"UK Sport, the nation's high performance sports agency, has today announced an award of up to £348,450 to British Ski and Snowboard to be invested in their athletes' preparations for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Games.
Following the collapse of SnowsportGB prior to the Vancouver 2010 winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, UK Sport had been unable to invest in the snow sports until the full establishment of the new British Ski and Snowboard national governing body. UK Sport is now confident that a performance programme to support the most talented snow sports athletes has been put in place and is now able to start investing, in order to seize the opportunities within the sport to win medals in Sochi 2014.
This initial short term award, running to September 2012, will allow the sport to support their athletes for the remainder of the current competition season, and up to the next review point, at which UK Sport will consider the sport's organisational development and performance progress, and whether to make a further award for the remainder of the Sochi cycle (up to April 2014). The award is focused mainly at the new Olympic slopestyle disciplines (Ski and Snowboard) where Britain currently has a number of athletes who have been on the Podium at world premier events.
This award adds to the existing £11.3 million UK Sport investment of National Lottery and Government Exchequer funding into British winter Olympic and Paralympic sports towards success in Sochi 2014.
Liz Nicholl, Chief Executive of UK Sport, said: "UK Sport is pleased to welcome British Ski and Snowboard to the winter sports World Class Performance Programme. It is testament to the recent progress they have made as a sport after a difficult period.
"We have, as ever, applied our investment principles rigorously and the sport has made a credible business case for a performance programme that could deliver medallists at the Winter Olympics in Sochi 2014. They have made significant strides on a performance potential basis and this initial investment is recognition of the work that has been done so far."
David Edwards, Chief Executive of British Ski and Snowboard, said: "We are delighted that UK Sport shares our view of the potential for our athletes to win medals in Sochi and future Olympic events and we are very grateful for the support announced today.
"When SnowsportGB went in to administration in January 2010 Lord Moynihan took on the Chairmanship of British ski and snowboard, the replacement Governing body for snowsports. Since then we have raised substantial funding for our athletes, put a new robust governance structure in place and worked closely with UK Sport on plans for the future.
"With the help of the BOA we have achieved a tremendous amount for Snowsport in Great Britain in the last two years. With this game changing award from UK Sport the bar is now set higher. We look forward to the next two years with huge enthusiasm!"
The award is aimed at supporting 3 podium and 5 development level athletes. British Ski and Snowboarding will now finalise thier selection criteria, and begin the Athlete Personal Award allocation process, at which point they will be able to announce the athletes who have been selected onto thier programme. BSS hope to be able to complete this process in the coming weeks."