UK Sport will plead with the Government to extend their current level of funding through to next year’s rearranged Tokyo Games.
Britain’s summer Olympic and Paralympic sports are being backed to the tune of £345million – split between public and National Lottery money – for the four years leading to Tokyo 2020.
But the current funding cycle ends in March 2021, so no longer covers the Olympics as intended, and the budget is yet to be set for the four-year period to Paris 2024, which many fear is going to be slashed.
UK Sport chair Katherine Grainger admitted: ‘We’re in uncharted territory as to how we go from that March break point through to the summer, where it looks like the Games are going to be. That’s the kind of conversation we’ll be having with the Government.
‘I don’t want to make any presumptions at this point but we’ve had incredible support from the Government over many, many years for high-performance sport.
‘So I would very much hope that they understand the challenges that we’re all facing in all the different sectors right now and they would want to see the Olympic and Paralympic teams supported as they always have been right through to the summer of 2021.’
UK Sport’s world-class programme receives 31 per cent of its funds from the Government and 69 per cent from the National Lottery.
Funded athletes – on the athlete performance award – receive all of their money from the Lottery.
But Lottery sales are understood to have slumped because of the coronavirus pandemic, causing more concern within UK Sport.
The Government have pledged to cover any shortfall in Lottery income but only until March 2021.