Well, here we go ... for gold. It’s very close to locked in – skateboarding will be included in the Olympic Games for the first time, starting in Tokyo in 2020.
The move just needs the official sign-off from the International Olympic Committee, which is set to happen this year before the opening ceremony of the Rio Games.
Skateboarding, surfing, karate, sports climbing, and baseball/softball are the five new 'sports' that are “almost certainly” going to be added to the Tokyo Games, “in a bid by the Olympic movement to appeal to youth in what it is terming an ‘urban’ sports push”, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
The International Olympic Committee describes the move as “the most comprehensive evolution of the Olympic program in modern history”, and will determine exactly how each sport will run, in terms of what disciplines remain medal events, around mid-next year.
The five new sports will see 18 events and 474 new athletes added to the Tokyo Games.
“They represent a combination of well-established and emerging sports with significant popularity in Japan and beyond,” the IOC said of the new additions.
“They include team sports and individual sports; indoor sports and outdoor sports; and ‘urban’ sports with a strong appeal to youth.
“The package promotes gender equality, with each of the five sports having equal numbers of teams for men and women, while also focusing on innovative and exciting sports for Japan and the wider international community.”
Regardless of how this makes you feel, you’ve got to admit that this will be entertaining. Who will look the best in their matching national outfits? Who will fail the drug tests? Who will care? All we can do is wait and see.
Illustration by Pigeonboy.