Will we see the sailor François Gabart, currently leading the Route du rhum, at the Olympic Games in Paris 2024? A first step has been taken in this direction, after the decision of the International Sailing Federation to register two new events in the Olympic program. Reunited in Florida earlier this week, she has just vowed to see the mixed offshore race on monohulls of 6 to 10 m and kiteboarding (more commonly known as kitesurfing) on the Paris Games program, including sailing will take place off Marseille (Bouches-du-Rhône).
This decision is still subject to the final green light of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), which will say in 2020 whether it accepts the introduction of these two new events in the Olympic sailing program.
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After the London Olympics in 2012, a mixed offshore event could have emerged, with a final differentiated men's / women's ranking. The attempt finally aborted. "It was the result of compromises that nobody was satisfied," says the former skipper Nicolas Hénard, president of the French Sailing Federation and former coach François Gabart. The tricolor leader and his team then campaigned to find a new format of more consistent and more attractive tests. The offshore race for which it would take three days and two nights and allow the world to follow the ships.
This modification could allow France to fill up with medals. In both offshore racing and kitesurfing, the Hexagon is full of talent and shines in the world rankings.
Finally, if the new format voted by the international federation were chosen, it would open the possibility for an athlete to win several Olympic titles by aligning himself in different events. "Today it's impossible. For my part I had to participate in two editions of the Olympic Games to have two titles (Editor's note: in tornado, in 1988 and 1992", Explains Nicolas Hénard.