Calgary Herald: Golden handshake

The Government of Canada announced Wednesday it will be matching the $1 million in funding raised recently by Own the Podium through various donors, with the money going towards the Innovations 4 Gold program, which will provide key and more often than not expensive help for athletes dreaming of climbing atop medal podiums in the future. Announced by Bal Gosal, Minister of State (Sport), the Canadian government has also committed to matching any funds raised, up to $1 million per year, for the next two years, potentially pulling a total of $6 million into the Innovation 4 Gold coffers. “

The Government of Canada recognizes the continued success of our athletes in major international competitions such as the upcoming 2015 Toronto Pan and Parapan American Games and the 2016 Rio Olympic and Paralympic Games depends on dynamic partnerships like this that will continue to provide them access to cuttingedge resources and technology,” Gosal said Wednesday, while announcing the funding match at WinSport’s High Performance Training Centre.

“We are a leading sport nation and we want to keep it that way.” Training methods. Recovery protocols. Nutrition. Sport psychology. Biomechanics. Sport analytics. It’s cuttingedge stuff that this money will support, which is music to bobsledder Jesse Lumsden’s ears. “New innovations are made every day, whether it’s mechanical, to make our equipment better, or biological, to assist us with training or injuryprevention and recovery,” the former CFL running back said.

“OTP’s supporters are making a direct, positive impact on us as athletes.” Canadian Tire, the Canadian Olympic Foundation, MITACS, the Institut national du sport du Quebec, and privatesector partners of the Canadian Paralympic Committee were named as chief donors. 

“Innovations 4 Gold is a difference maker,” said Anne Merklinger, CEO of Own the Podium. “If Canada is not doing innovation and research, then we are simply not part of the game. Innovations 4 Gold is a critical component of Own the Podium’s goal to deliver more medals for Canada.

By: Scott Mitchell