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Mary Peters Trust provides majority of our Team GB and Team Ireland athletes with funding for Olympic games in Rio

By Jill Goligher

Northern Ireland’s leading sports charity has also provided financial support for half of local competitors taking part at the Paralympic Games.

Over eighty percent of athletes from Northern Ireland who are competing for Team GB and Team Ireland at this summer’s Olympic Games in Brazil have received funding from the Mary Peters Trust.

The sports charity has financially supported 25 of the 30 athletes from across the province taking part at the Games.

Among the Team GB athletes to receive funding, are rowers Alan Campbell, Richard Chambers and Peter Chambers, hockey players Ian Sloan and Iain Lewers and archer Patrick Huston.

Team Ireland boxers Michael Conlan, Paddy Barnes and Steven Donnelly and six members of the Ireland hockey team, including Peter Caruth, Eugene Magee and Michael Watt are also beneficiaries.

The Mary Peters Trust is also funding half of the athletes from Northern Ireland who are competing at the Paralympic Games. They include triple gold Paralympic runner Michael McKillop who is representing Team Ireland and Team GB’s gold medal winning Paralympic swimmer Bethany Firth.

Dame Mary Peters CH. DBE said: “The Trust is committed to furthering the development of young sportsmen and women throughout Northern Ireland and opening up as many opportunities to further their sporting careers.

“We are delighted to see so many athletes from Northern Ireland competing at this year’s Games.

“Competing professionally for many athletes wouldn’t be possible without the financial aid and support they receive through the Trust. We are delighted that the Mary Peters Trust is able to reward these athletes for their achievements and help them to reach their full potential.

“Good luck to all athletes in Rio, we are very proud of you.”

Archer Patrick Huston has received funding from the Mary Peters Trust. He said: “I’ve had success at World Junior level but competing against the world’s best at the Olympics requires even more time and dedication. Funding from the Mary Peters Trust has helped me train full time and have access to some of the best coaching and facilities in the world.

“My dream is to return home from Brazil with a medal and if I do, I know a part of that success will be down to the support from the Mary Peters Trust.”

The Mary Peters Trust, has launched a campaign, titled ‘Mary’s Race to a Million’, which aims to raise a million pounds so the charity can continue to financially support young sportsmen and women across Northern Ireland, for years to come.

Over the past four decades, the Mary Peters Trust has supported thousands of athletes, both able bodied and disabled, to help realise their sporting dreams.

Dame Mary, who famously won Pentathlon gold at the Munich 1972 Games, added: “Sport has given so much throughout my life but my dream now is to see the stars of tomorrow realise their ambitions. Many young athletes dream of sporting greatness but few achieve it! And that’s why we started Mary’s Race to a Million. I want to know that long after I’m gone, the Trust will continue to fund the sporting generations of tomorrow.

“The Olympics provide the ultimate stage for the athletes of today. We believe the Games will inspire the athletes of tomorrow and when they take that journey, we will be there to support them every step of the way.”

Over the next three years, The Mary Peters Trust will be running a variety of fundraising campaigns aimed at getting people across Northern Ireland involved.

The Mary Peters Trust has funded 25 athletes representing Team GB & NI and Team Ireland at the Olympic Games.

Team GB:

1. Patrick Huston - Archery

2. Alan Campbell - Rowing

3. Richard Chambers - Rowing

4. Peter Chambers - Rowing

5. Mark Gleghorne - Hockey

6. Ian Sloan - Hockey

7. Iain Lewers - Hockey

Team Ireland:

1. Ciara Mageean - Athletics

2. Paul Pollock - Athletics

3. Paddy Barnes - Boxing

4. Michael Conlan - Boxing

5. Brendan Irvine - Boxing

6. Steven Donnelly - Boxing

7. Peter Caruth - Hockey

8. John Jackson - Hockey

9. Eugene Magee - Hockey

10. Michael Watt - Hockey

11. Tim Cockram - Hockey

12. Michael Robson - Hockey

13. Ryan Seaton - Sailing

14. Matt McGovern - Sailing

15. Chloe Magee - Badminton

16. Aileen Reid - Triathlon

17. Stephanie Meadow - Golf

18. Leona Maguire - Golf

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