The Palaszczuk Government’s Youfor2032 Olympic and Paralympic athlete talent search begins in under two weeks with young North Queenslanders the first to sample the Queensland Academy of Sport’s (QAS) testing program.
Sport Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said applications for Australia’s largest ever athlete talent identification program would open on 12 April.
“It’s exciting to be in Townsville with experts from the QAS as the countdown of the last days to the opening of nominations for Youfor2032 begins,” Mr Hinchliffe said.
“Today, we’ve given students from Townsville Grammar School a small taste of what the Youfor2032 athlete testing program might involve.
“We’ve tried out students in Townsville on their sprint and vertical leap abilities.
“The QAS has also walked students through the commitment and determination young North Queenslanders will need to harness to go for gold in 2032.
“Initially the QAS will reach out to 50,000 Queenslanders before talent scouts select 20,000 aspirants for thorough testing of speed, endurance, agility, resilience, cognitive ability and mindset.
“Regional Queensland has a great history of producing champions including Olympic gold medallists Natalie Cook and Anna Meares.
“We want North Queenslanders to be able to cheer on the region’s own home-grown medal hopes in 2032.
“Youfor2032 and the QAS could provide practical support for Townsville’s potential champions of tomorrow.”
Member for Thuringowa Aaron Harper said there was so many talented sportspeople in the Townsville region.
“Even just recently I caught up with Charli Cox who is an incredibly talented runner and now holds a Queensland record,” Mr Harper said.
“I’d encourage people like Charlie and our other talented athletes to give YouFor2032 a go.”
Member for Townsville Scott Stewart said Townsville had world class facilities for aspiring Olympians.
“We have facilities like Queensland Country Bank Stadium, which is earmarked for 2032 Olympic football preliminaries, Townsville Sports Reserve and the velodrome,” Mr Stewart said.
“There is plenty of opportunity for young North Queenslanders to pursue their Olympic and Paralympic dreams, and Youfor2032 can help find our best prospects.”
Member for Mundingburra Les Walker said the Palaszczuk Government had doubled QAS funding to help maximise podium-ready Queenslanders for the 2032 Games.
“Whether you’re from Townsville, Charters Towers, Bowen, Ingham or Ayr, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to accelerate your potential,” Mr Walker said.
“Not every Olympic contender will be found by Youfor2032 and not everyone who applies for Youfor2032 will make the program or become an elite athlete, but it’s worth a shot.”
The QAS will target a range of Summer and Winter Olympic and Paralympic sports.
QAS Chief Executive Chelsea Warr said Youfor2032 would focus on the 13-23 age group for the Olympics and 13–30-year age group for the Paralympics.
“We will closely study the applicants’ sporting backgrounds and their sporting results, while the second phase of testing becomes more sport-specific, aiming to match athlete profiles to specific sports,” said Ms Warr.
“QAS will wrap its world class expertise and support around 400 selected athletes in systematic development programs to ensure their potential is accelerated on the runway towards Brisbane 2032.
“We are not only on the lookout for talented athletes, but also 2032 talented coaches, which is why the QAS, in partnership with the Australian Institute of Sport, has already selected 11 aspiring coaches.
“Nine aspiring coaches are female and all will be part of a national first 2032 Elite Coach Scholarship Program to support them on their own development journey to be world-class.”
QAS funding has been doubled by Palaszczuk Government to $29 million per year annum over the first two years of the 10-year runway to 2032.
Applications for the Youfor2032 program will open on 12 April 2022, with the first phase of testing in Toowoomba next month and North and Far North Queensland in June and July.
Talent identification testing will be run in partnership with National and State Sporting organisations, schools, universities and school sport districts.