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article imageFemale Canadian ski jumpers not giving up on Olympic dream

By Stephanie Dearing     Aug 22, 2009 in Sports
A group of Canadian ski jumpers have been fighting to have their sport included in the Olympics. Thus far, their attempts have not been successful - but these women are not giving up!
After the IOC decided that women's boxing could be part of the summer Olympics, the women have renewed their fight to have women's ski jumping included in the upcoming Vancouver Winter Games. A letter the women wrote to Jacques Rogge, President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) says "Your decision [to include women's boxing] has made the Summer Games' program gender-equal and the outpouring of positive response in the media indicates how 'right' that is for everyone, especially female athletes. The world would cheer even louder if you took the final step to allow women ski jumpers to compete in the Vancouver Olympic Winter Games in 2010."
Ten women from six different countries had taken the IOC to court in Canada, arguing that the IOC decision violated Canada's Charter of Rights. The BC Supreme Court judge who heard the case agreed with them, saying that the IOC was discriminating against the women. However, the court could not force the Olympic Committee to include the sport.
The women went to court after earlier bids to be included in the Vancouver winter Olympics were denied by the IOC. Ski jumping is the only olympic winter sport that will not have women competitors. Saying that their bid to be included in the winter olympics opened the door for women's boxing to be allowed in the 2012 summer games to be held in London, England the women are hopeful that the inclusion of women's boxing will now open the door to female ski jump competitors.
The IOC had concluded in 2006 that the sport of women's ski jumping was not "developed enough" to include in the Vancouver winter games, set to begin in February 2010. Both freestyle skiing and men's ski jumping will be part of the games. The women argued, in their letter sent to the IOC this last week, that their sport has grown. "Since 2006, our universality has increased substantially, and we now have close to 100 women from 18 countries competing at the elite level, again ahead of many of the Olympic sports we should be compared to. All we are asking for is one event in 2010, where our male teammates have three."
There are now 15 women actively seeking the inclusion of women's ski jumping in the winter Olympics.
More about Ski jumpers, Vancouver olympics, Winter olympics, Women ski jumpers, Olympics
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