Government Supports Athletes’ Preparation for Rio Olympics

Basseterre, St. Kitts, July 08, 2016 (SKNIS): The Rio Olympic Games are less than a month away and the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis has made valuable contribution permitted under international guidelines to ensure local athletes are ready for the global event.

To date, six athletes – five males and one female – have met the International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF) qualifying times and/or distances, and thus are eligible to participate in the field of Athletics during the Summer Games in Brazil.

Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Sports, Stanley Knight, said Government has invested $340,000 to the athletes through the Direct Athlete’s Assistance Programme. Those that received support were selected by the St. Kitts and Nevis Amateur Athletic Association (SKNAAA) and the St. Kitts and Nevis National Olympic Committee (SKNOC).

“Those organizations identified athletes that were close to the qualifying mark and the Government funded their training,” Mr. Knight stated. “Persons were training as far north as Canada, as far south as Trinidad, as far west as Jamaica.”

The support, in some cases, began in late 2015 up to last month’s staging of the National Championship organized by the SKNAAA. The Nevis Island Administration (NIA) also contributes to athletes from that island.

“It really has been a common Federal vision as to how we should go about making that type of investment into the athletes of St. Kitts and Nevis,” the Permanent Secretary noted.

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