New Zealand Olympic Committee Prepares to Select Winter Team

Fewer than two days remain until the New Zealand Olympic Committee names the team to compete at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games.

With quota spots confirmed by the International Federations and nominations submitted by the snow, ice speed skating and skeleton national organisations, New Zealand Olympic Committee selectors are now assessing athletes against selection policy criteria.

Selection criteria has been stepped up from previous Olympic Winter Games for Sochi 2014.

New Zealand Olympic Committee CEO Kereyn Smith says that the selectors will be looking to ensure that athletes are capable of credible results at the Olympic Winter Games. “The selection process is evidence based and athletes’ performance data is compared to criteria previously agreed with National Sporting Organisations,” she said.

“We’re looking for athletes that have been finishing in the top half of World Cup and other top fields over the Olympic qualification period.

“The Olympic Winter Games happens just once every four years. The very best in the world come together and perform at the very top of their game. The result is an incredibly high level of performance, and in New Zealand’s case, in a variety of extremely risky sports. We want our athletes to be prepared for that.”

The New Zealand Olympic Committee selection panel comprises New Zealand Olympic Committee board members Simon Wickham (Chair) and Tony Hall as well as independent selector, Mike Kernaghan.

The New Zealand Olympic Team will be announced Friday 24 January and the organisation expects the team to comprise around 14 athletes.