British Olympic Association CEO Defends £32M Funding For Winter Sports
British Olympic Association CEO Bill Sweeney defended the £32M ($43.3M) investment in winter sports -- including more than £12M ($16.2M) on skeleton and curling -- and insisted that Team GB should bring home its "best-ever medal haul" from the Winter Games next month, according to Matt Dickinson of the LONDON TIMES. Sweeney said that Britain "was right to aspire to be a force in the Winter Olympics," while UK Sport CEO Liz Nicholl said that "medal moments" in PyeongChang "would justify the outlay in sports, such as the bobsleigh, with negligible participation." With a month until the Games, UK Sport on Monday confirmed that Team GB is expected to have its "best-ever Winter Games," with a target range of four to 10 medals and a specified goal of "at least five." Expectations have risen given that funding for the four-year cycle to PyeongChang "has more than doubled" to more than £32M across the Winter Olympics and Paralympics. Since Lizzy Yarnold won Gold in the skeleton at Sochi 2014, more than £6.5M ($8.8M) has been put into that discipline, "though that may not yield a medal given that the defending champion has struggled of late." Ski and snowboarding disciplines were awarded more than £5M ($6.8M) (LONDON TIMES, 1/9).