Monday, 29 November 2010

ISAF clueless about the future of our sport

The mixed multihull proposal  for the 2016 Olympics sucks (it is a non existent category). You go either for multihull girls and multihull boys or for multihull open.
The high perfomance skiff is already in as are the laser boy and girl.

If the ISAF realizes that the future of sailing is high performance sailing; skiffs, multihulls, windsurfing and kiteboarding should be in. Keelboats and slow dinghies (including the Laser) should be out.

The problem is that ISAF lacks a vision about the future of our sport and has made itself too dependent on the IOC. Too much money  is involved and ISAF is already on her back and will do anything to please the IOC.
The IOC wants to turn sailing  in a spectatorsport with stadiums (really! not my fantasy or suggestion) to make more money both form spectators and TV stations.
The future of our sport is not in drawing big audiences but getting more youngster as active particpants. (AC teams do something with this!)
We should not sell us out to the IOC or TV bosses and should realize that even without the Olympics the sport can prosper. Most TV and media coverage is not in the small boat scene but in the Volvo Ocean, America's cup, Extreme 40 and other mediadriven events.
It is true that only small boats get media attention if they are Olympic, but even that coverage is marginal and sailing will always be a side event in the Olympics.
The sailing enthousiasts will still be able to follow their heroes on internet. When I grew up I knew all the names of the catsailors and they were neither on national TV nor in national newspapers.

For us multhull sailors the AC has more impact than the Olympics especially if the ACtopsailors use beachcats for training purposes as most AC teams do with the James Spitthill/Glenn Ashby combo from the last AC in mind.

Kitesurfers be careful what you wish for!

Fortunately we didn't need ISAF in creating the cat community neither do we need it to grow further.
We will cooperate where possible and go sailing where others will be more active in politics.

Happy sailing!

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