National governing body names 68 athletes set to receive support through its Olympic World Class Programme
Dina Asher-Smith, Mo Farah and Katarina Johnson-Thompson are among the 68 athletes named on the Olympic World Class Programme lists for 2020.
Of the three tiers to the programme, 16 athletes have been listed for ‘Olympic Podium’ level support, 29 for ‘Olympic Podium Potential’ and 23 for ‘Olympic Relays’.
The overall figure of athletes offered Olympic support is two more than in 2018-19.
Asher-Smith and Johnson-Thompson both gained gold at the IAAF World Championships in Doha, while Farah has recently announced he will be targeting a return to the track as he hopes to race the 10,000m at the Olympics in Tokyo after focusing on the marathon during the past couple of years.
After being listed solely for relay level support in 2018-19 but having gone on to finish fourth in the 200m in Doha, Adam Gemili will now receive individual Olympic Podium support.
Neil Gourley, Abigail Irozuru, Chris McAlister, Aimee Pratt, Charlotte Purdue, Jessica Turner, Steph Twell, Jamie Webb, Ben Williams and Jodie Williams have been added to the programme, while Rosie Clarke, Adam Hague, Desiree Henry, Shara Proctor and Adelle Tracey are among the athletes who do not retain their places.
In a statement published on social media, Sophie McKinna – who threw an 18.61m shot put PB in Doha to become the first Briton to make the world final since 1983 – confirmed that she had been offered WCP membership but decided to turn it down as she wishes to maintain her current set up ahead of the Olympics.
Please see the below statement relating to my offer of funding from British Athletics. pic.twitter.com/nKYIaHlBVo
— Sophie Mckinna (@sophiemac10) December 2, 2019
Jake Wightman and Tom Bosworth, who finished fifth and seventh in the 1500m and 20km race walk respectively in Doha, have moved from Olympic Podium Potential to Olympic Podium level support.
The World Class Programme (WCP) is UK Sport’s National Lottery-funded initiative designed to support the delivery of success at the Olympic and Paralympic Games. British Athletics adds that membership on the 2020 WCP is based on an athletes’ potential to win a medal at Tokyo 2020 or Paris 2024.
Due to the late staging of the World Para Athletics Championships, the full WCP including Paralympic levels is set to be announced in the new year.
British Athletics Olympic World Class Programme 2020
Olympic Podium (16)
Olympic Podium Potential (29)
Olympic Relays (23)