FYI: The Future of U.S. Sprint Kayaking Program in Jepordy

Hello Everyone,
This is currently what is happening to the national sprint kayaking program.

This past week, the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) informed the Olympic family that the 2011 NGB funding budget, where USA Canoe/Kayak derives the majority of its annual revenue, was cut by $5 million less than it had in 2010. With this significant decrease, the USOC had to make difficult decisions with regards to NGB allocation.

Their message to USA Canoe/Kayak is that their priority objectives for funding will be supporting what they feel are the best opportunities for medals at the 2012 Olympics in London, followed by programs that made significant improvement from 2009 to 2010. The parts of the USOC’s support equation most negatively affected are the programs that are identified as being on track for the 2016 and 2020 Olympic Games.

The USOC believes that USA Canoe/Kayak’s program is headed in the right direction and strongly believes in the new coaches that have been hired. However, the opportunities that the USOC felt were available in 2012 for medals are no longer realistic in Sprint. As a result, USA Canoe/Kayak is now forced to make changes to the Senior Sprint program despite the fact that the USOC has strongly reiterated that it is supportive of our new coaches and the direction in which the program is headed. Consequently, our residency program at the Olympic Training Center (OTC) is also not being renewed and now being directed to very specific programs from sports that have proven Olympians and international competition medalist as a part of their program.

Below is a quick outline of the USOC changes to our Sprint Program starting in 2011:

· USOC will no longer fund Senior National Team coaching positions despite their support for these individuals
· Funding for Program support has been dramatically reduced
· USOC requests 80% of the National Team Director’s time will be dedicated to the Slalom program and 20% to the Sprint program, which is currently being specifically defined
· USOC will cut the residential OTC program in Chula Vista and support one camp based athlete

As challenging as our next few steps will be, it is imperative that we pull together and work as one team to build and sustain the Sprint program for the long haul, as well as continuing the forward progress we have already begun to make. Within a short period, we have started to formulate a plan, that while it has some key elements to still to be determined, it will absolutely get us moving on the right track. We believe that we have strong partners across the U.S. that will rise to this new challenge and provide the funding and services needed to support those athletes committed to training for London and Rio.

In the wake of the news today we recognize that it is more important now than ever to make some important acknowledgements about moving our program forward:

· We must build sustainable ways to support the program outside of USOC funding (USOC does not want to see coaching positions removed because USOC financial support is pulled)
· Immediately act upon fundraising campaign to retain a full time national team coaching position
· One individual can not serve as the leader of High Performance for two Olympic disciplines without additional staff support
· Recognize our Strategic Plan as our guide for moving forward
· USOC acknowledges our growth at the lower and middle parts of our pipeline and the work of the National Development Director
· USOC acknowledges Oklahoma City as a center for progress and growth for Sprint
· Must explore additional opportunities in Hawaii and other cities for National Team

There is no doubt that we face some challenges over the next few months, but I believe only through adversity can you get stronger. In the near future this will put us in a better position to support you as athletes to the best of our ability. We believe in this team and your ability to be successful in face of our current challenges and hope that you believe in us to find the support needed to continue to support you at the highest level.

Next steps, we will be formulizing our plan to resolve the situations that we face and will organize an all athlete conference call next week to discuss. Our goal is to communicate things with you as fast as we possibly can.

We all have a choice right now, we can dwell on the things that we do not have or did not get and remain in the quicksand that we have been in, or we can choose to find the opportunity in the situation to get better. It’s a choice that each of you will need to make and one that we as an organization have made. I do not want to diminish the shock of this news to each of you, as you each decide how this affects you and your opportunity to make the 2012 Olympic Team. Young paddlers underneath you will be watching how you handle this situation and waiting on all of us to pave the path to a more successful USA Canoe/Kayak both on and off the field of play. Don’t allow the fear and trepidation that you feel today to prevent you from sticking to your plan and achieving your goals that you have outlined with your coach. Sure modifications to that plan might need to be made, but all you can do now is allow this to motivate you to train harder, work smarter and let the results be your voice. On the staff/volunteer end, it is now up to us to position the organization to be successful and have everyone roll up their sleeves to bring in funding.

USA Canoe/Kayak can and WILL get better….



William Irving
National Teams Director
USA Canoe/Kayak

Submitted by PatDolan on Wed, 11/17/2010 - 5:10pm

sounds like a bunch of political crap to me....

first, who says that the US can't medal in sprints. And just because there is competition and it is not a guarenteed win, why pull money? Shouldn't the sports that are not a slam dunk be funded more, not only to help the atheletes, but bring more interest in the sport?....

ok, off the soapbox. - Pat, what can we do as individuals whom want to see you guys (and the sport) succeed?

#1 Thu, 11/18/2010 - 4:30am

Expect more of this as the TEA/GOP gain more influence in American politics. These are the people who would like to eliminate ALL public funding for things that don't jibe w/ their particular world view. Get active in politics or prepare to say goodbye to the Dept. Of Education, National Parks, Public Universities and anything else that these extremists would like to privatize or simply do away w/.

#2 Thu, 11/18/2010 - 8:03am

@Jim: Ooooh, I think I hear Fuze and Yankee dusting off their soap-boxes after that last salvo.

@Pat: To echo harleyK, what can we as individuals do to assist from a volunteer stand-point and will you (USA Canoe/Kayak) be setting-up some sort of on-line or mail-in fund for those that want to help the sport grow and can do so through personal contributions?

#3 Thu, 11/18/2010 - 8:44am

Thank you all for your support during this unfortunate circumstance. If you wish make a tax deductible donatation to the Dolan Brothers please send a check to :

Care of Ann Dolan
115 Ku'uala St.
Kailua, HI 96734

Make check out to: HCKT and put " Dolan Brothers" in the the "for" line.

They will also be coming out with Fund-raising Tee-shirts at the end of this year...

2011 is the Olympic Qualifying year and they need all the support they can get to fund them to the World Cups and World Championships.

Mahalo for all your support!

Email us at for more info or other ways to donate.

~ Dolans/ CommOcean Team

#4 Thu, 11/18/2010 - 9:28am

The US Government does not currently fund the USOC... just saving my buddy fuzie from a aneurism ;>

#5 Thu, 11/18/2010 - 10:18am

We're too busy wasting money in Aghanistan and Iraq to fund our Olympic team. Super. WTF is wrong w/ this picture? !

#6 Thu, 11/18/2010 - 11:41am

Now fuze is having an aneurism.

#7 Thu, 11/18/2010 - 1:29pm

I doubt it, he's way too healthy and strong.

#8 Thu, 11/18/2010 - 1:49pm

All together now, let's all write a check out to HCKT for the Dolan Bros.

Geeve umm.

#9 Thu, 11/18/2010 - 5:13pm

Regarding the dumb ass comment by 'Jim' posted this morning:

Jim, You were standing in the wrong line when they were handing out brains, because you do not have any.

To blame this on the TEA party or GOP is idiotic. The new candidates elected did not have anything to do with this, they do not take office until January. This has been in the works for a long time, and if you want to stupidly blame this on politics, then blame it on the party in office.

The issue is that the USCKT does not have influence regarding funding. The money is going to go to high profile sports, Swimming, Gymnastics, Track, Basketball with the pro's, etc. It is a shame. You want to do something constructive, write to your Senators and Representative or better yet write a check to HCKT/Dolans.

#10 Thu, 11/18/2010 - 6:27pm

fuze's alter ego?

#11 Fri, 11/19/2010 - 2:39am

I agree with harleyK

Political talk-BS communication.

Get some guts and say- "We are cutting you, find private funding, we don't have concrete plan for you"

In some ways it is the communication that government uses. I work in non-profit/psuedo government- wife works in private/business industry. I always compare the way they communicate.

Usually Business tell it like it is and gets to the point.

In many ways would be refreshing in the US rather than all of the government angling and everyone getting their "shine" one.

#12 Fri, 11/19/2010 - 6:03am

Apparently, Veteran, you did not understand my post. I said that we should expect more of this as the TEAs gain influence, and we should. The constructive thing that I will do is to continue to oppose reactionaries like yourself, who would like to privatize everything. Don't tell me, if there were a market value in sprint kayaking they could easily find a sponsor, blah, blah....

#13 Fri, 11/19/2010 - 6:38am

Lotta leftist ranting going on here from jimbo !! If this continues unabated ,, Im going to hit back with a devastating monologue ,, filled with truth ,, that even my friend Rush Limbaugh would like to aspire to. Dont doubt me !!!!

#14 Fri, 11/19/2010 - 1:50pm


Thanks for sharing. Letting people know specific ways on how they can help would be awesome. I'm sure there are enough good hearts and minds out there that can help out.


Don't know you but you sound like an idiot. Don't use this post to spew your political feelings now matter what they may be. Get involved and help. Be solution oriented, not a negative bitchy little girl.


Although I love Limbaugh, lets not go there. That's not what this is about, and there's no way to reason with people that base political beliefs on emotion. So save your breath. Let's keep this clean of politics.

#15 Fri, 11/19/2010 - 2:14pm

Hmmm, musta struck a nerve w/ the half dozen Tea bagger paddlers in the world. What ever happened to respectful disagreement? : ) The solution is public funding for Olympic sports, rightie. Now run along and catch some Glenn Beck.

#16 Fri, 11/19/2010 - 3:46pm

Listen up all you hippy liberals. Keep the gov'mt outta my life and pockets and we'll all get along fine. Unless two dudes wanna get married or some crazy crap like that. Then we gots problems.

#17 Fri, 11/19/2010 - 3:54pm

Hahaha, suckers!

#18 Fri, 11/19/2010 - 6:26pm

No nerve struck. Trust me, it takes a lot more than that. :-)

Just trying to make a point that USA Kayak was looking for help, not people's political opinions.

Perhaps people are too dumb, blind, or lazy to have gotten that message.

Read the first post, be constructive, and ignore the rest of the bullshit.

#19 Sat, 11/20/2010 - 7:56am

Sir, yes sir!'re right. What can I say, I saw an inappropriate opening for a TEA bash, and I took it!

#20 Sat, 11/20/2010 - 10:27am

Crush private sector growth and profit making and ; What a suprise,,, no tax revenue for the fun stuff paddlers like to do. Big Gov and fun stuff DONT go hand in hand ,,, trust me on that !!
You people who think big gov is going to fund your fun are dreaming . Don
t doubt me .

#21 Sat, 11/20/2010 - 2:16pm

Tell'um fuze,

Don't forget the part where us teabaggers hate gov't spending (unless it's to make war, of course.) I know Iraq was expensive, but look at what a success it turned out to be. That's why I didn't complain for those eight beautiful years. Seriously, what benefit is there to spending money on science, arts, education. All those do is spread those God-forsaken liberal ideals.

#22 Sat, 11/20/2010 - 10:04pm

Looks like there`s two of us on here now Nug ...

#23 Sun, 11/21/2010 - 12:05pm

Keep the government BS out of this conversation, the US government does not support or finance the US Olympic Committee. (USOC) The USOC has made this funding decision, The USA Canoe and Kayak Team Office and Board of Directors have lived of this funding for YEARS. So while it is a shame that this has happened, this should shed some light on the fact that USA CANOE KAYAK needs to raise funds for these programs and athletes. The obvious and more direct way to help is to support athletes like the Dolans is through making a donation to HCKT. Don't forget to support HCKT in general so that we continue to see more and more "DOLANS"....

so to make a long story short, don't be a prick and hijack a post like this with BS government views or opinions from either side

#24 Sun, 11/21/2010 - 6:04pm

Good idea to support HCKT in general. I'll make out another separate check to them only. Come on paddlers, please kokua, for they really do need our help. Unlike tennis or golf, etc., this sport lacks the big bucks.

#25 Mon, 11/22/2010 - 1:59am

How dare you condemn my BS political rhetoric, Jimothy.

#26 Mon, 11/22/2010 - 7:52am

This news really makes my heart ache.

#27 Sat, 12/04/2010 - 5:15pm

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