World Sailing is to campaign for sailing to be reinstated in the Paralympic Games in Los Angeles (USA) in 2028.
Having lost sailing from the Paralympic Games back in 2015 because the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) claimed it could not fulfil their minimum criteria for worldwide reach . . . World Sailing only really seemed to get interested when it became a Presidential election factor in 2020.
At that time, the existing World Sailing President, Kim Andersen, and his three challengers – China’s Quanhai Li, Uruguay’s Scott Perry and Spain’s Gerardo Seeliger, all pledged to get sailing back into the Paralympic Games.
“It is a critical task of World Sailing to reinstate Parasailing in the Paralympics,” Li said.
Now World Sailing, under Quanhai Li, has set out a set of strategic priorities to support the growth of the sport by 2023:
- Increase worldwide participation to 45 nations on 6 continents.
- Increase youth participation (below the age of 30) to 20% of total athletes.
- Grow the number of female participants to 30% and, ultimately, to achieve gender parity.
“We know that other major sports looking for reinstatement are already drawing up their bid plans,” said David Graham, CEO of World Sailing.
“We know that IPC President, Andrew Parsons, has already publicly declared that the IPC will be looking at potential ‘new sports’ following the successful introduction of new, youth-focused sports at Tokyo 2020. We are on track to achieve our strategic priorities by 2023 and we are taking nothing for granted.”
At the recent Hansa World Championships 181 Para sailors representing 23 nations from 6 continents including Asia and Africa, took part.
With World Sailing still not fully recovered from the financial abyss, it will need a massive effort to overcome the likely concentration on new sports by the International Paralympic Committee, to get sailing back for Los Angeles (USA) in 2028.