Vancouver Ultimate Frisbee players could compete in future Summer Olympic Games
The International Olympic Committee officially recognized frisbee as an Olympic sport on Sunday
The youngest members of Canada's only Major League Ultimate Frisbee team could one day compete for gold in an Olympic Games.
The International Olympic Committee officially recognized the flying disc game as an Olympic sport on Sunday. That means it can now compete with other sports for a spot in a future Summer Games.
Vancouver Nighthawks spokesperson Chris Cannon says if the sport makes it into the 2024 or 2028 Olympics, teenagers who are on the team now could find themselves bidding for the podium.
"We actually have players in their late teens — 18 and 19 years old. These might be some of the senior players of the team. So it's very exciting to be right on the cusp," he told CBC News on Monday.
7.5 million active Frisbee players worldwide
Cannon says with 7.5 million active players in 90 competitive organizations around the world, the inclusion of Ultimate Frisbee in an Olympic Games is inevitable.
"It's the fastest growing team sport in the world. Ultimate Frisbee, especially the World Flying Disc Federation, has made tremendous inroads into communities in Africa and India. It's really becoming the sport of the people and there seems to be no end in sight," he said.
"There doesn't seem to be anything in the way of this freight train rolling down the track."
The Vancouver Nighthawks are the only Major League Ultimate Frisbee team in Canada. They play against three other west coast teams — in Seattle, Portland and San Francisco.
Whichever team is ahead at the end of the season, then goes on to compete in national championships against one of four east coast teams.
Vancouver is also home to another professional team — the Vancouver Riptide — but they compete in a different league called the American Ultimate Disc League.