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UK Sport looks beyond Rio 2016 with review into high performance sport

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The UK Sport board is undertaking a review of its performance investment policy to set future direction for high performance sport beyond the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Following an extensive stakeholder and public consultation, the UK Sport Board was asked to consider the findings of study, conducted by research consultancy ComRes, to determine the best way to build on the success of the UK high performance system to date.

The consultation revealed that 86 per cent of sports and partners, and 70 per cent of public respondents endorsed UK Sport to continue to focus on Olympic and Paralympic medal success as a key goal.

Following the report, UK Sport has said it will explore wider impact factors (beyond medals) including participation levels in its measures of success if required to make investment decisions around sports of equal medal potential. The body is also looking to collaborate further across all of the home nation sports councils to better align the high performance system and develop a common investment policy at performance foundation level and to continue to invest in an eight year pathway, with room for a longer period of investment should finances allow.

Since the formation of UK Sport in 1997, Great Britain has risen from 36th spot on the Olympic medal table at the 1996 Games, to third at the 2012 Games held on home soil. It was a similar story for the Winter Olympics, with Great Britain equalling its best ever performance at the Games and delivering its best return in 30 years at the Winter Paralympics, creating 21 medal winners overall.

“UK Sport has proven its ability to deliver Olympic and Paralympic medal success over a period of 18 years, and it is essential that we continue to refine our investment policy to ensure we remain competitive on the world stage and deliver the best possible return on our investment while continuing to build on the system that helps our talented athletes achieve medal success,” said UK Sport CEO Liz Nicholl.

“We will always have to operate within finite resources, but we understand the desire from sports and partners in the sector, as well as the public, for us to be able to extend the impact of our investment into more sports. We will now work to develop a clear, prioritised and costed plan, in line with our Board’s direction, and in collaboration with government, to ensure we are ready to implement our new policy in time for the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic investment cycle.

“While planning for Tokyo 2020, we will continue to provide our very best support to every potential medallist preparing for Rio, giving them the best possible chance to succeed and make the nation proud again next summer.”

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The UK Sport board is undertaking a review of its performance investment policy to set future direction for high performance sport beyond the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
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