the real work begins, and it’ll be a sprint to the finish. All the equipment from his suppliers will be in by Jan. 8, and the Canadian company – led by commercial manager Dave Johnson and commercial service manager Jay Yeh – must be done and flicking off a few remaining specks of dust by Jan. 16.
“The companies we deal with have been amazing,” Richards said, pointing to his four equipment suppliers Octane, Paramount, Body-Solid and SportsArt. “We’re all scrambling.”
The Games run Feb. 12-28, 2010, but the centers must be done a month early to allow for security checks, then use by early arrivals such as media, security staff and athletes. Even his four-man installation team must be put through rigorous security checks to be allowed in the venues, he said.
With such high security, Richards found he could not reveal the bid amount or the venue locations. But go to the official Olympics website, www.vancouver2010.com, and you’ll find nine competition venues, two Olympic villages and several non-competition venues such as media centers, many of which he will supply with their own fitness centers. Most athlete areas will have full workout centers, which Richards said he will equip with the equipment as well as his own line of accessories such as medicine balls, mats and tubing. The farthest from Vancouver is Whistler Ski Resort, which is two and a half hours away.
“It’s so much work,” he admitted. The payoff will be the ability to sell the equipment after only six weeks of use to area clubs, who are already lining up for good deals.
“Our biggest concern is if it snows,” Richards said. “A lot of things can happen but we’ll do our best. We’ll get it done.”