The problem: Canadas Paralympic team performed well below expectations two years ago during the Summer Games in London. [url=htt

#1 von jokergreen0220 , 18.01.2018 08:47

The problem: Canadas Paralympic team performed well below expectations two years ago during the Summer Games in London. Mike Montgomery Jersey . One possible solution: targeting events that attract the severely disabled and have weaker entry fields, giving Canada a chance to boost its medal count. Savvy tactic or "shameful" sportsmanship? Own The Podium, Canadas high-performance sport funding initiative, is suggesting Canadian Paralympic officials target athletes who participate in sports for the severely disabled, a strategy that could boost Canadas faltering Paralympic medal count but one that is leaving some sports marketing executives and athletes suggesting officials are using a "back door" to get more medals. The suggestion by Own The Podium officials was disclosed in documents obtained by TSN under Canadas Access to Information laws and comes after a performance by the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic teams in London thats described by Canadian officials as disappointing. The documents include email correspondence, post-Games briefings and audits that dissect Canadas performance at the 2012 Summer Games in London and suggest that during the lead-up to the next Olympic Games in Rio in two years, Canada is paring the number of sports and athletes it funds through the Own The Podium program. The documents were produced by Own the Podium in late 2012 and were shared with the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Committees as well as the federal government. They highlight how Canadian officials have dropped the "please like us" veneer in favour of a more cutthroat approach to competition. Created in 2005, the Own the Podium program has pumped hundreds of millions of dollars into Canadas quest for medals, focusing on athletes who are predicted to have a top-three finish. In Vancouver, the program garnered widespread approval after Team Canada won 14 gold medals, tops among countries, after having been shut out of golds in the prior two Olympic Games held in Canada. In one document titled, "Confidential initial reflections from 2012 Paralympic Games," Own The Podium officials wrote Canada "took a significant step back relative to other leading nations" at the London Paralympic Games. Canada secured seven gold medals at London, half as many as Own the Podium staff had predicted for the Canadian team, according to the Oct. 4, 2012, document. "Other nations have adopted a much more professional approach in many para-sports," the document says. "There is some complacency within some para-sports in Canada. "Canada struggles with entries in events for classes with more severely disabled athletes," the document says. "Many nations appear to have targeted performance in events for female athletes with a disability… Consider strategic investments that support potential multi-gold individual athletes and events with weak depth of field such as events for athletes with severe disabilities and some events for female athletes." Own the Podium has cut funding to several Paralympic sports following London, including womens wheelchair basketball (which received a total of $986,000 in 2009-10 and 2010-11 but has not received funding since the 2012 Games) and womens goalball. Equestrians funding was also cut drastically. Still, Own The Podium has increased its funding in the Paralympics to triathlon, canoe-kayak and archery and overall, its Paralympic funding has totaled $10.1 million in the first two years of the Rio 2016 quadrennial, up from $9.4 million during the first two years of the London quadrennial. One of the documents conclusions has been censored by the Canadian government, which cited the confidentiality of a third party. The tactic of targeting sports for the severely disabled is polarizing. "On one hand, the outcome (support for a worth cause) is good," said Mike Gilleran, executive director of the Santa Clara Universitys sports law and ethics department. "On the other, the motive, lets kick ass in this weaker depth of field for the glory of Canada is probably not the most inspirational call to arms weve ever heard." Andy Harkness, a sports marketing executive in Toronto whose clients include Canadian Tire and Scotiabank, said he doesnt like the strategy. "We shouldnt prop up our medal counts on the back of lesser known sports and athletes," Harkness said. "The rub to me is that it sounds like we are using severely disabled athletes to prop up numbers and that doesnt sound right." Jeff Adams, a Canadian Paralympian and six-time world champion in wheelchair sports, called Own The Podiums tactic "shameful." "How are the underpinnings of this document reconciled with the spirit of sport and all the motherhood and apple pie messages about not winning at all costs?" Adams told TSN. "When that win at all costs mentality is layered with win the easy medals at all costs, it becomes doubly wrong," he said. "Chasing after easy things is certainly not what sport taught me, and this sends a terrible message to athletes and to Canadians. Im embarrassed this document was created." Own The Podium chief executive Anne Merklinger said the tactic has nothing to do with cutting financial support to athletes who already are receiving help. "Its not a question of narrowing the focus," she said in an interview. "Its a question of focusing on athletes that have severe disabilities because when you look at the international scene, there are very few entries from nations in categories of athletes that have severe disabilities. That is a strategic opportunity. If Canada is able to identify athletes with severe disabilities, that is a medal opportunity for our country."Martin Richard, a spokesperson with the Canadian Paralympic Committee, said he attended a conference in 2012 when Merklinger disclosed the suggested tactic. "These were early observations," Richard said. "I understand (the concerns.) Its the language. Its direct. Theres no rationale behind it, and it opens it up for interpretation." Bob Stellick, a Toronto sports marketer, suggested Own The Podiums suggestion is a sign of the times. "It sounds harsh but really does mimic what (Canadas Olympic teams) were doing at the regular Olympics," Stellick said. "They definitely focused on more obscure and limited talent pool sports." Own The Podium also noted in the confidential documents that able-bodied Canadian Olympic teams in rowing, cycling and diving also underperformed--at a time when around the world, "escalating investment in Olympic medals has turned into an arms race." There was a "shallow pool of podium potential athletes," Merklingers group said in a Sept. 17, 2012, memo. "Anticipate that fewer sports will be targeted for 2016." Since London, Own The Podium has cut funding on the able bodied side to mens wrestling, fencing, gymnastics. Sports that have received an increase in funding include archery, tennis and womens rugby. Justin Grimm Jersey . Consider it received. Attacking on offence early and often, the Penguins topped the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-1 on Saturday night as Jussi Jokinen scored the go-ahead goal in the third period to help give Pittsburgh a 3-2 lead in the Eastern Conference playoff series. Wade Davis Jersey . 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The problem: Canadas Paralympic team performed well below expectations two years ago during the Summer Games in London. [url=htt

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