World Skateboarding Federation President Tim McFerran has revealed talks with Los Angeles 2024

World Skateboarding Federation (WSF) President Tim McFerran admitted he has held talks with Los Angeles 2024 about them being on the Olympic programme if they are chosen to host the Games, but admitted there is a “long way to go” if the sport is to be included at Tokyo 2020. 

Skateboarding has been included as part of the International Roller Sports Federation (FIRS) proposal for inclusion at Tokyo 2020, insidethegames exclusively revealed, and McFerran hopes it can be part of the Olympic programme in future.

He also claimed that they had begun discussions with Boston 2024 before their bid was dropped by the United States Olympic Committee after Mayor Marty Walsh refused to sign the controversial Host City contract.

Skateboarding itself is not eligible to apply as an individual sport because neither of the sport’s two governing bodies - the International Skateboarding Federation or the WSF - are recognised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

“I have personally had talks with the 2024 Boston group and have reached out to the LA 2024 group,” McFerran told insidethegames.

“We have already reached out to the LA 2024 group very early on with the idea of skateboarding.

“The IOC’s Agenda 2020 was a game changer for skateboarding as it allows for host countries to submit sports events to the IOC for consideration. 

“I am confident that skateboarding will be one of those sports and will continue to reach out to the LA 2024 committee and assist with anything they need.

“We have conceptual ideas based upon their bid documents on how skateboarding can fit in with their venues.”

Skateboarding could be included at Tokyo 2020 as part of roller sports after FIRS included the sport in its proposal
Skateboarding could be included on the Olympic programme at Tokyo 2020 as part of roller sports after the International Roller Sports Federation included the sport in its proposal ©Getty Images

McFerran’s comments follow Los Angeles 2024 releasing their updated bid book, including a proposed temporary skateboarding facility in Santa Monica, a region synonymous with the sport, as part of the Coastal Cluster of venues.

The WSF President is keen to capitalise on skateboarding’s rich heritage in the US by pushing for inclusion at the 2024 Olympic Games, although his plans could face difficulty if Los Angeles is not chosen to host the event by the IOC.

His first objective would be for FIRS to win their push for Olympic inclusion for Tokyo 2020, however, as roller sports is one of eight vying for Olympic inclusion along with baseball and softball, widely considered the favourite to be included after it was axed following Beijing 2008, karate, squash, bowling, sport climbing, and wushu.

“It is our sincere wish that skateboarding is chosen for the 2020 Tokyo Games as we feel it will bring a more youthful audience to the outstanding sports that are already part of the Olympic Programme,” McFerran added.

“Skateboarding has a long way to go in a very short time to get organised and get ready but the WSF has a strong leadership and are committed to ensuring that skateboarding globally is prepared and every country has the opportunity to submit their athletes for skateboarding.”

The Tokyo 2020 Additional Events Programme Panel are due to make a decision on sports being added to the Olympics at some point in September, while the IOC is due to elect its chosen host city for the 2024 Olympics and Paralympics at its Session in Lima, Peru in 2017.

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