Press Release ICF | Richard Petit - The International Canoe Federation's Board Meeting in Marrakesh resulted in several key outcomes for the sports future including a clear commitment to deliver gender equity, an investment in online communications and motion to ensure strategic alignment to make a positive contribution to the IOC 2020 Agenda.
The meeting was opened with a presentation from the ICF President and IOC Member, José Perurena (ESP), who outlined his vision for the future of the sport and how the ICF can align its strategic priorities to the IOCs Agenda 2020 to enhance its position within the Olympic movement.
The IOC's Agenda 2020 is a series of adjustments creating a flexible roadmap for the future of the Olympic Movement under the guidance of IOC President Thomas Bach. The Agenda includes 40 recommendations that include creating a more flexible and less expensive Olympic bid process, a move from a sport-based to an event-based programme, an Olympic TV channel and a strengthening of the principles of good governance and ethics in the Olympic movement. There are also measures to reduce discrimination in sport and the promotion of drug-free athletes.
The ICF Board approved a number of motions directly related to the IOCs recommendations including securing complete gender equity within the Olympic programme for 2020 and to continue with a full governance review.
In addition, the Federation's Olympic Strategy Commission will continue to assess all elements of the Olympic programme and conduct an extensive review across the eight disciplines: sprint, slalom, marathon, ocean racing, dragon boat, freestyle, canoe polo and wildwater.
Talking after the meeting the ICF President said, "It has been very successful. We have shown that we are united in our approach to ensure gender equity across our sport and that we are all keen to continue to build on the progress that has already been made with the ongoing development of our sport."
The Board also unanimously passed a proposal to invest in a four-year communications strategy to redevelop the sports website, bolster its impact across social media and work closely with athletes to create an integrated platform to increase the profile of global canoeing.
Also on the agenda was the allocation of 10 World Championships with four being awarded to Olympic venues, underlining the sports commitment to create real post-Games legacy.
The 2017 ICF Canoe Freestyle World Championships and the 2018 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships will both be contested on the 2016 Rio Olympic Games Canoe Slalom course.
Continuing the Olympic legacy theme, the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games course in La Seu D’Urgell will host the 2019 ICF Canoe Slalom and Wildwater World Championships, whilst the Freestyle World Championships will be contested in Sort.
This is the first time the three disciplines have been combined to create a single region focal point for the three whitewater canoeing World Championships in the same season.
The Spanish Federation's innovative bid also included a significant investment in the sports development, plus a commitment to redevelop the venue in Sort increasing its world-class credentials.
The 2018 ICF Junior and U23 Canoe Slalom World Championships will travel to Ivrea, Italy. This is the first time a canoe slalom world championship has been hosted in Italy since it visited Mezzana in 1993.
Italy also secured the 2016 ICF Canoe Polo World Championships that will be contested in Siracusa.
Szeged has the honour of hosting the 2019 ICF Canoe Sprint World Championships, this is the fourth time the championships have visited the home of Hungarian Canoe Sprint.
The 2019 ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships went to Shaoxing, China and Lake Lanier Gainesville in the USA won the bid to host the 2018 ICF Dragon Boat World Championships.