11 April 2012

Mission Gives Green Light For Home Games Success@EIS

UK Sport, the nation’s high performance sports agency, responsible for investing over £300 million of National Lottery, Exchequer and Team 2012 presented by Visa funds into Britain’s best Olympic and Paralympic sports and athletes for London 2012, have today revealed that, collectively, sports remain on track and are in a better position to succeed than ever before with just over 100 days to go.

‘Mission 2012’ was launched in 2008 and was developed to help each Summer Olympic and Paralympic sport understand how it is progressing against key performance criteria and identify anything that might stand in the way of success in 2012. It requires sports to think about their World Class Performance Programmes in three dimensions based around their System, their Athletes and the Climate within the sport.

Using a traffic light system, each sport is benchmarked against its agreed aspiration for 2012. If scored overall green then progress is deemed to be on track; if amber then challenges have been identified that require attention and action is being taken. If the assessment is red, then intervention by UK Sport is required.

In this penultimate Mission 2012 submission before London 2012, of the 28 Olympic sports assessed, 15 are now rated as green overall, the most since Mission 2012 began in January 2008, with 13 rated amber and no sport has an overall rating of red. The 18 Paralympic sports also remain on track, with ten sports on a green rating overall. The remaining eight sports are rated amber and no Paralympic sport rated as an overall red.

Liz Nicholl, UK Sport’s Chief Executive, said “It’s fantastic to see the majority of our Olympic and Paralympic sports, and more than ever before, in such a good place with just over 100 days to go. It has been an incredible journey so far, we are on track and the best is yet to come.

“The Mission 2012 process reassures us that our investment is working, it shows us where our support can have the most performance impact and allows us to remain confident in our ambitions for London 2012; to achieve a top four Olympic finish and second in the Paralympics, winning more medals across more sports.

“The final Mission 2012 assessment will take place in June, at which point we will be confirming the performance target ranges we will have agreed with each and every sport, bringing the scale of our collective ambitions for this momentous home Games into sharp focus.”

Minister for Sport and The Olympics, Hugh Robertson, said: “The increases in National Lottery funding agreed by the Government in May 2010 have allowed us to fully fund our athletes for London 2012 and beyond. In London we want Team GB and ParalympicsGB to deliver more medals across more sports than in Beijing and UK Sport’s latest analysis shows that preparations are going well.”

Gary Hall, GB Taekwondo’s Performance Director, said: “We’ve just named the team for the upcoming European Championships and competition for places remains intense, particularly as this is our final selection event before we choose the athletes that will represent GB at London 2012.

“The Europeans is an important event for us and a key milestone ahead of the Games. It’s a great chance for our British athletes to get valuable experience, medals and ranking points on home soil and we’re grateful for UK Sport and National Lottery support in enabling us to host this event.

“The fact that selection decisions are now so tough reflects how far we’ve come in the ‘London cycle’. We’ve been able to develop young talent such as Jade Jones whilst fast tracking athletes brought into the Academy via Talent ID initiatives, such as Damon Sansum and Ruebyn Richards.

“We’ve been able to attract world class coaches from overseas whilst maintaining a focus on developing British coaching talent, such as Paul Green and Steve Jennings, with the support of UK Sport’s elite coach development programmes.

“With the clock ticking towards the 100 day to go marker, we’ve still got a lot of hard work to do. But we’re on track and have a great chance to make a big impression in London this summer.”

UK Sport has increased the scope of its ‘Mission Control’ process to cover both plans for the Winter Games in Sochi 2014 as well as early thinking for the next Summer Games in Rio in 2016. Currently, one winter sport, Bobsleigh, is rated green overall, and the remaining five winter sports are amber.

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