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British track facing funding drop

British track facing funding drop

A disappointing Olympics for British track and field athletes could cost it some funding in the buildup to London 2012.
"I think it's clear that athletics themselves would agree that they haven't yet delivered in the same way that our most successful sports have like sailing, rowing and cycling," Liz Nicholl, the director of elite sport for UK Sport, said Friday. "They know that they're on a journey and there's a long way to go."
One of the possible changes is that British track and field "could be a smaller team" at the 2012 Games.
"They know they have to create a better environment for athletes and better level of influence and support for personal coaches. You have to be prepared to make some very tough decisions about which athletes you fund," Nicholl said, pointing to the cycling program as an example.
British track and field athletes have one gold to show for four medals. UK Sport expects athletics to look to the sailing, rowing, canoe and cycling programs for inspiration after those disciplines won 15 of Britain's 18 gold medals as of Friday.
UK Sport will begin performance reviews of these games soon after Sunday's closing ceremony and chief executive John Steele said "all sports will be treated in the same way on a no compromise basis."
"We won't make a special case out of any sport. We want to see evidence of development and success and wouldn't make any exceptions," Steele told reporters.
UK Sport is targeting more medals at the home games, but Steele declined to predict whether it could match Beijing, which is Britain's best medal-placing since the 1920 Olympics at Antwerp, Belgium.
"We'll only get one shot for the home games. We should be looking at increasing the number of medals," Steele said on Friday. "Britain will review its ambitions at the London Games and build on the unprecedented success in Beijing."
UK Sport is budgeting 600 million pounds (


Updated : 2021-01-21 21:01 GMT+08:00