By Nigel Wynn
Cycling will receive £25,980,427 of funding ahead of the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan – £4 million less than for the 2016 Rio Games. UK Sport announced the funding figures for the 2017-202 Olympic cycle on Friday.
Prior to the Rio Games, cycling received funding of £30,267,816 from UK Sport, and £26,032,000 for the 2012 London Olympics.
The funding will support Great Britain's cycling team, comprising those taking part in road cycling, time trial, track cycling, BMX and cross-country mountain biking.
Great Britain topped the cycling medal table at the Rio Games, claiming 12 medals, six of which were gold. All but one of those 12 medals were won in the velodrome, the exception being Chris Froome's bronze medal in the men's road time trial.
Chair of UK Sport Rod Carr said in a statement: "These are critical funding decisions for sports to take them on their journey to Tokyo 2020 and beyond so the historic success at Rio can be maintained.
"We have received incredible support from the Government, who have confirmed their commitment to funding our ambitions through to Tokyo 2020, providing the financial assurances needed for the continued evolution of our high performance system to ensure the athletes and sports with strong medal potential have what they need to inspire the nation."
The cycling figure is part of an overall investment of £345m for Tokyo from National Lottery and government money. UK Sport states that the medal target for Tokyo is 51-85 medals.
British Cycling chief executive Ian Drake reacted to the news, saying: “We are pleased that UK Sport is backing British Cycling with significant investment for the next Olympic and Paralympic cycle. I’d like to thank UK Sport and the National Lottery for their continued support and we are confident we can deliver on that.
“Topping the cycling medal tables at the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games remains our goal and we began implementing our Tokyo plans two years ago."
The highest-funded sport is rowing, with £32,111,157 of funding, which is around £500k less than for Rio. Athletics and sailing will also receive more funding than cycling for Tokyo. Cycling was the second-highest funded sport for Rio after rowing, but is now fourth on the table.
Five sports that received funding for Rio will receive no money at all for Tokyo: archery, badminton, fencing, weightlifting and wheelchair rugby.
Earlier this week, the Telegraph reported that the British government injected a further £30m of funds into UK Sport to counter-balance a shortfall from the National Lottery, which has suffered from falling lottery ticket sales.
The amount of funding to be given to Para cycling has increased from the Rio Paralympic Games. The 2017-2020 figure has been set at £7,662,052, up from £6,833,000 for Rio.
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