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Program, Qualification Finalized for Youth Olympic Games
The International Triathlon Union (ITU) has announced the program and qualification system for the 2010 Youth Olympic Games (YOG) following approval from the IOC Executive Board.
One of 26 sports to be showcased in the inaugural event in Singapore next year, the triathlon competition will feature 64 of the world's most promising juniors.
"We're honored to be included in the first Youth Olympic Games," said ITU President Marisol Casado. "Triathlon's inclusion speaks volume about our sport's status in the Olympic family and shows it fits with the IOC's vision of the Youth Olympic Games."
Athletes will qualify for the Youth Olympic Games through one of five continental qualifiers which will be staged between May 1, 2009 and April 30, 2010. USA Triathlon is awaiting word from the ITU on the exact date and location of the qualification even for the Americas.
“This is a terrific step for our developmental program for the Olympics. And by including us in the Youth Games, the IOC recognizes the importance of triathlon in the world of sport,” said USAT CEO Skip Gilbert.
Members of the USAT Sport Performance staff will be able to see potential sites for the Olympic race when they travel to Singapore for the ITU World Championship Series event there in May.
Youth Olympic Games - Triathlon Competition Fast Facts
Events: men's individual sprint distance, women's individual sprint distance, mixed team relay (continental teams)
Maximum quota: 32 men, 32 women
Age eligibility: 17-18 years old at time of competition (born between January 1, 1992 and December 31, 1993)
The fast and furious format of the team relay will no doubt bring added excitement to the competition. Continental teams will consist of two men and two women each completing a super-sprint triathlon (250m swim, 7km bike, 1.8km run) with the cumulative time determining the winning team.
"It's very promising that the IOC has embraced the team relay concept for the Youth Olympic Games. It's a wonderful way to showcase triathlon's exciting action and represents a huge step towards our hope of adding a team relay in future Olympic Games," said Loreen Barnett, Secretary General of ITU.
In all, almost 3600 of the world's youth will gather in Singapore to compete in 201 total events representing 26 sports. Universality is one of the IOC's primary qualification system principles for the Youth Olympic Games.
Visit the Singapore 2010 website.
Find out more about the USA Triathlon Junior and Development Team Program.