SPORTING PASSION: Rockhampton MP and Minister for Sport and Racing Bill Byrne with The Cathedral College students Lara Tucker, Lucy Busby, Jack Wilson and Brooke Tucker, who will be among the local athletes to benefit from an increased travel subsidy.
SPORTING PASSION: Rockhampton MP and Minister for Sport and Racing Bill Byrne with The Cathedral College students Lara Tucker, Lucy Busby, Jack Wilson and Brooke Tucker, who will be among the local athletes to benefit from an increased travel subsidy. Allan Reinikka

Increased travel subsidy keeps young Brooke racing

BROOKE Tucker loves the thrill of racing around the velodrome.

In the three years she's been cycling, the sport has become Brooke's life.

But achieving success on the track comes at a price.

Now, Brooke and her family will get a little more support from the State Government, who yesterday announced increased travel subsidies for young athletes.

Brooke said the changes would help ease the cost when she travelled to Kazakhstan in August for the Junior World Track Championships.

Despite the hours dedicated to improving and the cost of cycling equipment, Brooke said she loved competing in the sport.

"It gives me purpose, it gives me direction and something to aim for," she said.

Rockhampton MP and Minister for Sport and Racing Bill Byrne announced the changes at The Cathedral College and said the Young Athletes Travel Subsidy had provided more than $5 million in support in the past decade.

Previously, athletes could access $200 support over two years. The changes will now mean eligible athletes could access up to $1200 over two years, with $200 for state representation, $400 for national and $600 for international.

Mr Byrne said the existing scheme had already helped 68 Rockhampton-based athletes this year.

He said while the subsidy wouldn't cover the full cost of sport, it would make a big difference to Rockhampton families.

"There are a number of youngsters in Central Queensland who have shown particular talent and who will be able to avail themselves of this support," Mr Byrne said.

"For us as a government, we're well aware of some of the lowering of participation, some of the problems with obesity and lack of activity.

"We want to maximise investment in grass-roots programs in getting young people active."



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