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UK Sport to significantly cut Winter Olympic funding for Beijing 2022

Billy Morgan, Lizzy Yarnold, Laura Deas and Izzy Atkin all contributed to Team GB's record-breaking Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang. Steve Bardens/Getty Images

UK Sport will cut its Winter Olympic funding by almost £9 million despite achieving a record-breaking medal haul at Pyeonchang 2018.

Although sports like skeleton will receive an increase in funding, others such as bobsleigh, figure skating and short track have been cut entirely.

UK Sport's investment of just under £24m will cover the next Winter Olympic cycle, up until the 2022 games in Beijing.

The announcement follows a record-breaking Winter Olympics for Team GB as they won five medals in South Korea, eclipsing their previous best of four set in 1924 and 2014.

UK Sport invested over £32m -- shared across eight winter Olympic and Paralympic sports -- ahead of the 2018 games, more than double the £14m spent ahead of Sochi 2014.

This included £5m on bobsleigh, £4.8m on short track and more than £6.5m on skeleton -- the most spent on any winter sport.

But it was in the skeleton where Team GB were most successful, as Lizzy Yarnold and Laura Dees claimed gold and bronze respectively in the women's event and Dom Parsons took bronze in the men's.

Team GB also won their first ever skiing medal, with Izzy Atkin winning bronze in the women's slopestyle, while Billy Morgan added another bronze on the snow in the men's snowboard Big Air.

However, Team GB failed to win any medals in the bobsleigh or short track and it seems those sports have paid the price for falling short of their medal targets.

"Today marks an important step on the path to Beijing 2022 as we target further inspirational success at the Winter Games," UK Sport CEO Liz Nicholl said.

"While UK Sport would like to be able to invest in every Olympic and Paralympic sport our role is to prioritise within agreed resources in order to protect and enhance the medal potential within the system.

"We believe these strategic investments will deliver medal winning success to inspire the nation once again in Beijing in 2022."

UK Sport believes the medal possibilities for the Beijing Games currently sits between five and 12 Olympic medals.

Based on assessed future medal potential, the main investment will be split into skeleton (up to £7.2m), ski and snowboard (up to £6.75m) and curling (up to £6.35m).

Short-track speed skater Elise Christie, a key medal hopeful in Pyeongchang who just fell short, will have her funding protected, despite an overall cut for the sport.

"As a programme we are gutted to announce that our support from UK Sport has come to an end," the 27-year-old said.

"As a team we will be working hard to figure out our next steps."