A new sailing discipline, mixed two-person keelboat offshore, has been added to the programme of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, following ratification at the annual general meeting of World Sailing, the sport’s international federation, at the weekend.
The new discipline replaces the existing mixed one-person dinghy event after what World Sailing described as “a lengthy debate.” A total of 29 Council members voted in favour of the new discipline, with nine against and two abstentions.
A subsequent attempt to reinstate the mixed one-person dinghy event was defeated, meaning that the confirmed slate of sailing events for Paris 2024 is:
• Men’s windsurfer - RS:X*
• Women’s windsurfer - RS:X*
• Men’s one-person dinghy - Laser*
• Women’s one-person dinghy - Laser Radial*
• Mixed kite - TBC
• Mixed two-person dinghy – TBC
• Women’s skiff - 49erFX
• Men’s skiff - 49er
• Mixed two-person multihull - Nacra 17
• Mixed two-person keelboat offshore - TBC
(*subject to separate equipment re-evaluation)
In June, Kim Andersen, president of World Sailing (pictured), told Sportcal that it had faced no challenges to its legitimacy as the world governing body for kitesurfing, which it is introducing at the Olympics for the first time at Paris 2024.
It was anticipated that the decision could be challenged by the International Federation of Kitesports Organisations. However, Andersen denied that World Sailing was facing overt opposition to the move, saying: “There is no challenge that I know of. There is noise but that’s what we’re seeing in other sports, like paddleboard. There are always sports factions developing their own type of sport and promoting it as legitimate. If there’s a challenge we have to deal with it, but the legitimacy of what we’re doing is 100 per cent within our rules and regulations.”
Kitesurfing was slated to make its Olympics debut in Rio in 2016, but a controversial decision by World Sailing’s council in 2012 to replace windsurfing with kitesurfing was quickly reversed.