Three of Triathlon Ireland’s senior athletes are to receive carded funding handed down by the Irish Sports Council for 2014.
The ISC’s International Carding Scheme provides 1.6 million euros in funding to be distributed amongst 85 athletes from 15 different sports.
Aileen Reid is to receive the top level of funding this year up from ‘World Class’ level of 20,000 euros in 2013 to ‘Podium’ level of 40,000 euros in 2014. The funding increase is a welcome boost following Ireland’s best ever triathlon result when Aileen secured silver in the World Triathlon Series Grand Final in London.
Bryan Keane is to remain on funding of 12,000 euros at ‘International Level’. He is currently ranked 47th in the World but is aiming for the top 20.
For the first time 22 year old Ben Shaw will receive funding of 12,000 euros at the ‘International Level’ of carding. Ben has just recently come on programme with Triathlon Ireland and will be racing ITU World Triathlon Series and World Cups throughout 2014.
Irish Olympian Gavin Noble has unfortunately missed out on ISC Carding for 2014. Noble spent much of 2013 rehabilitating from knee surgery and raced just one ITU European Cup, hence not meeting the ISC’s Carding Criteria.
Former World and European Age Group Champion Conor Murphy was another to miss out on carding. He was taken down in a crash in Japan when a podium finish was within sight.
Murphy spent weeks recovering with severe road rash. Had he been able to avoid that crash he likely would have been eligible for International level carding.
Murphy’s ranking currently stands at 96th, however he will be confident he can improve upon that this season.
With his top 100 ranking the Armagh man will now get starts in the top tier World Triathlon Series, including Auckland, Cape Town, Yokohama, London and many more. He will kick his season off at the Mooloolaba World Cup on March 15.
A further 17 members of Triathlon Ireland’s Junior Performance Squad and four U23 and Development athletes will be supported by Triathlon Ireland directly, through athlete services and financial assistance.