Irish sailors seeking the last qualification places for the Tokyo 2021 Olympic Games will have to wait till late 2020 or early 2021 for those events to take place, according to World Sailing.
The news follows the postponement of the Tokyo Games as Afloat reported earlier. In response, World Sailing it will not hold Olympic qualification events for Africa, Asia or Europe in the short term.
An Irish Laser Radial has qualified for Tokyo but the fate of two other Irish boats is in last chance selection at these now rescheduled qualification events for the men's Laser and 49er dinghy respectively.
World Sailing will now work with the IOC and Tokyo 2020 on timing of the postponed Olympic Games, necessary adaptations to Games delivery plans and Olympic qualification systems.
The IOC President and the Prime Minister of Japan have concluded that the Games of the XXXII Olympiad in Tokyo must be rescheduled to a date "beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community.”
World Sailing, the world governing body of the sport, supports the IOC and Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee decision to ensure the health and well-being of athletes, fans and support personnel worldwide.
President Kim Andersen and the World Sailing Executive Office are in direct communication with the IOC Sports Department. The IOC is engaging with World Sailing to develop the necessary plans in full partnership and to ensure full transparency with a focus on information for World Sailing and the athletes.
In the short term, World Sailing will not hold Olympic qualification events for Africa, Asia or Europe. World Sailing is working with the IOC on an update to the qualification system where its recommendation will be to look at hosting qualifications events in late 2020 or early 2021.
World Sailing will now work with the IOC and Tokyo 2020 on the timing of the postponed Olympic Games, necessary adaptations to Games delivery plans and Olympic qualification systems.
Following the IOC decision, World Sailing is working closely with the Japanese Sailing Federation, the Organising Committee of the 2020 Hempel World Cup Series Final, and will communicate decisions on the 2021 event calendar shortly.