You may remember me talking about this a while ago back when the IOC had decided on adding ski halfpipe to the Winter Olympics. Well after months and months of delay they have finally made a decision and it's one that benefits the ski world - slopestyle is to be added to the bill at Sochi 2014! Here's the official word:
The IOC confirmed today the inclusion of ski slopestyle (men and women), snowboard slopestyle (men and women) and snowboard parallel special slalom (men and women) on the sports programme of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi.
The decision was taken by the IOC Executive Board (EB) ahead of the 123rd IOC Session in Durban, South Africa, and follows the inclusion in April of ski halfpipe (men and women), women’s ski jumping, biathlon mixed relay, figure skating team event and luge team relay.
“We are very pleased with the addition of ski and snowboard slopestyle and snowboard special slalom in the Olympic Winter Games programme," said IOC President Jacques Rogge. “Such events provide great entertainment for the spectators and add further youthful appeal to our already action-packed lineup of Olympic winter sports. We look forward to welcoming all the athletes to Sochi in 2014."
The Olympic Programme Commission (OPC) initially proposed the inclusion of the events to the 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 last winter. The decision was also based on an operational feasibility study undertaken by the organisers of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Games.
With all the competitions going on these days is this just a sign of the IOC jumping onto something that's currently popular? I'm all for the addition of slopestyle and halfpipe into the Winter Olympics so long as it doesn't affect any other competition that usually runs at that time. It's a great way of pushing the sport out to the public (more than it already is) so that's a plus but what are your thoughts? All I know is that I'll be rooting for James Woods to claim a medal!