Surfing wants cut of Olympic Games revenue
Surfing should be eligible for a cut of Olympic Games revenues distributed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), after being picked for the 2024 Paris Olympics following its debut at the Tokyo Games next year, according to Reuters.
The President of the International Surfing Association (ISA) Fernando Aguerre says while the sport is not eligible for any money distributed to the 28 core sports by the IOC after Tokyo, its presence in Paris will mean it’s no longer a one-Games sport.
“We get nothing for Tokyo from the revenue sharing of the Games,” Aguerre told Reuters in an interview. “But we need to have that discussion now, to have a review. Because we are not a sport of one Games.”
Surfing, sports climbing, skateboarding, karate, baseball and softball are part of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, having been proposed by the Japanese hosts.
As such they are not part of the revenue sharing plan of the IOC for the permanent 28 sports, divided into five groups, with the top sports like athletics and gymnastics receiving about $50 million.
That, Aguerre says, should change now that surfing will be in Paris and likely also in the Los Angeles 2028 Games.
“We had accepted that for Tokyo. But now it is a different situation with likely three Games,” he says.
“All indications are that it could be part of LA 2028. LA is the epicentre of modern day surfing. With the likelihood of three Games… surfing will be a permanent Olympic sport. We are not a one-night stand.
“We are a small federation, we don’t charge entry fees at events because the beach is open. Oceans are free,” he adds.
The ISA receives some funds from the IOC for development programmes.
“There has to be a discussion so that surfing is rated as a permanent sport. Just look at the value we will bring to the Games. We must have that discussion with the IOC,” Aguerre continues.
With the IOC eager to rejuvenate the Olympics to attract a younger audience, surfing with its rapidly growing popularity is expected to be among the highlights in Tokyo.
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