Members of the International Olympic Committee, meeting in London, approved six new events for the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia. The most high profile of all was the addition of women's ski jumping after all sorts of appeals failed to let the women jump in Vancouver, B.C. in 2010.
Deedee Corradina, president of Women's Ski Jumping USA, said "Sochi, Russia can proudly proclaim that it will be hosting the first gender-equal Winter Games in Olympic history.
Ski Halfpipe competition for both men and women was also approved for the Sochi Games. This inclusion has been sought by the freestyle community. The admission of ski halfpipe into the arena of the rings is certain to re-spark the continuing controversy over whether the "going mainstream" of Olympic competition will signal the "death of the sport" or significantly elevate its athletes and the sport onto the world stage. It is likely that events such as the Dew Tour and ESPN's "X" Games will continue let the "cool factor" stay intact.
Other sports okayed include a luge team competition, a biathlon mixed relay, and a figure skating team competition.
"These are exciting, entertaining events that perfectly complement the existing events on the sports program, bring added appeal and increase the number of women participating in the Games. I can look forward to watching athletes compete in the events in Sochi 2014," said IOC President Jacques Rogge.
The IOC tabled other potential sport admissions for further study, including men's and women's ski and snowboard slopestyle, and Alpine team parallel competition, but said a decision on these would be reached in "the coming weeks."