British Cycling has been awarded £35.4m ($48m USD) to fund the Great Britain national cycling team for the next four years in preparations for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.
The funding is part of a total investment of over £350m ($475m) in British sport for the next four years, with success at the Olympic and Paralympic Games the final objective. The funding was awarded by UK Sport, which is in turn financed by the British government and the British national lottery.
After a series of scandals in different sports, including cycling, UK Sport claimed it has widened its approach away from just targeting medal success at Olympic Games.
"There are two key things - broader diversity and broader engagement and that winning is still important but how we win is equally crucial to everyone in the system,” UK Sport chair and former rower Dame Katherine Grainger told the BBC.
"Everyone is on board to make sure that we win in the right way and that it isn't just a nice tagline to have. This isn't just a phase it is an evolution of the system and the how [we win] being so powerful and popular now."
Surfing and skateboarding have been funded while some traditional sports such as rowing, athletics, gymnastics and swimming have all had budgets cut of 10 per cent. However cycling, which has won a large haul of medals in recent Olympic Games, has secured a 12 per cent increase in funding and will ensure Great Britain is by far the best funded national team in the sport.
Great Britain topped the medals table at the 2016 Rio Games, winning 12 medals, four years after dominating in London, especially in track events.
“The money will be invested in supporting the very best of talented British cyclists as we seek to continue to be the top cycling nation at the Olympic and Paralympic Games,” British Cycling performance director Stephen Park said.
“We know that the success of the Great Britain Cycling Team on an international stage allows British Cycling to reach new audiences and encourage more people to ride bikes whether that is for fun, fitness, travel or for sport. More people cycling means more people leading happier, healthier lives and it means the places where we live and work will be less congested and less polluted.
“Our purpose is to inspire Britain to become a great cycling nation through being the world’s best sports team and the funding we are set to receive will play a significant part in us achieving this.”
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