STORY AND IMAGE BY ED MORAN
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USRowing announced Tuesday afternoon the postponement of the 2020 U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Team Trials – Rowing II scheduled for April 13-18 at Nathan Benderson Park in Sarasota-Bradenton, Florida.
According to the announcement, “USRowing’s Olympic & Paralympic Selection Procedures are currently under review and will be amended. The USRowing High Performance Committee is holding discussions regarding a new timeline and events that may be possible for the selection of the team. As soon as this is finalized, the information will be passed along.”
The USRowing announcement comes after statements from the International Olympic Committee and World Rowing taking the position that the Olympics will go on as planned. For now.
The IOC released its statement as an official communique even as national sports federations around the world work on contingency plans for the distribution of the remaining roster spots after qualification events were canceled last week.
Shortly after issuing the communique, World Rowing followed with an update. In their statement, FISA said it was working closely with the IOC and is continuing to study solutions to filling the remaining spots that were supposed to be filled through qualification regattas that were canceled Saturday.
“In particular reference to qualification for the Olympic Games, FISA recognises the IOCs duty to take a coordinated approach in addressing the modifications to the qualification systems of all sports caused by event cancellations due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The importance of giving as much certainty to our athletes and the rowing community as soon as possible is a high priority. FISA has been in daily contact with the IOC and aims to finalise changes to the qualification system with the IOC as soon as possible ahead of the planned IOC deadline of early April. The next communication will be posted as soon as agreement is reached with the IOC Executive Board,” the FISA statement read.