March 19 - Former top rower Sarah Winckless has been appointed Chef de Mission for Team GB at the 2014 Nanjing Summer Youth Olympic Games,
Winckless, chair of the British Olympic Association's (BOA) Athletes' Commission, is set to lead around 60 British athletes aged between 14 and 18 at the second edition of the Games, due to take place from August 16 to 28.
The 40-year-old has competed at three Olympic Games, winning bronze in the women's double sculls event with Elise Laverick at Athens 2004, while also claiming two world titles as part of the British quad sculls team in 2005 and 2006.
Winckless was the director of the Team GB Ambition Programme at London 2012, which involved working with aspiring Olympians and their coaches by providing a practical insight into the unique aspects of the Games environment.
"I am thrilled to have been given the privilege to lead Team GB at the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing this summer," said Winckless.
"Having worked with young athletes through the Team GB Ambition Programme for London 2012 I saw first-hand how important a practical insight into the unique aspects of the Olympic Games environment is.
"The Youth Olympic Games offer our talented young athletes a fantastic platform to gain first-hand experience of competing in an Olympic Games environment along with learning more about Olympic values, the benefits of sport for a healthy lifestyle and the social values sport can deliver.
"I am sure that Nanjing will be instrumental to their development as aspiring Olympians both on and off the field of play."
Winckless will now join Chefs de Mission from other National Olympic Committees (NOCs) at a meeting in Nanjing later this month where they will learn how the Games will be run and what progress the Organising Committee has made with their preparation.
Venue tours will also take place in all the facilities that will host the 28 sports along with the Culture and Education Programme (CEP) which is run as part of the Youth Olympics.
"I am delighted that Sarah will lead Team GB to the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing," said BOA chief executive Bill Sweeney.
"As three-time Olympian and our BOA Athlete chair, Sarah understands the needs of our athletes at all stages of their Olympic journey.
"Her work on the Team GB Ambition Programme for London 2012 gave her an insight into the value of an introduction to the Olympic environment and I think this will prove to be invaluable to our athletes that will compete in Nanjing."
British athletes are set to compete in 20 of the 28 sports at Nanjing 2014 and will be looking to build on their medal haul from the inaugural Games in Singapore in 2010 where Team GB won a total of 13 medals, including golds for London 2012 taekwondo champion Jade Jones, as well rowers Fiona Gammond and Georgia Howard-Merrill, gymnast Sam Oldham, showjumper Carian Scudamore and Oliver Golding in tennis.
The Team GB squad for the Games is due to announced in early July.
Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]
December 2012: Winckless holds off four London 2012 competitors to retain post as chair of BOA Athletes' Commission
December 2010: Peak performance from Winckless as she conquers Kilimanjaro to raise awareness of Huntington's
June 2010: Fearless Winckless set to continue her incredible journey in new BOA role
June 2010: Former rower appointed head of new BOA Athletes' Commission