Please select your home edition
Edition
Zhik 2021 Choice of Champions LEADERBOARD

IOC makes landmark move into virtual sports by announcing first-ever Olympic Virtual Series

by International Olympic Committee 22 Apr 01:42 PDT
Olympic Virtual Series © IOC

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) will partner with five International Sports Federations (IFs) and game publishers to produce the Olympic Virtual Series (OVS), the first-ever, Olympic-licensed event for physical and non-physical virtual sports.

Taking place ahead of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, the OVS will begin on 13 May, continuing through to 23 June 2021. The Olympic Virtual Series will mobilise virtual sport, esports and gaming enthusiasts all around the world in order to reach new Olympic audiences, while also encouraging the development of physical and non-physical forms of sports in line with the recommendations of the IOC's Olympic Agenda 2020+5.

IOC President Thomas Bach said: "The Olympic Virtual Series is a new, unique Olympic digital experience that aims to grow direct engagement with new audiences in the field of virtual sports. Its conception is in line with Olympic Agenda 2020+5 and the IOC's Digital Strategy. It encourages sports participation and promotes the Olympic values, with a special focus on youth."

David Lappartient, Chair of the IOC's Esports and Gaming Liaison Group (ELG), and President of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), said: "On behalf of the ELG, as well as the UCI, I am delighted to be involved in the launch of the first-ever Olympic Virtual Series. A number of IFs have well established virtual sports initiatives; and thanks to the cooperation between the IOC, the IFs and the publishers, the OVS is an exciting step forward for the virtual sports world and the Olympic Movement".

The following International Federations and gaming publishers will be part of the Olympic Virtual Series:

  • World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) - eBaseball Powerful Pro Baseball 2020, Konami Digital Entertainment

  • Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) - Zwift, Zwift inc.

  • World Rowing - Open format

  • World Sailing - Virtual Regatta, Virtual Regatta SAS

  • Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) - Gran Turismo, Polyphony Digital

The OVS creates a stage to connect the physical sporting world with the virtual and simulation sports gaming community, providing an opportunity to engage with the Olympic Movement. Each IF will offer its corresponding event in a format that maximises online mass participation and prioritises inclusivity and participation through the OVS. The mass-participation Series allows participants around the world to compete from home or their training facilities in order to generate excitement in the build-up to the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.

All five OVS events will differ in form and concept, and will operate via the sport's respective publisher platform where participants will be able to take part. Fans will have the opportunity to engage and follow the events on the Olympic Channel. Additional information on how to participate, as well as prizes included with select events, will be announced soon. Information will also be available online at https://www.olympicchannel.com/

In line with Recommendation 9 of Olympic Agenda 2020+5, which states "Encourage the development of virtual sports and further engage with video gaming communities", the launch of the first-ever OVS supports the IOC's Digital Strategy and aims to leverage the growing popularity of virtual sport to promote the Olympic Movement, Olympic values and sports participation and grow direct relations with young people. It supports the IFs in further establishing virtual and simulated forms of sports as a discipline within their regulations and strategies. Building on the success of their respective events, both the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) and the International Basketball Federation (FIBA), along with other International Federations such as the International Tennis Federation (ITF) and World Taekwondo (WT) have confirmed their excitement and commitment to exploring inclusion in future editions of the OVS.

Related Articles

Italia Sailing Team enters The Ocean Race 2022-23
The goal is to give Italian tourism a further boost and enhance the Made in Italy brand During a press conference organised by the Yacht Club Italiano on Sunday evening, the Italian Minister of Tourism, Massimo Garavaglia, gave his full support for an Italian entry in the next edition of The Ocean Race, scheduled to start in late 2022. Posted today at 2:42 pm
49er, 49erFX and Nacra 17 Europeans overall
Staniul & Sztorch narrowly win 49er Euros in a first for Poland Mikolaj Staniul with Kuba Sztorch (POL) won a tit for tat battle with Tim Fischer with Fabian Graf that played out over two 49er gold races on the final day in Thessaloniki. Posted today at 1:59 pm
Défi Azimut - A proper contest and a worthy winner
You could hardly hope for a more dramatic race You could hardly hope for a more dramatic race packed into less than two days at sea than we saw in the Défi Azimut-Lorient Agglomération 48-Hours classic, a contest that tested crews and produced another stellar performance at the front by APIVIA. Posted today at 1:12 pm
US Sailing Championship of Champions
Conner Blouin wins at Orchard Lake Village, Michigan The 47th Championship of Champions and the Jack Brown Trophy will be going home with Conner Blouin, from the College of Charleston Yacht Club, and his crew JoAnn Fisher (College of Charleston YC), and Samuel Blouin (Cedar Point YC). Posted today at 1:11 pm
Golden Globe Race team at Southampton Boat Show
Les Sables d'Olonne and the Golden Globe Race held a media briefing One year prior to the September 2022 start of the Golden Globe Race, Don McIntyre and the GGR team were joined by Les Sables d'Olonne, home port of the race and European capital of solo-sailing at the Southampton boat show. Posted today at 10:35 am
Changing style of Sydney 18 footers in the '60s
The infuence of champion skipper Len Heffernan on the class Len Heffernan was a champion 18ft Skiff skipper, designer and boat builder of the 1950s and 60s, who changed the style of the Sydney 18 footers in the early 1960s, but never gets the recognition that he deserves. Posted today at 8:01 am
GC32 Villasimius World Championship 2021 overall
Red Bull Sailing Team claims the title on countback Sport is all about emotions, highs and lows. Nowhere was this more evident today than at the conclusion of the third GC32 World Championship, held in Villasimius. Posted today at 7:33 am
Mustang Survival J70 Corinthian Nationals overall
Team USA1516 of Lee Sackett, Dave Kerr, Tom Sessions and Ian Moran win Team USA1516 of Lee Sackett, Dave Kerr, Tom Sessions and Ian Moran bested 31 all-amateur teams to emerge victorious at the Mustang Survival J/70 Corinthian US National Championship hosted by Eastern Yacht Club in Marblehead, MA. Posted today at 6:51 am
Rolex Big Boat Series overall
Podium finishes and perpetual trophies decided The final day of the 2021 Rolex Big Boat Series, hosted by St. Francis Yacht Club, featured long courses for all eight divisions, sending boats into every corner of San Francisco Bay. Posted today at 5:39 am
Stars+Stripes win the 56th Congressional Cup
Canfield's fifth victory makes him the winningest skipper in history Taylor Canfield's (USA) Team Stars+Stripes has triumphed in the 56th Congressional Cup at Long Beach Yacht Club, capping five-days of high-test competition in this World Match Racing Tour championship event. Posted today at 5:08 am
Sea Sure 2021 - FLO - FOOTERZhik 2021 Choice of Champions FOOTERLloyd Stevenson Catalyst 45 728x90px3 BOTTOM