Kiteboarding: World Sailing warns IFKO | Photo: IKA

The world governing body for the sport of sailing has requested the International Federation of Kitesports Organizations (IFKO) to stop claiming its relationship with the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

Andy Hunt, the CEO of World Sailing, asked the newly-founded IFKO to remove and cease to publish any information which associates the organization with IOC and plans for the sport of kiteboarding. The news was revealed in International Kiteboarding Association's website.

"IFKO is not currently a member of SportAccord and, therefore, has no formal recognition. A prerequisite for membership is that the applicant's sport is different from any sport that is governed by a current SportAccord member," explains Mirco Babini, president of IKA.

"World Sailing is a current SportAccord member. It is, therefore, unlikely that IFKO will be granted membership and World Sailing is currently waiting for confirmation of this by SportAccord. We regret that IFKO does not comply with worldwide recognized principles for the recognition of International Federations."

IKA notes that World Sailing has not approved the use of the expressions "World Cup," "World Championship," and even the word "World" by IFKO. Therefore, the organization headquartered in Guincho, Portugal, is not authorized to run kite events with World Sailing regulations and rules.

Athletes who decide to enter IFKO contests will be ineligible to compete in World Sailing and IKA events, in all classes, including Freestyle, KiteFoil, Big Air, Wave, and Course Racing. The guideline extends to judges and race directors.

The International Federation of Kitesports Organizations was founded in 2015 by Diogo Paes Fernandes and Jean-Pierre Pouleau.