The International Olympic Committee (IOC) have confirmed the inclusion of six new events on the programme of the Olympic Winter Games in Sochi in 2014. They are ski half-pipe (men and women), women’s ski jumping, biathlon mixed relay, figure skating team event and luge team relay.
The decision to include the new events was based on a report presented by the Olympic Programme Commission (OPC) to the IOC Executive Board (EB) in Acapulco in October last year. The OPC studied the proposal of the individual International Sports Federations and, at the request of the EB, compiled a detailed analysis of all candidate events at their respective world championships this winter. In addition, the OPC looked at an operational feasibility study conducted by the organisers of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Games.
The key positive factors included whether the changes would increase universality, gender equity and youth appeal, and, in general, add value to the Games. Other considerations included the cost of infrastructure, and the impact on the overall quota and the number of events.
“The inclusion of these events on the Olympic Winter Games programme is sure to be appreciated by athletes and sports fans alike,” said IOC President Jacques Rogge. “These are exciting, entertaining events that perfectly complement the existing events on the sports programme, bring added appeal and increase the number of women participating at the Games. I look forward to watching the athletes compete in these events in Sochi 2014.”
Five other events under consideration — ski slopestyle (men and women), snowboard slopestyle (men and women), and Alpine team parallel competition — are subject to a further feasibility study. A decision on the inclusion of these five events will be made within the coming weeks.