Money, money, money: The funding woes of British ski racers

We’ve all been there, the sometimes perplexed look you are given after telling someone you’re a ski racer, which is often followed by the question – “What’s ski racing?” There is no denying that alpine ski racing is a minority … Continue reading

Should British ski racers receive funding?

Currently, only eight British winter sport athletes receive money directly from UK Sport, and none of our alpine ski racers are included in this number. The organisation stopped their funding of British racers earlier this year for a number of reasons, and athletes now more than ever have to raise their own funds or secure sponsorship in order to continuing competing at a professional level and representing their country.

Many athletes have been turning to organising their own fundraisers in order to drum up the money needed to help fund their £50,000+ a year programme and help them on their road to Sochi for the 2014 Winter Olympics. In October, Chemmy Alcott and Dougie Crawford hosted a Sochi fundraiser in London that included a Question of Sport Live Winter Olympic Special, and later this month Dave Ryding will host his own fundraiser race at Castleford Sno Zone РSee the Events page for more details or the event flyer here.

We personally think it is ridiculous that so many talented athletes have to worry about funding their own careers when this time could be spent training. We know money is short, but the point we are trying to make is how can the current and younger skiers coming through the system progress to a professional level if they are not given the funding to do so in the first place because of past results. Vicious circle anyone? We understand that UK Sport has an extremely tough role deciding who receives funding and who doesn’t, so we will be delving further into this topic very soon. But enough about us, we would love to hear what you think about this highly contested issue?

Do you think our British alpine skiers should receive funding? Or do you think it is fair that athletes fund themselves when competing in a minority sport? Or do you have a completely differing view? Please let us know by answering the poll below and feel free to leave any comments in the comment box at the bottom of the page.

Anyone wishing to help out our British racers can do so by donating via the British Ski and Snowboard website. Any donations will go directly to support athletes and their coaches. Team GB currently has eight spots for alpine skiers to go to Sochi, and whilst some have already made the qualifying criteria, others are currently working their way towards this.

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