Yup, its happened. Today the IOC has announced surfing as a gold medal sport. After years of negotiations, surfing will be making its debut at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
“Congratulations to ISA President, Fernando Aguerre, and the ISA on their successful bid to have the sport included in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games,” said Paul Speaker, CEO of the World Surf League (WSL).
Kieren Perrow, Commissioner of the World Surf League added, “The WSL has worked tirelessly to provide all of its surfers with opportunities to develop as professional athletes and to expand global participation in the sport of surfing. We’re excited by the IOC’s decision and look forward to what it means for the future of professional surfing.”
“For the sport, being accepted onto the Olympic stage is a great step forward. Surfing continues to grow and seeing it reach the Olympic level is really exciting,” said John John Florence, current WSL #2. “I’m looking forward to the opportunity of representing our country if I’m fortunate enough to make the U.S. team.”
For me personally, i think surfing will fit right in. The competition will run over 2 days and have the whole 2 weeks waiting period to get the right conditions. Our sport will also open up the flood gates to new ideas and different people. But hopefully not overcrowd the line ups! Maybe Kelly Slaters wave pool will play a roll when the games go inland?
“More than anything, I want to see surfers from Europe, Africa, Asia, Central and South America—white, black, brown, yellow, everyone—all right there with the Aussies and Americans. Surfing is an inclusive sport, not exclusive. We will show the world that in 2020,” Fernando says.