LA 2024 pledged Friday to sustain the spirit of fresh thinking and innovation of the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) Agenda 2020 reforms by highlighting Southern California’s history of pioneering modern sports geared two a youth audience.
Two of the sports, skateboarding and surfing, were named on the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee’s shortlist of additions to the Olympic program earlier this week.
Senior LA 2024 representatives are travelling to the FIVB’s Beach Volleyball World Tour Finals in Fort Lauderdale, Florida this weekend to observe and absorb operational best practices from an Olympic program mainstay with its roots on Santa Monica beach.
All five sports on Tokyo 2020’s shortlist are popular across California.
LA 2024 Chairman Casey Wasserman said, ” Los Angeles and Southern California are blessed with beautiful beaches, so the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Finals is an ideal opportunity for us to see how we can best use our natural assets. Beach volleyball is part of Southern California’s history ad healthy outdoor lifestyle, and the proposed new 2020 sports of surfing, skateboarding and sport climbing also fit in to this category. It goes without saying that baseball/softball and karate are extremely popular sports here too.
“Los Angeles and Southern California have always been at the forefront of innovation in sport. Beach volleyball has its roots in Santa Monica, where the inaugural beach volleyball championships were first staged. And beach volleyball was introduced as an Olympic discipline at the last U.S. Summer Games in Atlanta in 1996.
“We recognize that the proposed new 2020 Games’ sports are subject to IOC approval, but it is an exciting development. If Los Angeles has the honor of being elected as the host city of the 2024 Games. we look forward to working with the IOC on developing a dynamic and flexible program that reflects our city and region’s history of youth culture and sport, and would help connect the Games to the widest possible audience world wide”.
Agenda 2020 is a set of reforms introduced by the IOC last year that in part encourages bid cities to incorporate feasibility and sustainability in bid plans that will help open up opportunities for more cities to be involved in hosting the Games.
Los Angeles is bidding against Rome, Budapest, Paris and Hamburg for the 2024 Summer Olympic Games.