The Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has announced that it is looking favorably at including a figure skating team event at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.
Before making a final decision, the board will consider the outcome of the next ISU Team Trophy 2011 in Japan next April and has empowered the IOC President to take the final decision on its behalf.
“The ISU is delighted with this announcement which marks an important moment in figure skating history,” International Skating Union (ISU) president Ottavio Cinquanta said. “We congratulate the IOC under the leadership of President Rogge, the Programme Commission chaired by Franco Carraro and we also extend gratitude for the constructive approach and good collaboration provided by the IOC Sports Department representatives Gilbert Felli and Christophe Dubi.”
The ISU, in cooperation with the Japan Skating Federation (JSF) and the TV Asahi Corporation, launched the first ever international team figure skating competition during the 2008-09 season in Tokyo, Japan. The event, a competition which featured the top national figure skating teams, was unprecedented in ISU history and met with an overwhelmingly positive response from the skating community, spectators and TV viewers.
“The ISU congratulates the Japan Skating Federation and TV Asahi for their participation in the launch and development of this ISU Event which has contributed significantly to the further development of Figure Skating worldwide,” Cinquanta said.
He further extended thanks to all ISU broadcast partners for the excellent exposure of figure skating on television and thanked all ISU sponsors, with a special mention to IMG for its cooperation.
The figure skating team event at the Olympic Winter Games 2014 in Sochi is expected to feature the ten best national figure skating teams, composed of one single skater from both the men’s and ladies categories, one pair team and one ice dance team.