Based on number of sports , number of athletes , male and female ratio, Team Ireland are given an allocation for performance staff, ie coaches, and medical support staff.
A percentage of the accreditations awarded to Team Ireland for the Beijing Games, will now be rotational, ie a coach working with an athlete in one sport can , when their athlete has finished competition, have his accreditation transfered to a coach whose athlete is still to compete.
The outbound coach must therefore leave the Village to ensure that accreditatiions can be maximised for other sports.
To highlight the point Patsy McGonagle , Team Manger of the Olympic Track and Field athletes, said,
“Accreditation at the Olympics is very different to World or European Championships, where numbers of support staff are not limited” He added ” in Beijing , we will have 3 coaches working with our athletes initially and we will then transfer their accreditations to 3 new coaches once their athletes have finished competition.
Effectively we have twice as many coaches than normal, and we will be able to have Dr Bill Cuddihy and Nessa Smyth in week 2 of the Games, working alongside a very experienced OCI medical team”
Dermot Henihan , Chef de Mission, said that “in Athens 35 performance staff supported the Irish Team, that number in Beijing has reached 50, its a real performance bonus for our athletes.
The OCI have only taken 5 accreditations for their HQ, myself , Deputy Chef, CEO Stephen Martin, Sports Director Martin Burke, and its also manditory to have a Press attache Jack McGouran.The others have gone to support our athletes.”