Kent elite athletes discover how much funding their sports will receive from UK Sport
Kent sport stars have endured mixed fortunes after the
announcement of UK Sport's funding for the run-up to the Rio 2016
Olympic and Paralympic Games.
In all 42 summer Olympic and Paralympic sports which are deemed
to have 'credible' medal potential at the next two Games will
receive some of a record £347m of funding.
The cash is designed to help beat the GB medal hauls from London
2012 - TeamGB won 65 medals at the Olympics while Paralympics GB
recorded 120 later in the summer.
Many of the county's elite athletes could benefit from an
increase in funding after their sports enjoyed success in 2012,
however several more will miss out entirely.
After winning just one game between them at London2012, the GB
sitting volleyball teams have seen all funding cut.
The women's captain, Claire Harvey from Ashford, said on
twitter: "The funding decision is zero for sitting volleyball.
Where's the legacy?"
"We are truly gutted, not just as athletes but for those young
people behind us who have lost a pathway to aspire to.
"A true athlete is the person who can pick themselves up
and find a way through when it all seems impossible. That's what we
will do now."
Beckenham's Richard Dobell and Folkestone-based Gurkha Netra
Rana represented the men's side and Dobell tweeted: "The rest of
the world excel, invest and unite in team sports. Good old GB holds
true to its institutional blinkered approach. It's sad."
Paralympic table tennis stars Will Bayley, from Tunbridge Wells,
and Ross Wilson, from Sheppey, have however been given a boost.
Bayley won a silver in the singles and bronze with Wilson in the
team event at London 2012 and have seen funding increased from
£1.64m to £2.7m. That comes despite funding for Olympic table
tennis being removed altogether.
Bayley said: "2013 is when I get back to No1 in the world and
train even more than I did in 2012. I am hungry to be the best
Despite missing out on a medal in the Paralympics, GB's
wheelchair rugby team, skippered by Sittingbourne's Steve Brown,
are deemed a medal chance for Rio and have seen funding increased
from £2.2m to more than £3m.
UK Sport increased funding for Paralympic sport overall by 43%
British Gymnastics - which supports Medway's Olympic trampoline
star Kat Driscoll - has seen a rise in funding of almost £4m up to
£14.5m after a successful summer while athletics will receive
nearly £27m, up by £1.6m, which will benefit the likes of New
Romney's Lisa Dobriskey, Dartford's Adam Gemili and Jack Green from
Hockey will receive £15.5m, up by £500,000, which could go
towards supporting West Malling ace Ashley Jackson, while
Canterbury stars Nat Seymour, Susannah Townsend, Dilly Newton and
Ross Gilham-Jones are all hoping to push for places in the GB squad
for the next Games.
Rowing funding has increased by more than £5m to £32.6m, with
Ashford's Tom Ransley, a bronze medal winner in the men's eight at
London 2012, and his former training partner Dan Ritchie from Herne
Bay, who missed the Games through injury, in line to benefit.
Handball, wrestling and basketball have seen all their cash
removed while West Wickham water polo star Sean King saw funding
for his sport cut, causing him to say: "I guess that means GB will
no longer be represented at international level."
Swimming officials are set to provide a low level of funding to
men's water polo in lieu of the UK sport cash.
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