223 Still In With a 'Fighting Chance' of Success at 2012.
Applicants for the Fighting Chance talent campaign, launched in October 2009 by Sport Taekwondo UK and the UK Talent Team (UK Sport & English Institute of Sport [EIS]), have discovered within the last seven days if their quest to win Olympic gold for Britain at London 2012 is still on track.
With over 1000 applications, including a number of World and European Champions, the selection process was extremely difficult with decisions being made primarily on the experience of applicants with high level full-contact combat competition experience, that will be eligible to compete in 2012.
As is the case with all competitive sport, some of those who submitted an application will be left disappointed with the result but as Gary Hall, Performance Director for Sport Taekwondo UK, explains: “The calibre of applicants was very high, much higher than we initially expected and this meant there were a lot of top quality athletes who were not selected for the next stage. Although this particular fast track programme is not for them this time, there is every chance that if they joined a local club, are persistent and committed, then they could compete at high level competitions and work their way right to the top in time for Rio 2016.”
For those who were successful this time round this is just the beginning of the road. In total, 223 people were selected (150 male and 73 female) to attend the phase 1 Talent Identification days in February, where the UK Talent Team and coaches from Sport Taekwondo UK will assess an applicant’s ability to transfer their own martial arts skills and knowhow to the Olympic code of taekwondo.
Paul Mullan, Senior Talent Identification Scientist for the UK Talent Team, said: “This is just the first step on what could be an incredible journey and whilst there is still a lot of hard work to come, I look forward to seeing what our selected competitors are capable of at the testing days.”
Should any applicants have any questions regarding the testing days please do not hesitate to contact Sport Taekwondo UK at email@example.com