CROSS-COUNTRY OUT OF PARIS 2024 OLYMPIC GAMES. DISAPPOINTMENT IN WORLD ATHLETICS COMMUNITY.
CROSS-COUNTRY OUT OF PARIS 2024 OLYMPIC GAMES. Disappointment in World Athletics. The Cross-country discipline is today the Olympic spearhead of all Off-Road Athletics, the one developed on natural terrain. This group also covers mountain races, with its four current official modalities. from the Uphill Mountain Race (Vertical) to the Ultras.
No wonder, therefore, that the World Athletics has made an official note confirming its dissapointment by having the cross-country being left out of the Olympic program in Paris 2024. Let’s go with the detail of the news and its future implications for mountain racing.
Photo: Atapuerca Cross Country
CROSS-COUNTRY OUT OF PARIS 2024 OLYMPIC GAMES
OFF-ROAD IN ATHLETICS: From Cross-Country to mountain racing. Today, cross-country can be seen as the head of all athletics disciplines in the natural terrain. It was the test of fire for inclusion in the Olympic program. For the World Athletics, the OFF-ROAD discipline group covers the traditional Cross. And also, among others, the four events that make up today the “Mountain & Trail Running World Championship”. This is: The vertical race (Uphill Mountain Race WMRA), the classic mountain race (Classic Mountain Race WMRA) the Trail M (IAU) and the ultra (IAU).
Therefore, the future of mountain racing within Olympics is a challenge: If you keep the principle that you can’t add more events without deleting others, right now the Cross would be the first in the list. Given WA’s clear interest in the issue, it seems clear that it will be retried for Los Angeles 2028. Nor can it be ruled out that, given the growing tug of mountain racing around the world, a single event to be included in the Olympic program in the near future is raised. In that case, perhaps the Classic Mountain Race WMRA distance could be the easiest to fit within the logistical challenge of the Olympic television grid.
CROSS-COUNTRY, OUT OF PARIS 2024
According to Factorrunning, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced yesterday the adoption of the Paris 2024 programme by the Executive Board. 41 applications were submitted for new tests of various sports, but all were rejected.
The IOC stated that limiting the total number of events is a key element in slowing the growth of the Olympic programme, as well as additional costs. as it is right now, it already involves a total quota of 10,500 athletes, considerably less than the expected 11,091 competitors, with a stake of exactly 50% of men and women.
The final programme will consist of a total of 329 events to be presented in Paris 2024. It is a first reduction from the 339 in Tokyo 2020. The World Athletics Association’s proposal to include cross in the Olympic program for the first time since Paris 1924 was rejected. The racewalking program was also considered, with the 50-kilometre race cut for men in order to replace it with mixed competition.
As stated by the World Athletics: “Cross country is an exciting and fast growing sport around the world so we are clearly disappointed it will not feature at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, even more so given the heritage of cross country in France at the Paris 1924 Olympic Games. However, we have developed what we believe is a really exciting mixed relay product and have been encouraged by the commitment from the IOC that they will continue to work with us to realise our vision of seeing cross country in a future Olympic Games. Regarding the long race walk, we will consult with our athletes and Competition Commission to develop an event that is able to feature both men and women. The IOC has suggested this could be any mixed gender event using any current venue, however we are only considering a mixed gender race walk event.”
Photo: Atapuerca Cross Country
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