ISAF Annual Conference: Day Six Summary

Published on November 12th, 2015

The 2015 ISAF Annual Conference has been held in Sanya, China, with the world of sailing gathering on the Chinese island of Hainan on November 7-14 to talk about the business of sailing and make the decisions that take the sport forward into the new year. Here is the November 12 day six summary

The Events Committee and the Oceanic and Offshore Committees brought the committee meetings to a close today with two days now of ISAF Council to follow. ISAF Council commences on November 13 and concludes on November 14 where the final decisions will be made. For now, catch up on the day below:

Events Committee
Rio 2016 Sailing Competition Manager Walter Boddener made the trip over to Sanya to present to the committee on next year’s Olympic Games. Boddener, alongside ISAF Technical Delegate Alastair Fox, ran through final plans for the Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition following an update of the successful 2015 Aquece Rio – International Sailing Regatta, the Olympic Test Event.

ISAF recently announced the provisional schedule for Rio 2016 and it was received well by the sailors. Check it out here.

The Events Committee reviewed a report from the ISAF Medical Commission and agreed that a flexible schedule was necessary to ensure fair racing next year.

They then turned attention to the long-term ISAF Events Strategy reviewing the IOC Agenda 2020 recommendations. The committee focused on the format and qualification system for Tokyo 2020. In advance of the Events Committee meeting, the Equipment Committee put forward a recommendation on the future of the Nacra 17. The Events Committee endorsed their recommendation to evolve the Nacra 17 into a foiling multihull for Tokyo 2020. It was also agreed that a long-term strategy for the 2024 Olympic Games and beyond was essential.

The Committee have also been focusing on World Championship strategy across the sport and have made some important changes to the world ranking system. They agreed that crews will be given equal points in the ISAF World Sailing Rankings.

A strong focus was put on the future of the Sailing World Cup, concentrating on the need to resolve calendar issues and create a compelling series of events culminating in a showcase final.

Good progress is being made for the delivery of the Aarhus 2018 World Sailing Championships. Aarhus 2018 will act as the first Olympic qualifier for Tokyo 2020 and the city has strong recent history of managing high profile events. The 2015 Nacra 17 Worlds were held in Aarhus in July.

The countdown to the 2015 ISAF Youth Worlds in Malaysia is well and truly on with 44 days to go. Youth Worlds Sub-committee chairman Cory Sertl presented the Events Committee with some updates and it’s set to be a record year for the event. Eighty nations will be in Langkawi, breaking the previous record of 67 nations.

Oceanic and Offshore Committee
The Oceanic and Offshore committee approved several submissions relating to the Special Regulations for the 2016 – 2017 edition of the book and this included a major re-write of the regulations.

Several speed records were broken over the last 12 months and the World Sailing Speed Record Council were on hand to give the committee an update. As their report stated, “The development of racing yachts continues unabated and one of the greatest attractions for the new yacht is to go for a world sailing record. Hence we had Oman Sail – a MOD 70 – breaking the Around Ireland record, Spindrift breaking the Cadiz to San Salvador record, and Comanche establishing a new monohull 24 hour record.”

Impressive achievements. Luderitz, Namibia also saw a large number of speed records broken.

A working party was created between the ORC and IRC Congress with ISAF support to work on a rating system for world championships over the next three years.

With lessons learnt from the Vestas Wind incident in the Volvo Ocean Race and other recent incidents, the committee recommended that the ISAF Offshore Sailing Incident Review Panel continue their work.

The Committee also recommended introducing in-build validation of yachts. At the moment the paper plans are certified, moving forward, surveyors will be able to go into the builders to inspect

A live blog will be available from Saturday November 7 through to Saturday November 14 here:

The Annual Conference meeting schedule, papers and further information here:

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