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SPARC Boss Applauds Rowing Success Off The Water

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
SPARC Boss Applauds Rowing Success Off The Water

With the 2010 World Rowing Championships getting underway at Lake Karapiro this weekend, SPARC Chief Executive Peter Miskimmin has congratulated Rowing New Zealand on the hard work that's been put in both on and off the water.

"Over the next eight days our Kiwi rowers have their chance to shine, and hopefully be rewarded for the hard work they and their coaches have done in the lead-up to this event," Mr Miskimmin said.

"Equally though, there's been a lot of hard work done by the people who run rowing to get the sport to this point - where it is building a strong organisation off the water and is able to take full advantage of hosting a great event like this. "

New Zealand rowers have a proud history of winning on the world stage and the sport has been funded by SPARC for many years. Rowing currently receives $4.6 million a year, in both High Performance investment in the sport and Performance Enhancement Grants for individual athletes.

Mr Miskimmin says two years ago, Rowing New Zealand approached SPARC for help in improving the way the sport is run, both on and off the water.

"They took stock of their organisation and decided there were better ways they could be doing things, so they asked us for help," he said.

"Since then we've been working with them to make the sport financially sustainable and ensure there are good systems and processes in place, as well as a strategic plan for future success.

"The solid platform they're now providing will allow our rowers to go on to do even bigger and better things and I congratulate them on that."

SPARC and the Government have also invested in the development of the new $4.4 million Rowing New Zealand High Performance Centre at Lake Karapiro, which will be in the international spotlight during the world champs.

"It's a great facility, and it's a far cry from the very modest facilities our rowers have used over the past decade," Mr Miskimmin said.

"It's one of New Zealand sport's showcase training centres, and I'm told a number of key personnel from other sports have been to check it out, so it's gaining an exceptional reputation."

The Government contribution to the centre was confirmed earlier this year as part of the announcement of a major re-shaping and expansion of high performance sport, aimed at ensuring New Zealand is consistently one of the most successful sporting nations in the world.

Mr Miskimmin says there are also plans for a new high performance centre for cycling, as well as a $40 million expansion of North Harbour's Millennium Institute which will become the National Training Centre for High Performance Sport. "All up it amounts to more than a 50% increase to current levels of funding for high performance sport, and we believe that will be evident from the 2016 Olympics.

"For the next eight days however, it's all about the rowers who're representing us at the world champs at Karapiro. They've put in all the hard work and they have a tremendous passion to perform in the black singlet. I'm sure they will do us proud."

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