BOA vow Team GB will try to top London 2012 medal tally at Rio 2016

 

The British Olympic Association today vowed Great Britain would do
everything possible to top their amazing Olympic medal haul from London
2012 at the next Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Britain have had their best Olympics since 1908, winning at least 64 medals on home soil, including a minimum of 28 golds.

Australia are the only country ever to claim more gold medals at a Games immediately after one they have hosted - in 2004 - but no nation has ever secured more medals overall.

The BOA want to be the first and clearly believe today's announcement that there will be no Government cuts in the funding of Olympic sports ahead of 2016 could make it possible.

BOA chairman Lord Moynihan said: "The aspiration is always to push on and do better - absolutely.

"If you're an athlete, if you're a team, your aspiration is always to do better. No question at all in my mind.

"You never say, 'Okay, we did very well. Now let's fall back'.

"We have phenomenal athletes in this country, unbelievable athletes, and we're building great support structures.

"And we must always push on and always raise the bar and always seek to do better."

Moynihan insisted it was far too early to set specific medal targets but added: "Every sport should have a comprehensive review of their performance.

"Those who have done really well will need to review why they did really well.

"Those who haven't lived up to the expectations will need to review that.

"It won't be until we're very close to Rio that we have an assessment of who we're competing against, let alone how good our own team is."

Britain have won medals in 15 sports at London 2012, four more than at the Beijing Games four years ago.

BOA chef de mission Andy Hunt said: "I believe it could be more than that.

"And that's such an important legacy from these Games.

"Our insight and engagement with sports is like never before and we're not going to stop that."

Sir Clive Woodward, who joined the BOA as director of elite performance in 2006 and became one of their deputy chefs de mission two years later, admitted the challenge now was to make competing away from home an "advantage".

Admitting the "immense" crowd had made a huge difference to Britain's success in London, Woodward added: "The interesting thing now is how can we make this an away advantage, how can we rethink all our thinking now to make sure that when we go to Rio now, can this be an advantage actually playing away from home."

Woodward insisted he had "every intention" of staying at the BOA in the run-up to 2016.

The man who led England to Rugby World Cup glory in 2003 was strongly linked with a return to the Rugby Football Union as elite performance director last year.

But he said today: "The longer I've been in this role, the more I've grown into it and enjoyed it. This has been a remarkable few weeks.

"I'm due to go to Rio at the end of September. We've already been there twice.

"It's just hugely challenging now because can we replicate what we've done here in terms of the support of the team and the athletes in Rio?"

PA

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