World champion Tamsin may have to quit
Watching the Olympic coverage recently has brought back pleasant memories for World Champion Surf Kayaker Tamsin Green. Next summer she will be defending her title again, in Australia.
Most of the athletes she has been watching are effectively professional – totally funded by their national sports bodies. If not that, they certainly receive grants for equipment, subsistence, travel and coaching.
Surf kayakers have to raise their funding themselves. Before the last World Championships, Tamsin who lives in High Hauxley, sent out tens if not hundreds of letters to firms and companies offering publicity and motivational talks in return for financial help.
“I’ll find funding for the World Surf Kayak Championships extremely difficult,” says Tamsin. “I will have to pay for my travel, including boats and equipment, to the other side of the world, take two weeks off work and pay for food and accommodation while I’m out there. I will struggle to find the money.
“For the last few years, since winning the British Championships, I have received some kit sponsorship, including boats and paddles. Buff – a non kayaking company – have been fantastic supporters – giving me buffs and clothing.
“And Alnwick Round Table gave me £250 in 2009, which was very generous.”
The British Canoe Union’s Northern region gave Tamsin and her husband Dan, who is also high up the world surf kayak rankings, £250 each towards the 2011 World event.
“In Northern Ireland, the current Men’s World Surf Kayak Champion has received substantial amounts in this and previous years. UK sports funding is divided equally between the four countries and as there are fewer people in Northern Ireland individuals receive much more.
“The situation arises partly because surf kayaking is not an Olympic sport”, says Tamsin. “But I’m still competing for my country at world level. Other countries fund non-Olympic sports. Any money we get we raise ourselves or by coaching through England Surf Kayak”.
If you would like to help Tamsin go for Gold in Australia next year, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 01665 712929.