High Performance Sport New Zealand (HPSNZ) has today announced its investments to sports over the next four-year funding cycle, as it eyes more medal success for New Zealand.
HPSNZ Chief Executive Alex Baumann says 2012 has been an exceptional year for New Zealand sport, with Kiwi athletes winning 13 medals at the London Olympics, 17 medals at the Paralympic Games, while many other Kiwi athletes and teams won on the world stage.
``These results set a new benchmark. We’re announcing today how we will target our resources to support sports to the podium at targeted world championships, the Winter Olympic and Winter Paralympic Games, and the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016 and beyond.
``We’re targeting one or more medals at the Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, two or more gold medals at the Paralympic Winter Games, 14 or more medals at the Rio Olympics, and 8-12 gold medals at the Rio Paralympic Games, and we’re investing in the sports we believe can deliver them.’’
In September, HPSNZ released its strategy for 2013-2020 which outlined its investment and support priorities as:
``Today’s announcements mean we will be supporting the high performance programmes of national sport organisations with $31 million a year over each of the next four years, in line with our strategic priorities,’’ Baumann says.
In addition to that, government investment of more than $15m a year will go directly to athletes via three main support programmes. These include Performance Enhancement Grants (PEGs), Prime Minister’s Sport Scholarships, and performance support in specialist areas like injury and illness prevention and rehabilitation, strength and conditioning, sports science, performance planning, nutrition, and athlete advice.
Baumann says 12 targeted sports and teams including Paralympics New Zealand and the Winter high performance programme run by Snow Sports New Zealand will get investment to support them to world championship, Olympic and Paralympic success.
As well, HPSNZ will provide campaign investment to support athletes or teams in 15 other sports.
``Sports such as Bike, Rowing and Yachting will continue to be well supported by HPSNZ. We have also significantly increased our investment in Equestrian Eventing, Canoe Racing and the Black Sticks women’s hockey programme, because we believe they can deliver podium results in 2016. Rugby 7s will be on the Olympic programme in Rio and we’re delighted to support both the men’s and women’s teams in their campaigns to win medals for New Zealand.
``We are supporting netball, as it eyes Commonwealth Games and world championship success, and we are also pleased to help other non-Olympic sports such as rugby league achieve their dream of retaining the Rugby League World Cup in 2013.’’
Baumann says as expected the investment round was well over-subscribed, so not all sports which applied for investment have been supported, and some haven’t received the support they hoped for.
``New Zealand doesn’t have the resources that other larger nations have, but we are confident that by continuing the targeted investment approach that’s been in place since 2006, we can continue to deliver the results New Zealanders want to see.
``New Zealand’s next medal and world championship winners will come from the sports we are investing in today.
``Thanks to the Government’s recent increases in high performance investment, we‘re in the exciting and privileged position of being able to support them to do that.’’
HPSNZ is a one stop shop for athletes which means investment and the delivery of performance support can be considered collectively.
To maximise the impact of the strategic investment announced today, three athlete performance programmes – athlete carding, PEGs, and Prime Minister’s Sport Scholarships – are being aligned to HPSNZ’s strategy. That will see athletes from sports which receive targeted and/or campaign investment prioritised for support.
Baumann says there will be an increase in some levels of PEGs payments to athletes. An independent review of the PEGs programme, which provides world-class athletes and teams with direct financial support to enable them to train and compete full-time, recommended that the upper levels paid to Olympic individual medalists and teams stay the same but that lower level PEGs be increased.
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