(ATR) More than 60 spots in the Tokyo Olympics will be awarded directly to top finishers in the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima.
The Pan American Games will feature competition in 38 sports from July 26 to August 11.
Veteran Jamaican sports leader Michael Fennell, who heads the Pan Am Sport Technical Commission, tells Around the Rings that Lima will provide direct qualification for Tokyo in some events. He says other competitions will count toward meeting qualification standards for Tokyo.
Disciplines with direct qualification to the Olympic Games:
Diving: Gold medalists in 3m springboard and 10m platform, men and women.
Artistic swimming: Team gold and duet gold.
Water Polo: Gold medal men and woman.
Archery: Four slots: 2 men, 2 women ( 1st place mixed team and 1 st place in both men and women individual)
Equestrian: Top two finishers in dressage and eventing and top three in jumping.
Handball: Gold medal men’s and women’s teams.
Field Hockey: Gold medal men’s and women’s teams.
Modern Pentathlon: Top five men and women.
Sailing: a total of 10 slots in Tokyo for top finishers in laser, Nacra mixed and 49er.
Shooting: 24 places from the individual events.
Surfing: men and women gold medalists in shortboard.
Table Tennis: men and women singles gold medalists.
Tennis: Gold medalists and runners-up in singles.
The sports which will use Lima results to count toward qualification standards for Tokyo include swimming, athletics, badminton, karate and weightlifting.
No More Sports At Risk
Following the elimination of skateboard from the Lima sports program earlier this month, Fennell tells Around the Rings "there is no other sport at risk" from the same fate.
He described the elimination of skateboarding as "very unfortunate".
Lima organizers made the decision to cut skateboarding because the Pan Am event would not be counted for Olympic qualification. A skateboard event in California being held at the same time as the Pan Am Games will be a qualifying event.
Fennell says he trusts that skateboarding will be included in the 2023 Pan Ams in Santiago as a qualifier for Paris 2024.
"We would like all the international and continental federations to be a part of the Pan American Games to guarantee the best available in all sports," he tells ATR.
Breaking for Santiago 2023
Breaking, also known as breakdancing, is still not a certainty for the 2023 Pan Ams, despite being proposed for its Olympic debut in Paris in 2024.
"Today, breakdance is not a Pan-American sport and we do not have enough details to justify being included in the program," Fennell said.
"There is a process that we must respect. And we ask that any new sport be accepted by at least 20 national Olympic committees. Between 20 and 41 NOCs should have that sport recognized in their respective countries," he added.
"We must guarantee that, if we are going to adopt or recognize a new sport, they must go through that process," he said.
Lima Preparations Remarkable
Fennell travelled to Lima last week to observe test events.
"Lima has done a remarkable job in a short space of time," he says.
"There is no doubt that we were extremely worried, but the work done has been relevant. Now we have to dedicate time to the problems of administration, how the events are managed, the presentation of the sport and ensure that all the services of officials, the system of timing, scoring and results, the facilities for spectators and athletes are in top form," he says.
"The Peruvians have really done a commendable job," said Fennell.
Reported by Ed Hula.