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  • Federation Focus: World Sailing Strategy for Paralympics Return


    (ATR) World Sailing targets a successful bid for inclusion in the 2028 Paralympics in Los Angeles as part of its new strategy for para sailing.

    Para sailing at Rio 2016 (Getty Images)
    Sailing failed to make the cut for either the Tokyo 2020 or Paris 2024 Paralympics.

    The federation on Friday announced a key area of focus will be “to increase inclusion of Para sailing in Regional Games and competitions - pinnacle events for the emerging and developing MNAs [Member National Authorities]. World Sailing is engaging with the organisers of Regional Para Games to seek opportunities for sailing to be part of the programme of these important multi-sport events to showcase the sport. “

    A “more streamlined and cost effective schedule” will be introduced in 2020 aimed at giving sailors the opportunity to gain ranking points for participation in local, regional and international events for the years in between the quadrennial Combined Sailing World Championships.

    It was decided last year that the 2022 Combined Sailing World Championships would include all the Para Sailing classes as well as the 10 Olympic disciplines.

    The federation says that World Sailing’s board of directors and the Para World Sailing Committee should complete the updating of the Para Sailing Strategic Plan by November, in time for the federation’s Annual General Meeting.

    The AGM in Dubai in 2020 will feature a presidential election. Gerardo Seeliger of Spain announced his candidacy and explained why he was running against incumbent Kim Andersen of Denmark in an open letter addressed to all Finn sailors.

    “As a passionate and active competitor, I consider this encouragement from you and many sailors from the boat park as a true honour and a sign of sailor's trust to face with success the significant challenges ahead,” Seeliger said in the letter.

    Bizarre Finish at Triathlon Test Event in Tokyo

    The winners of a 2019 World Triathlon Olympic qualification event in Tokyo were disqualified for causing a deliberate tie.

    Disqualified for holding hands (ITU YouTube)
    Jessica Learmonth and Georgia Taylor-Brown, both of Great Britain, crossed the finish line hand-in-hand well ahead of everyone else on Thursday.

    But the International Triathlon Union rules call for disqualifying “athletes who finish in a contrived tie situation, where no effort to separate their finish times has been made”.

    Flora Duffy of Bermuda was awarded the gold medal, with Alice Betto of Italy taking silver and Britain’s Vicky Holland bronze.

    Betto’s finish earned her a place at the Olympic Games. Also qualifying for Tokyo 2020 were Summer Rappaport of the USA, who finished fifth, and Germany’s Laura Lindemann, who was sixth. Lisa Perterer also booked her place as the highest-finishing Austrian.

    Learmonth and Taylor-Brown did not miss out on Olympic qualification despite their disqualification because the running part of the race was shortened from 10km to 5km due to poor weather conditions. British qualification requires a race with the Olympic distance of 10km.

    The triathlon test events run through Sunday at Tokyo’s Odaiba Marine Park.

    AIBA Men's World Championships Still On

    The media accreditation process for the AIBA Men’s World Championships opened on Friday, 22 days before the start of the event in Ekaterinburg, Russia.

    The tournament, which runs from Sept. 7-21, has lost much of its luster since it is no longer an Olympic qualifying event for Tokyo 2020.

    The IOC’s unprecedented sanctions against the boxing federation handed out in June included a ban on AIBA from any involvement in the Tokyo Olympics. The IOC has taken over the organization of the sport for next summer’s Games.

    AIBA’s precarious financial situation means the Russian Boxing Federation is footing the bill for both the men’s and the women’s world championships, which are scheduled for October 3-13 in Ulan Ude, Russia.

    Birmingham 2022 Adds Three Sports

    Beach volleyball will remain in the Commonwealth Games sports program for Birmingham 2022.

    The 71 Commonwealth Games Associations (CGAs) also approved women’s Twenty20 cricket and para table tennis for inclusion.

    Beach volleyball made a successful debut at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games, with every session selling out during the seven days of competition.

    “The FIVB is honoured that beach volleyball has once again been selected for the Commonwealth Games,” FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F° said in a statement following Tuesday’s announcement.

    “Volleyball is an inclusive sport that is enjoyed all over the commonwealth by people of all abilities and backgrounds. As a sports leader in gender equality, we are extremely proud to be part of Birmingham 2022, an event which is set to have the biggest female and para sports programmes in history.”

    Written by Gerard Farek

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