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BMX freestyle champion says Games inclusion brings ‘fantastic opportunities’

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SHANGHAI: British BMX freestyle gold medalist Charlotte Worthington says her sport has grown rapidly since gaining official Olympic recognition.

BMX, an acronym for bicycle motocross, debuted at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games as a racing event and Worthington’s specialty, BMX freestyle, debuted as an Olympic medal event at Tokyo 2021 .

“Over these three years there has been a huge increase in the number of participants in competitions, as well as recognition and respect as a sport and for us as athletes,” said Worthington, who is in Shanghai this week for one of two qualifying events for the Shanghai 2024 Games. Paris.

“It has brought fantastic opportunities,” she added, noting that Olympic recognition opens doors to sponsorships.

The addition of BMX and other extreme sports such as skateboarding and surfing is part of the International Olympic Committee’s attempt to attract a younger global audience.

“I think the more variety there is and the more access ordinary people have to the sport and the inspiration to do it, that can only be a good thing,” she said. “It doesn’t have to look like traditional sports.”

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