General Manager of Performance Partnerships Eddie Kohlhase says HPSNZ will increase its financial support for athletes from its current level of $6.74m to $11.82m per annum.
“This is by far the biggest single increase in direct financial support for athletes since HPSNZ was formed in 2011,” he says.
The anchor point of HPSNZ’s 2024 Strategy is the new Performance Pathway and the financial support athletes receive will be tailored to their position on the pathway. The current system of carding athletes will be phased out.
A new Base Training Grant will be introduced with up to 240-260 high performance athletes receiving $25,000 per annum and up to 140-160 high performance potential athletes receiving $10,000 per annum.
“The Base Training Grant is directly linked to athlete wellbeing. When we talk to athletes about what has the biggest impact on their wellbeing, financial pressure is one of the most common responses, so we’ve acted on that,” Eddie says.
“This support will help relieve those pressures, enhance athlete wellbeing and enable athletes to train without worrying so much about their financial security.”
In another change to the way HPSNZ supports athletes financially, Performance Enhancement Grants (PEGs) will disappear and will be replaced by Excellence Grants (EGs).
“The EG will be a top up over and above the Base Training Grant to reward athlete performance at pinnacle events.”
Eddie says the detailed criteria for EGs is being worked through and will be finalised shortly.
The Base Training Grant, EGs and fully funded health insurance will all form part of Tailored Athlete Performance Support (TAPS) funding for athletes on the high performance pathway.
“As with all support HPSNZ provides to athletes, it will be tailored to their age and stage on the Performance Pathway.”
Overall HPSNZ will support up to 920 pathway athletes in the future compared to the current 559.
NSOs will lead their own Performance Pathways and determine, in consultation with HPSNZ, how many and which athletes are included.
The changes to financial support for athletes will come into effect from January 2022 as part of HPSNZ’s new Targeted Investment Framework.