Olympic Programme Commission Confirmed for Canoeing
The International Canoe Federation (ICF) Board of Directors Meeting was held in Lausanne, Switzerland from the 29-30 March.
José Perurena, ICF President and International Olympic Committee (IOC) Member, initiated a Canoeing Olympic Programme Commission to ensure that the ICF improves the sport’s ranking according to the IOC’s assessment and maintains its existing athlete, medal and event quota.
The commission will develop criteria based on the key messages from the IOC for evaluating canoeing’s Olympic Programme; this will be carried out over the next 24 months with an inclusive approach that consults all stakeholders.
The commission comprises of six members, Cecilia Farias (ARG), Mario Santos (POR), Jean-Michel Prono (FRA), Lluis Rabaneda Caselles (ESP), Frank Garner (CAN) and chair, Thomas Konietzko (GER).
They will also assess each canoeing discipline from an Olympic Programme perspective and look to enhance the canoeing Olympic Programme for 2020, 2024 and 2028.
Perurena said, “This commission is important for the future of our sport. It is key that we continue to evolve our entire sport and search for ways to improve.”
Christophe Dubi, IOC Executive Director for the Olympic Games, was also in attendance and presented the future vision for the Games to the ICF Board.
Dubi talked about how sports need to ensure that they remain relevant to modern society, and prioritise sport participation and spectating to support sporting excellence.
He also touched on funding models and developing products (disciplines) with a value proposition, particularly for the current non-Olympic disciplines. In addition, he talked about the value of alternative pathways to the Olympics through other multi-sport Games, for example The World Games.
Continuing with the Olympic theme, Duisburg, Germany was selected as the second canoe sprint Olympic Qualification venue for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
The event is likely to take place in May 2016 in conjunction with the ICF Canoe Sprint World Cup, with the first opportunity to qualify for the Games being at the 2015 ICF Canoe Sprint World Championships in Milan, Italy.
The following ICF World Championship events were also selected after the bidding process was complete.
Montemor-o-Velho in Portugal will host the 2018 ICF Canoe Sprint World Championships, and Plovdiv in Bulgaria, the 2018 ICF Junior and U23 Canoe Sprint World Championships.
The 2017 ICF Junior and U23 Canoe Slalom World Championships winning bid came from Cunovo, Slovakia.
The 2018 Canoe Marathon World Championships will head to Prado-vila Verde, Portugal.
Canoe Polo is set for Welland, Canada in 2018, the same venue that was used for the 2013 ICF Canoe Sprint Junior and U23 World Championships.
Finally, Tahiti will host its first ICF World Championship event, the 2015 Ocean Racing Championships.
It was also confirmed that there will be an increase to six ICF Canoe Slalom World Cups in 2016.
The next Board Meeting will be held later this year in conjunction with the 2014 ICF Congress that runs from 3-9 November in Warsaw, Poland.