BOA chief slams lack of funding

The financial support received by winter sports in Britain is "unacceptable" in comparison to their summer counterparts, British Olympic Association chief Colin Moynihan has said.


"We are in a position at the moment where 6.5 million pounds is spent over the four-year period on winter sports and nearly 400 million on summer sports," BOA chairman Moynihan told reporters.

"Those sports are basically getting 1.5 per cent of what the summer sports are getting and that is an unacceptable level of support," he said two days before the Winter Olympics open in Vancouver.

The financial plight of winter sports in Britain was highlighted last Friday when the Alpine skiing and snowboarding governing body Snowsport GB went into administration, jeopardizing the team's inclusion in the 2010 Games.

The squad was saved after the BOA formed a subsidiary company, trading as British Ski and Snowboarding (BSS), for the duration of the Games to satisfy the requirements of world governing body FIS.

"We cannot allow the major governing body responsible for ski and snowboarding to go bankrupt within a week of the Games beginning. That lets down the athletes and that is unacceptable and has to be rectified," Moynihan said.

"People around the world simply don't understand that (could happen to) a country about to host the (Summer) Olympic Games in 2012."

The BSS will establish a new governing body after the Games which will safeguard the future of Britain's skiers and snowboarders beyond 2012.

"The next priority is to have the biggest consultation exercise in the history of British skiing, so that we can really represent the athletes," Moynihan added.

"This has to be a new dawn... I am absolutely ready to make sure that in four years' time there is a very different story to tell."

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