US-backed initiative for new Olympic events moves forward
BARCELONA, Spain – A U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA) proposal has led to a host of new events being accepted by the International Ski Federation for presentation to the International Olympic Committee. The USSA initiative added big air and team snowboardcross to the list that also includes an alpine team event, dual moguls, a mixed gender ski jumping event and others. The proposal had multi-national support.
“It’s vital that we keep our sports fresh and relevant to youth. We clearly saw the global benefits with the additional new events in Sochi,” said USSA President and CEO Tiger Shaw. “This is yet another step to keep the Olympics in sync with what excites kids in sport today and to build the brand of FIS.”
FIS President Gian Franco Kasper told FIS Congress delegates that the aggregated list of new events would be presented to the IOC after the finalization of new IOC President Thomas Bach’s “Agenda 2020,” his Olympic roadmap for the future, which is expected to be finalized later this year.
Big air snowboarding has been a part of the FIS World Championships since 2003 and one of the premier events at X Games for many years. Snowboardcross has been one of the most popular Olympic events since 2006, and team snowboardcross has been a regular part of the FIS World Cup and Sprint U.S. Grand Prix.
“America has long been the epicenter of action sports. We’ve continually taken a leadership position in pushing new events in the past with SBX, slopestyle and the new freeskiing events,” said USSA Snowboarding and Freeskiing Program Director Jeremy Forster. “We have strong multi-national support for this initiative and are optimistic that FIS and IOC will work together to get these events onto the program for 2018.”
Action sports events like halfpipe, slopestyle, big air and snowboardcross are among the most popular with youth and have played a vital role in driving broadcast viewership worldwide.
Release courtesy of USSA