The trend towards so-called extreme sports continues.
At Woodward West Camp, Mike Jacki told me he was very optimistic that skateboard will be added for the 2012 Olympics. The announcement should come October 2007. If anybody knows, it’s Mike Jacki.
BMX is already in for Beijing 2008. (For 2012 BMX Vert may be added in the same venue as Skateboard. And possibly other BMX events.)
Skateboarding is almost certain to make its Olympic debut at the London Games.
Leaders of the Olympic movement are determined to help the sport qualify for the 2012 event in an attempt to broaden the Games’ appeal to younger people.
The chances of skateboarding being included in the Games roster were boosted by the successful introduction of another “youth” sport. Snowboarding made its debut at last year’s Winter Olympics in Turin and provided some of the Games’ most memorable moments and, crucially for the IOC, attracted encouraging TV ratings among 20- to 35-year-olds.
The drive towards a younger audience will continue at the Beijing Games next year with the debut of BMX biking.
This was introduced to the Games by the International Cycling Union, which is on the verge of adopting skateboarding as it is a “wheelbased”-sport. …
Its popularity has grown rapidly and there are now around 13 million devotees worldwide, including 600,000 in Britain. The US continues to dominate the sport and the UK lags behind France and Scandinavian countries, where skateboarding forms part of the school curriculum. …
Skateboarding would be the envy of numerous other sports vying for Olympics status, which can provide a huge boost to grassroots participation and revenues.
Two years ago, rugby and golf both failed in their attempts to become part of the 2012 event. At the same time, the IOC cut baseball and softball from the roster.
The event most likely to be included in London is vert skating, which originated when skateboarders used disused swimming pools. Participants are awarded points for tricks and style.
Skateboarding to make Olympic debut in 2012 | News | This is London
Though Olympic skateboarding looks like a sure thing, the biggest roadblock left are those in skateboarding who feel Olympic inclusion will ruin the sport.
Buzzy Sullivan, Woodward Skate Director, had mixed feelings. He took up skateboard when it was an activity for “outsiders” who did not want to do tradtional competitive sports. Yet finds in 2007 that skateboard is already an accepted mainstream activity. In fact, where he lives, the greatest growth in the sport has come from girls taking up skateboard.
Mark J. Terrill / AP file
Shaun White catches air during skateboard vert practice for X Games Twelve. White is an Olympic medalist in snowboarding and could double up in Olympics if skateboarding is added to the Games.
Rad! Skateboarding could be an Olympic sport