18 Oct 2012

Christchurch to get new athletes' training complex

8:30 pm on 18 October 2012

A high-performance sports centre is to replace Christchurch's quake-damaged QEII Park.

The Government has announced it will fund the $3.5 million complex, which will be built on city council land at the Jellie-Park Recreation and Sports Centre.

The centre, which will include a gymnasium, an indoor running area, physiotherapy and medical consulting rooms and a netball court, is expected to be open in March.

It will not have an outdoor athletics track, as QEII did, and Athletics New Zealand says it is looking at other options to cater for its top track and field sportspeople in the region.

Roly Chrighton, who coaches paralympic swimmer Sophie Pascoe, says it also lacks an indoor 50-metre pool, which is needed for training in the winter.

Sport New Zealand chief executive Peter Miskimmin says the facility is the best that can be offered during a tough time.

He says the Government is enhancing the training and competition environment so that athletes are well prepared to compete and win on the world stage.