World Sailing has just five days – until 23 April – to come up with a replacement event for the Mixed Offshore Event.
Because they messed with the existing ten event sailing programme to squeeze in a couple of what were believed to be more media friendly events – a kite relay and an offshore event – they are now having to appeal to anyone who can come up with another media friendly event, to get in touch ASAP.
Apparently they were unable to convince the IOC to accept kite boarding events as a seperate event(s) as cycling (Mountain Biking and BMX racing – 6 events) and skiing (Snowboarding and Freestyle – 20 events) did well retaining their original events.
It would seem that everything is back on the table.
As World Sailing CEO, David Graham commented, “This is not an official decision from the IOC, but rather a direction of travel and assistance to help World Sailing secure our 10th medal at Paris 2024, should the Offshore event not be endorsed by the IOC Executive Board in early June.”
The Finn and Europe classes have jumped in with their multi-class event, which seems to tick the six IOC boxes.
Although I suspect it would only go forward with some very gritted teeth in World Sailing Tower after the way the Finn was sacrificed on the alter of progress, but then ‘arrogance and self-awarness, seldom go hand in hand’.**
OK, it has not had a world championship but that can quickly be rustled-up, as the 470 did earlier this year with their first mixed world championship to qualify them for Paris 2024.
Another route to the Games could be via dinghy match racing, even more of a stretch but this is entertainment . . . the show must go on.
It would have to be a mixed two person crew to keep the numbers down, and use a supplied two-person dinghy.
And if all else fails then the match racing could just use the competitors nominated from among those already their to represent thier country, and with the bonus of winning a possible second medal . . . a win, win solution!
Any late submission must be in the respect of the replacement event only (and not any associated Regulatory changes) and the alternative event proposal must adhere to criteria framework provided by the IOC which is outlined below:
1. Align with Olympic Agenda 2020+5, including relevance to the youth, innovation, universality and participation of the best athletes
2. Keep full gender equality on both number of events and athlete quotas (e.g. alternative mixed-gender events or split of currently approved mixed events into men’s and women’s events)
3. Prioritise universality and maximise the accessibility of the sport
4. Should have been previously tested at the respective World Championships organised by World Sailing
5. Should not cause an increase of the overall cost and complexity for the Paris 2024 Organising Committee, National Olympic Committees and/or National Federations, specifically in the direct comparison with the sailing programme, as a whole, in Tokyo 2020
6. Use of existing venues/Fields of Play
Late Submissions will be published on the World Sailing website on 30 April 2021.
** M . . . Casino Royale