24th April 2014
Following the increase in funding from Sport England for the WC Talent Programmes, alongside the increased investment from UK Sport to support another weapon at Podium Potential level, the WCP staff team have taken time to reflect on the progress of the Talent Programmes to date. In light of the experiences over the last year and the new funding available, we have taken the opportunity to amend and refine the Programmes to maximise the opportunities available to develop our fencers across all six weapons.
Our previous funding conditions needed us to establish a defined performance pathway from initial identification through to the Podium, assess a required number of athletes and start developing them within a WCP centralised environment – all things we are proud to say we have done. By doing this we unlocked both an increase and stability in our funding. It is now time to further develop the quality and breadth of the talent pathway across all six weapons.
We will do this by providing concentrated support to a focussed group of Talent athletes, supporting athletes at the Talent Identification and Confirmation level to enable them to develop further and finally by widening the base of athletes supported at the first step of the Talent Pathway through developing and establishing Talent Development Centres (TDC). We are still refining these plans alongside Sport England and will soon be in a position to provide you with the detail of each Programme and how athletes are selected on to them we will publish on the website. This information will include the aims and expectations of an athlete, alongside the level of support they can expect to receive, at each stage of the WCP Pathway right through from a TDC to Podium Potential and Podium (when places become available).
We are continuing to roll out the Programmes for those already selected and we will also be inviting athletes to come to the next WCP Talent Assessment Day(s) in July (23rd-24th) in the school holidays to ensure we continue to develop and grow more athletes on the Programmes. This assessment will be by invitation only based on our revised plans for the Talent Programmes.
We will continue to provide you with detailed information as it finalised but should you have any queries in the short term then please do not hesitate to contact Joanna Cook, Head of Pathway Development in the first instance on Joanna.Cook@britishfencing.com