First step for Ultimate towards the Olympics

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has granted the WFDF provisional recognition. This is the first step on a long road to seeing Ultimate in the Olympics, but again raises the question… How can a self-refereed sport remain fair when an Olympic Gold medal is at stake? In a sudden death Olympics Final situation, with a receiver going up for the winning score, and a defender going for the game-saving block, the pass isn’t completed and there is the question of a strip/foul… How can this situation be resolved fairly, and in a way which can be entertaining for the crowds (as that’s necessary for Olympic sports)?
1) SOTG – the players decide between themselves if it was a foul or not. With an Olympic Gold at stake, it’s fair to say their judgement may be somewhat clouded in a close call, and the discussion may take a while leading to a complete anti-climax.
2) Observers – if the players disagree, the observer with the best perspective makes the call. In reality though, if it’s a close call then the observer knows less than the players about what happened.
3) Referees – as above, except no time given for the players to agree or disagree, the referee simply makes a ruling immediately.
4) Video refs – huge expense to get these implemented, also time consuming to get a result, but probably the most accurate / fair outcome. Not bad for the crowd if they can see it on a big screen!

Which, if any of the above, do you think would be best path of resolution?

Here’s the info in full, originally from ukultimate.com.

“WFDF welcomes this recognition to join the Olympic family and we confirm the commitment of the flying disc community to the ideals set out in the Olympic Charter,” stated WFDF President Robert “Nob” Rauch. “Our strong value of “spirit of the game” on the field of play and off of it has always reflected these principles. We thank the IOC Executive Board and administration for their support and encouragement, and our Member Associations, board of directors, and athletes for their enthusiasm and commitment to this process.”

“This recognition by the IOC today is a very important milestone for flying disc sports, and should greatly support our grass roots development programs in countries around the world, opening the door for our members to seek their own National Olympic Committee recognition,” commented Rauch further. “However, this is just the start of a long journey as we look to further develop disc sports and fulfill all the criteria stipulated by the IOC so that one day we will have a product which is equal to the current sports of the Olympic Games in both sports excellence and commercial interest.” WFDF joins 33 other international sports federations that are recognized by the IOC but are not currently a part of the Olympic sports program.

The World Flying Disc Federation (“WFDF”) serves as the international governing body of all flying disc sports. Since WFDF was founded in 1985, the development of the sport has been quite rapid and Ultimate and the other disc disciplines today are some of the fastest growing sports in the world, due to the simplicity of the basic rules, the speed of the game, its self-officiation, and its appeal with youth and across gender lines. WFDF estimates that there are currently 7.5 million active participants globally across the various disciplines, including Ultimate, Beach Ultimate, Disc Golf, Freestyle, Guts and Field Events. WFDF today represents 59 member associations in 56 countries. WFDF was approved as a member of GAISF (now SportAccord) and the International World Games Association in 1995, is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) registered corporation in the State of Colorado, USA, and it is a signatory of the WADA World Anti-Doping code.

6 group games to watch at Tour 1

Tour 1 2013: London Calling is the most highly anticipated Tour event that has ever happened. The club teams at the top are bringing their strongest squads, the Open Under 23‘s are in the mix for the first time, the international attendance is plentiful, new teams will be flexing their muscles, the fight for the top 4 in A Tour will be fierce, the qualification spots from B Tour will be harder fought than even before, and articles and predictions are flying around the social media sites like wildfire. Not to mention now is when the battle for WUCC 2014 qualification begins!

09:00, Pitch 17
Iceni Savage v Nice Bristols 1

Iceni have again entered 2 teams, one of them being incredibly small on numbers (7 or 8 in case of injury I think). They performed great last year, actually finishing above the regular Iceni team, but do they have it in them to upset the seedings in this match? Nice Bristols have gradually but consistently gone from strength to strength over the last few years, winning this game could cement their place at the very pinnacle of UK women’s ultimate in many people’s minds.
Prediction: 15-13 to Nice Bristols.

10:40, Pitch 4
EMO v CUSB

No game with Davide Morri playing can be boring, especially ones which are set to be close… With both teams having plenty of young athletic talent on board, expect both bids and words to be flying left and right in this battle. Neither team will be happy with finishing bottom of this group – EMO’s captain having recently been outraged at his team not receiving coverage in an article about the top teams by The Secret Frizzer, and CUSB having travelled to the UK with the intention to battle it out at the top. These teams finished 12th and 13th at EUCF 2012 (CUSB on top that time). EMO will be missing their captain Joe Wynder to GB U23 this Tour, which could be the difference…
Prediction: 15-12 to CUSB.

12:20, Pitch 1
Clapham v GB U23

This is the match the U23 squad must’ve been hoping for – the ultimate test against the best team in Europe. Predictions for how U23 will perform at Tour 1 have ranged from winning it to finishing outside the top 8 of the A Tour, and if anything will prove the unbelievers wrong then coming out with a victory here will be it. An U23 team competing in Tour has never been seen before, so nobody really knows what will happen! Keeping their heads on offence and putting in the goals no matter how long it takes will be key if they are to take the victory.
Prediction: 15-12 to Clapham.

12:20, Pitch 2
Chevron v Brighton City

A rematch of the 3v4 at Nationals last year, European runners-up Chevron have lost 9 of their young players to the GB U23 team, and some of their older players to Zimmer, whilst Brighton have only lost a couple to U23 and a couple to Brighton Echo, so are bringing a large team with 8 players not seen last season (a combination of youth coming through from Mohawks/Panthers, satellite players, and players returning from injury / time abroad) – after only 4 points separated them at the end of 2012, it will be interesting to see how the teams now match up at the start of 2013 with their much changed lines.
Prediction: Sudden death thriller.

12:20, Pitch 3
Bad Skid v Clapham Dogs

Bad Skid have performed consistently well at EUCF, giving Clapham trouble in the quarter final in 2011, and rising all the way up to 5th from the lower pools in 2012 (they were missing a couple of key players at their regionals, thus were under-seeded and knocked Brighton out of contention in the group stages). They are a young team, which means they are likely to be even stronger this year, especially after their experiences at recent EUCFs. Clapham are never to be underestimated, every one of their players bringing quality to the game, but will the D team have the patience and accuracy to put away their offence consistently?
Prediction: 15-13 to Clapham Dogs.

14:00, Pitch 2
Zimmer v Glasgow Ultimate

There has been plenty of chatter but little information about Zimmer – I can reveal they are a masters team, featuring countless names familiar to anyone who has been playing Tour for a few years – Dave Sealy, Dave Bixler, Dave Grayson, Dave Barnard (sure are a lot of Daves, reminds me of Glastonbury – speaking of which…), Rik Shipley, Si Hill, Si Weeks, Chris Berry… the list goes on. The amount of experience here is daunting.
On the other end of this game, Glasgow Ultimate – Shaun Webb and co have been doing plenty of work up in Glasgow to build a strong and self-sufficient ultimate community, and foster an environment of learning within a competitive atmosphere. This year sees the strong Glasgow-based players who have previously played for Fusion (also in their pool!) at Tour commit to the Glasgow Ultimate team, and combining this with the new talent which has been brewing beneath the surface for a while, it might just be enough to run circles around the experienced but “not quite as spritely as they used to be” Zimmer. The juxtaposition of youth vs experience here will be a sight to behold.
Prediction: 15-9 to Zimmer, who will throw a zone defence.

A Tour prediction:
1. Clapham
2. Bad Skid
3. GB U23
4. Clapham Dogs
B Tour prediction:
1. Zimmer
2. Ireland U23 Open
3. Manchester Ultimate
4. Glasgow Ultimate
C Tour prediction:
1. Guildford Ultimate
2. Portsmouth Ultimate
3. Lemmings
4. Limited Release

Full info and schedule for the event is available here.