by Jodie Bakewell-White
Yachting New Zealand’s Board of Directors has this week made a submission to the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) joining in the current discussion among the international yachting community around securing the future of yachting as an Olympic sport.
The submission from Yachting New Zealand (YNZ) comes after the announcement in November 2010 of a provisional Events slate to be considered for inclusion in the 2016 Olympic Games, and also the ISAF adopted Olympic Commission Report – an investigation lead by Phil Jones of Australia which proposed that key changes must be made if yachting is to maintain its place in the Olympic Games.
YNZ believes that the Olympic Games are important to yachting, and holds concerns that the provisional Events slate announced by ISAF late last year doesn’t ensure a future for our sport in the Olympic Games.
The submission to ISAF from YNZ was written after wide consultation and discussion in and out of New Zealand. It can be downloaded in full here on the YNZ website, and clearly states the events which YNZ feels should be on the Olympic Events slate and the reasons why.
The YNZ submission proposes that ISAF replaces the Event slate provisionally adopted in November with the following Event slate…
1. Men’s Windsurfing – RS:X
2. Women’s Windsurfing – RS:X
3. Men’s Single-Handed Dinghy – Laser
4. Women’s Single-Handed Dinghy – Laser Radial
5. Men’s High Performance Two-Handed Dinghy – 49er
6. Women’s High Performance Two-Handed Dinghy – Evaluation Trial
7. Open Multihull – Evaluation Trial
8. Men’s High Performance Single-Handed Dinghy – Evaluation Trial (to be suitable for men in the 85kg + weight range)
9. Men’s Two-Handed Dinghy – 470
10. Women’s Two-Handed Dinghy – 470
“We don’t believe that the provisional slate proposed by ISAF last November was in the best interests of the sport, and so we’ve chosen to promote what we feel is best for yachting, by making this submission to ISAF and publishing it for others to consider,” says Terry Nicholas, Chairman of the YNZ Olympic Committee.
“We reviewed the criteria set out in the Olympic Commission report, and established the Events (not classes) which we believe meet these criteria the closest, using a points system,” Nicholas explains.
YNZ believes that global mass appeal and exciting sailing is critical. Supplied equipment where practical and common hull equipment across more than one event both reduce cost.
YNZ feels that to force mixed gender events is impractical at the Olympic level of the sport and that the overall gender ratios in the YNZ proposed Events slate are in line with global participation in sailing and also in line with other Olympic sports.
YNZ believes that the cost of campaigning Keelboats in the Olympics, the limited access for sailors to compete in Women’s Match Racing on the international stage, and costs involved in hosting the keelboat events mean that it is not suited to inclusion in the Olympic Games.
In May this year ISAF Council will make the final decision on the Olympic events slate, and Yachting New Zealand hopes that our submission will promote further discussion and debate among the international yachting community in the weeks leading up to the May meeting.
Download the YNZ submission made to ISAF on Wednesday 9 May.
More on the provisional slate approved by ISAF in November 2010 here.
Download the Olympic Commission report from the ISAF website here.
Note from SailRaceWin: Surprise, surprise, Yachting NZ does not like the idea of mixed sailing crews! Please join the 21st Century!!!
Yachting New Zealand