Earlier today, at its meeting in London, Great Britain, the IPC Governing Board decided that the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games sport programme should remain the same as for Tokyo 2020 with 22 sports included.
The 22 sports are: athletics, archery, badminton, blind football, boccia, canoe, cycling, equestrian, goalball, judo, powerlifting, rowing, shooting, sitting volleyball, swimming, table tennis, taekwondo, triathlon, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair fencing, wheelchair rugby and wheelchair tennis. CP Football which made the final stage for consideration was not included in the Paris 2024 Paralympic sport programme.
I would like to send my warmest congratulations to the 22 sports that will form part of a mouth-watering Paris 2024 Paralympic Games sport programme. The 22 Para sports have strong global appeal, support gender balance and offer athletes with a wide range of impairments – including those with high support needs – opportunities to compete on the biggest stage of all.
The process to decide which sports made the Paris 2024 programme started in November 2017 and involved our most in-depth assessment yet of sports within the Paralympic Movement.
Twenty-three sports all completed a comprehensive application pack that allowed the IPC to measure the strength and potential of each sport. Sports were assessed on governance, rules and regulations, anti-doping programme compliance and activities, worldwide reach, Classification Code compliance and quadrennial competition programme. All 23 sports were found viable for inclusion in the Games.
The IPC also considered the costs and complexity of operations on the Paris 2024 Organising Committee.
In deciding the final sports for inclusion, the Board assessed all applications and committed to the Paralympic Movement’s desire to pursue gender parity, safeguard the involvement of athletes with high support needs and ensure that a diverse range of nations could take part. In line with Olympic Agenda 2020, the Board needed to maintain athlete numbers around 4,350 and ensure that any potential changes to the Tokyo 2020 sport programme were cost neutral.
With these guiding principles, expanding the Games to 23 sports was not a viable option without growing athlete numbers beyond 4,350 or increasing costs.
We explored every possible option to see how CP Football could fit into the sport programme as the sport’s inclusion would have impacted the gender balance of the Games. The only way to compensate this would have been to remove male athlete slots from other sports – a move that would then have resulted in 23 sports and additional costs – or not include another predominantly male sport. This move would have reduced the number of high support needs athletes, a move that would have gone against our guiding principles.
Despite a strong bid and excellent progress made in the last four years, we decided not to include CP Football in the Paris 2024 sport programme. I know the CP Football community will be disappointed at our decision, but if the sport continues to make progress and further develops the women’s game, then it will be in a much stronger position for inclusion in future Paralympic Games.
The IPC will announce this decision at 15:00 CET via press release which can be found in the pages below. I ask you to keep this information confidential until after this time.