Published Friday 11 June 2010

Following this morning’s announcement regarding high performance sport in New Zealand by the Prime Minister, the Right Honourable John Key, New Zealand Olympic Committee Secretary General Barry Maister makes the following statement. “The New Zealand Olympic Committee commends the government for its increased focus on high performance funding and facilities. Today’s announcement is hugely significant and it represents a major step up for high performance sport in this country. The new facilities created will provide elite athletes with world class training facilities linked with quality athlete support services throughout the country and the additional and ongoing funding will enhance the ability of athletes, coaches and sports plan ahead with certainty. “The New Zealand Olympic Committee also welcomes the new focus within SPARC on high performance programmes and leadership and we welcome the appointment of Olympians Mark Weldon and Hamish Carter to the newly created board. As an athlete-focused organisation, the New Zealand Olympic Committee believes this new structure will ensure the needs of our identified elite athletes are met in the most efficient manner. The New Zealand Olympic Committee will continue to strongly advocate for the National Sporting Organisations (NSOs) to remain pivotal to the development of most New Zealand athletes.The NZOC will remain the gateway to the Olympic and Commonwealth Games and looks forward to playing an active role in the new high performance space going forward.Selection policy for Commonwealth and Olympic Games will continue to be developed in conjunction with the NSOs and SPARC.We commend the government for providing increased opportunities for our elite athletes to excel and, in so doing, inspire thousands of young New Zealanders.” -            ends  - For more information please contact:Ashley AbbottCommunications ManagerPh: +64 9 3750040 extn 3Mb: +64 21 552021www.olympic.org.nz