Shillong, July 4 : The Meghalaya government has launched a new program to develop Olympic athletes. The Super Elite Program will train 12 high-potential athletes with international coaches and a dedicated development program. The program is part of the government’s vision to develop Olympic medalists by 2032.

The project under the STAR Program notified by the Government of Meghalaya is a part of the Chief Minister’s vision to develop Olympic athletes by 2032. With the development of new infrastructure, and the various initiatives under the Department, the objective is to begin grooming high potential athletes from now to achieve the final goal of Olympic medals.

These athletes have been selected through a yearlong process, which has been implemented by the Meghalaya State Olympic Association under the supervision of Edge10, an Australian company led by Mr. Ian Campbell, a reputed Olympian.

Using physical parameter testing, over 14,500 athletes across Meghalaya were tested in two phases with the technology provided by Edge10. The phase 1 athletes (4,500 in number) were shortlisted to participate in an Elite Pathway Program, which involves a year-round intervention process of app-based training, and quarterly training camps conducted by Mr. Campbell. From this group, the 9 athletes (6 athletics, two weightlifting, and one karate athlete) have been shortlisted, while the rest will continue under the Elite Pathway Program.

As the remaining 10,000 athletes from Phase 2 are shortlisted through the same mechanism, it is expected that 3 more athletes will be a part of the Super Elite Program, forming a total of 12 athletes.

These athletes, both boys and girls from the Garo and Khasi regions of the State, will be under the direct care of the MSOA and the Department, where their schooling, stay/food, and training will be taken care of. Mr. Campbell will continue to oversee their performance over the 3 years of the program, facilitated by sport specific expert coaches and an Analytics team. The athletes will be based in Shillong and will further participate in events, gradually aspiring towards international events.