The Pathway to Excellence

On 1 April 2006, UK Sport assumed full responsibility for all Olympic performance-related support in England, from the identification of talent right the way through to performing at the top level to help improve performance and drive success in the future. In taking on this new responsibility, and remaining focused on a 'no compromise' approach, UK Sport has redefined the terms under which funding and support will be provided. It operates a Pathway to Excellence at three key levels:

  • Podium Programme
  • Podium Potential Programme
  • Talent Programme

To aid a wider understanding amongst all sports the terminology for each programme will be the same.

Podium Programme

This programme will support sports with realistic medal capabilities at the next Olympic Games (i.e. a maximum of four years away from the podium). At this level, an assessment of realistic medal projections determines the required investment per sport using the models introduced post-Beijing for Olympic sports. Athlete places will be distributed to a sport based on a combination of the sport's: results at the last Games; competitive track record; project medal capability in the future; demonstrated ability to constantly produce athletes through the pathway. Support is provided through a performance programme with the governing body and an athlete personal award.

This programme is managed by the National Performance Director.

Podium Potential Programme

This programme will support the stage of the Pathway immediately beneath the Podium Programme. For other sports it will comprise athletes that are typically six years away from the Podium. This is thought, due to the length of development time for a Modern Pentathlete to be slightly un-realistic and an extended time will be implemented. A well established and accepted Selection and Review Policy for both this programme and Youth Team Selection for International Competitions is in place, this is supplemented with a set of consideration criteria. Funding, by means of an athlete's personal award (APA), has been set at 3 levels for Podium Potential athletes.

Level D APA

  • Athlete must be in full-time training at the Bath National Training Centre
  • Meets individual performance targets set
  • Complies in full with contract/charter

Level E APA

  • Athlete must be within a maximum of 18 months of the year of reporting for full time training at the Bath National Training Centre and commit in writing to do so
  • Meets individual performance targets set
  • Complies in full with contract/charter

Level F APA

  • Athlete must have agreed in principle in writing that they will report for training at the Bath National Training Centre when eligible by age or stage of education to do so
  • Meets all WCP performance targets
  • Complies in full with contract/charter

Talent Programme

This programme is designed to support the identification and confirmation of athletes who have the potential to progress through the Pathway to Excellence with the help of targeted investment. Although there will be no direct payment of APA to Talent Programme athletes, funding will be provided to raise the level of sophistication and coaching through centralised training for the athletes that will be new to this programme.

It is expected that these athletes will have the right attributes to go on and effectively compete effectively on the world stage. Selection for GB teams and Internationals will see no change for these athletes.

Additional schemes working alongside the World Class Pathway Programme

English Talent Programme (ETP)

The England Talent Programme (ETP) has been created as part of Pentathlon GB's 2013-17 Whole Sport plan for submission to Sport England in order to develop a clearly defined and mapped talent development pathway between grass-roots sport and the Pentathlon GB Performance Programme.

For more information about the English Talent Programme and how it works see the ETP section of this site.