UK Sport funding of more than £3m is set to drive forward the delivery World Class performance skating in Great Britain ahead of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.
The National Ice Skating Association (NISA) has been awarded a Grant Funding Agreement of £174,337 to be invested into its Figure Skating Programme over the next two years.
It follows UK Sport’s Annual Review Process and recognises the Performance Squad’s current success and future potential, in particular British Champions, Penny Coomes and Nick Buckland.
In 2012, the Nottingham-based Ice Dance couple finished 6th at the European Championships, won gold at the Nestle Nesquik Cup, silver at the Golden Spin of Zagreb and narrowly missed out a podium place at the China Grand Prix.
In a double boost for NISA, UK Sport has also increased the 2011-14 Grant Funding Agreement for Short Track Speed Skating to £2,953,400.
The additional £168,300, which comes into effect from 1 October 2012, has been awarded in recognition of the GB squad’s talent and medal potential for Sochi 2014 and beyond.
Stuart Horsepool, Performance Director – Short Track Speed Skating, said: “The Short Track Speed Skating World Class Programme had its most successful year ever in 2011/12. This has been recognised by UK Sport in the award of an extra podium place for the men’s relay. The recognition from UK Sport will give the skaters great confidence as they move forward with their preparation in their bid for medals in Sochi 2014.”
Keith Horton, chief executive, NISA, said: “This significant funding award demonstrates a major commitment to skating in the UK and a confidence in the sport’s governance structure. We are now consistently delivering on the world stage and the UK Sport increases will support both short track and figure skating to maximise medal opportunities in Sochi and Pyeongchang 2018.
“The award for figure skating is particularly important because it will now form the catalyst for a full Programme supported by UK Sport for Figure Skating. We have a real opportunity to create a step change in the delivery of World Class performance initially with in Dance but ultimately within Singles and Pairs.”
It comes as NISA, the Governing Body for ice skating in the UK, is celebrating one of its most successful years on and off the ice.
NISA scooped almost 20 international figure skating medals from tournaments across the globe and Short Track Speed Skating medals in 2011 consisted of two European ISU Championship medals, seven ISU World Cup medals, 12 other senior international medals, 18 international junior medals, plus a gold and silver from the inaugural Youth Winter Olympic Games. The National Squad finished the season with two top four World ranked speed skaters and the Men’s short track relay team World ranked 5th.
In the last year, NISA increased spend on figure skaters by 36 percent. 2010/11 also saw an increase in the subsidy that NISA makes towards the staging of the four British Championships (Figure, Adults, Solo and Short Track) and the three IJS events.
The NISA-staged European Championships 2012 was the only event supported financially by UK Sport in 2012.
Keith added: “It is exciting times for ice skating in the UK. Not only are we delivering on the ice, but the sport is in great shape off the ice. The investment is reward for the tremendous amount of hard work and commitment put in by the skaters, their coaches and the whole NISA team.”
Last Updated: 10th July 2012 5:11pm