Cycling: National body commits to building on success

BikeNZ boss Kieran Turner is resigned to making cuts but insists his organisation is committed to building on its success over the last four years.

Cycling is regarded as a 'tier one' sport, alongside yachting and rowing, but will receive only a modest increase of $300,000, from $15.3 million to $15.6 million over the next four years, High Performance Sport New Zealand announced today.

The organisation hoped for more funding for its Olympic programme based on its growth across several disciplines.

"We've run through various scenarios but we still have to sit down with HPSNZ in the New Year and work through some of those," Turner said.

"We've got a large depth of young talent coming through and we'll want to see how those riders are tracking in 2014, whether we have the ability to put some further funding support around them if they look like medal potential as well... there's a few unknowns."

Turner said that the growth of BikeNZ's high performance programme, rising costs and the increased outlay for the Olympic qualification process equated to a significantly greater spend than what they will receive from HPSNZ.

"We will look closely at the numbers and make some hard decisions around our overall structure, which programmes we are able to commit to and the priorities in terms of the level of support.

"In some ways we are victims of our growth and the investment we have made. In the last four years BikeNZ has won 16 elite world championship medals on the track alone. We have seven riders or teams currently in the top five in the world across three different codes, and a further five in the top 16 who are benchmarking strongly against Olympic medallist at the same stage.

"Clearly under the current funding levels we will need to prioritise our investment because we won't have the resource to deliver across all these riders and teams."

He said the focus for next year was the shift to a centralised base in Cambridge. He added that he hoped to cash in on sponsors to help make up the funding shortfall.


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