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New deal secures British Biathlon’s future

The British Biathlon Union has announced a four-year sponsorship agreement with Birmingham-based outsourced medical support supplier Aspen Healthcare Solutions – a deal the organisation said will secure its survival.

The agreement will be worth a minimum of £250,000 (€320,700/$410,500) to the BBU – money that looks set to ease the concerns of the governing body, which had faced the prospect of ceasing to function at the end of the current biathlon season in April due to lack of funding.

AHS’s provision surpasses the £200,000 figure that was outlined as a benchmark for the BBU’s survival beyond the Sochi 2014 Olympic Games. All but one of the GB senior team are drawn from the military but their participation in the sport’s flagship Olympic, World Cup and World Championship events was thrown into doubt after the British Army elected to cut its contribution three months ago.

“This is a most encouraging and generous development,” BBU chairman André Oszmann said. “Just three months ago it really did look as though Sochi would be the last Olympics for our biathletes. Now we have a real chance to develop the sport in the UK and, together with AHS, are already looking forward to the 2018 winter Olympics in PyeongChang, Korea.”

Lee Jackson and Amanda Lightfoot are set to represent Great Britain in biathlon at Sochi 2014.