15 Dec 2016

HPSNZ winners and losers

5:52 pm on 15 December 2016

Poor outings at the 2016 Rio Olympics have proved costly for the All Blacks sevens, New Zealand Cycling, Football, Triathlon and Swimming organisations.

The New Zealand sprint team of Eddie Dawkins, Sam Webster and Ethan Mitchell has won gold at the World Track Cycling Champs in London.

Eddie Dawkins, Sam Webster and Ethan Mitchell were New Zealand's only cyclists to win a medal at the Rio Olympics. Photo: Photosport

High Performance Sport New Zealand (HPSNZ) has released its funding for next year and will hand out $35 million in government grants.

There were some winners - Yachting New Zealand, Athletics and canoe racing have all received a boost in funding over the next two years.

New Zealand exceeded expectations with a record 18-medal haul in Rio, however a number of sports underperformed on their targets.

Cycling, swimming and Triathlon NZ have been hit hardest by the cuts.

Cycling - one of HPSNZ's leading targeted sports - returned just one medal in Rio and its funding has been cut by $500,000 to $4.2 million over each of the next two years.

Swimming didn't win any medals and has lost $400,000, dropping to $900,000.

Swimming New Zealand is effectively on a final funding warning in the wake of the disappointing performances at the Rio Olympics.

HPSNZ chief executive Alex Baumann conceded swimming could see its $900,000 disappear.

"They just haven't performed.

"The challenge is that we do still see potential, swimming is important to us but ultimately you only have a certain amount of investment.

"You have to really take a look at what goals you have and have a top down approach, so that maybe a possibity (further funding cuts) but we're hopeful Swimming New Zealand is on the right track," Baumann said.

Swimming New Zealand refused to comment following today's announcement but in a statement said it was seeking clarification from HPSNZ over its funding allocation.

Chief Executive of High Performance Sport NZ, Alex Baumann.

Chief Executive of High Performance Sport NZ, Alex Baumann. Photo: Photosport

Cycling New Zealand, however, was taking a more pragmatic approach to its cut.

Chief executive Andrew Matheson said he was anticipating a bigger cut than half a million dollars.

"There certainly won't be any frills in our programme that's for sure.

"As long as we're really clear on the athletes we want to work with, really focussing on the events that we're targetting and make sure that we stretch every dollar as far as we can."

"For the next two years we believe it won't affect us, certainly we will need that increase in 2019 otherwise we will start to have some notable impacts on Tokyo," Matheson said.

There were other losers as well - the All Black men's sevens team lost $300,000 after failing to make it past the quarter finals in Rio, while Triathlon New Zealand will now get $750,000 for 2017, compared to $1.25 million this year.

For every loser in sport there is a winner though, and the biggest is Athletics New Zealand.

Athletics won four of New Zealand's 18 medals - three bronze and one silver.

Not only has Athletics New Zealand received a $375,000 increase for next year, it's now a tier-one sport alongside cycling, rowing and yachting.

Pole vaulter Eliza McCartney celebrates after winning bronze at the Rio 2016 Olympics.

Pole vaulter Eliza McCartney celebrates after winning bronze at the Rio 2016 Olympics. Photo: Photosport

Athletics New Zealand high performance director Scott Goodman said the increase was a result of a lot of hardwork from both athletes and those around them, and believed it would lead to more medals in Tokyo in 2020.

"I think our beauracratic target would be three or more (medals).

"Internally we set ourselves some higher, more ambitious targets, I might be dreaming but I'd like to get up to five or six medals," Goodman said.

Canoe racing has also received an increase - $325,000 for next year following Lisa Carrington's success in Rio.

And after winning 21 medals in Rio, Paralympics New Zealand also received a boost in funding from $2.25 million to $2.6 million.