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Mid point at World Sailing Annual Conference

Published on October 30th, 2019

Hamilton, Bermuda (October 30, 2019) – Yesterday and today, the meeting of Committees for Equipment, Race Officials, Development and Regions, Constitution, Para World Sailing and Race Rules took place as World Sailing’s Annual Conference reached its mid-point. Last evening the World Sailing Awards were presented.

Equipment Committee

Ahead of the Annual Conference, World Sailing tested the RS:X, Glide, iFoil, Formula Foil and Windfoil 1 at sea trials and analyzed them against the criteria outlined in an invitation to tender.

Following the sea trials, the Paris 2024 Windsurfer Evaluation Working Party published a full report – available here – to give full insight into the process. Their recommendation to World Sailing’s Equipment Committee was to select the Starboard iFoil as the equipment for Paris 2024.

The Committee debated the merits of the report before voting on what piece of equipment they would recommend Council to approve. In line with the Working Party paper, they voted to recommend the Starboard iFoil. Council, the main decision making body, will discuss their recommendation on November 1-2 before ratification at the AGM.

In advance of the conference, the L30 and Funboard Youth Racing Class put forward applications for World Sailing Class status. The Committee discussed the applications and voted to recommend Council approve the Funboard Youth Racing class.

Further discussions were held on the Equipment Rules of Sailing where they made their recommendations for the 2021-2024 edition of the book, the equipment for the Paris 2024 Mixed Two Person Keelboat Offshore and safety in sailing.

Race Officials Committee

Chaired by Jan Stage, World Sailing’s Race Officials Committee represents the International Judges, Umpires, Race Officers and Measurers and liaises with committees responsible for other disciplines. Furthermore, they are responsible for educating and certifying Race Officials so the rules of the sport are applied on and off the water.

Ahead of the session, the Sub-committees of the four disciplines met to discuss their specific areas. They put forward their recommendations on appointments and the Committee confirmed the appointments. These will be published on World Sailing’s website on October 31.

Following World Sailing’s Gender Balance: A Case for Change forum, the committee looked at ways to better engage females and how to encourage them to go into officiating. They discussed the barriers that they face and ways in which they, the Committee, can engage the community.

In its second year of usage, the Race Officials Application portal received positive feedback with further development in the pipeline to streamline administration of the 650+ International Race Officials.

Development and Regions Committee

World Sailing initiatives such as the Emerging Nations Programme (ENP), Para Sailing Development Program (PDP) and other initiatives were at the forefront of the discussion at the Development and Regions Committee.

Canada’s David Covo Chaired the session and the number of topics discussed truly showcased how much work World Sailing puts into growing the sport globally.

The Emerging Nations Programme (ENP), Para Sailing Development Programme (PDP) and Development Symposium are three ongoing initiatives that were presented. The ENP supports sailors from emerging nations and most recently, a senior ENP sailor, Deisy Nhaquile, became the first athlete from Mozambique to qualify the nation in sailing. The PDP aims to grow Para World Sailing disciplines and the Development Symposium brings together delegates to share and discuss best practice.

Other programs such as Recognised Training, Approved Training Centres, Technical Courses for Coaches, Training Scholarship and Women in Sport were also reviewed.

Para World Sailing Committee

A 2020-2023 strategic plan for Para World Sailing was presented to delegates at the Committee meeting.

Over the past five years, World Sailing has increased the number of nations with Para sailors competing at international events by 30%. The Para World Sailing Strategy 2020-2023 builds on the success and sets out an ambitious plan. The strategy identifies four goals which include:

#1 – Increase worldwide participation to 45 nations on six continents by the end of 2023
#2 – Expand competition
#3 – Effective marketing and communications
#4 – Governance and rules

Click here for the strategy document.

On the strategy, Massimo Dighe, Para World Sailing Manager commented, “World Sailing is committed to growing Para sailing and giving more opportunities to sailors. The strategy sets out what our key priorities are so we can consolidate and build on the success and growth we have delivered over the last five years.

“Through the strategy we will increase opportunities for all sailors with attractive new classes and an increase in cooperation with existing classes such as the Hansa 303, RS Venture Connect and the 2.4mR. Furthermore, we will work closely with our MNAs to increase the number of global events for Para sailors and deliver Para Development Programmes.”

Racing Rules Committee

The 2021-2024 Racing Rules of Sailing will be published on 1 June 2020. The 2019 Annual Conference is the last opportunity for amendments to be made ahead of publication.

In total, 124 submissions proposing amendments and new rules were received in advance of the conference. The Committee features rules experts who have held high positions at major international events including the Olympic Games, the America’s Cup and The Ocean Race. Working party meetings in the lead up to the Annual Conference allowed them to understand each individual submission and they spent the day debating and deciding on which amendments will be made.

Constitution Committee

The Constitution Committee are responsible for reviewing the Constitution, Regulations, structure and the World Sailing Committees terms of reference and they recommended changes to Council as necessary.

Throughout their session they considered and made recommendations to World Sailing’s Council on their submissions. They also considered submissions and gave opinions on submissions for the Board, Equipment Committee, Events Committee, Oceanic and Offshore Committee and Racing Rules Committee.

During the session, the Committee also received a report from World Sailing’s Governance Commission on a proposal to reform the governance of World Sailing. After publication in May 2019, the Governance Commission received extensive feedback and in response produced a Revised Proposal.

The Governance Reform is a major talking point in Bermuda and World Sailing’s Member National Authorities will vote on the Revised Proposal at the Annual General Meeting on November 3, 2019.

The Annual Conference continues tomorrow with the Events Committee and Oceanic and Offshore Committee meetings.

World Sailing Annual Conference details… click here.

How to Follow
Daily news reports will be available on World Sailing’s website, World Sailing’s Twitter and Facebook account will cover the event with regular news and updates and daily videos, providing insight into the discussions, will also be available: click here.

And Scuttlebutt will be there
As I did in 2018, I will be attending the World Sailing’s 2019 Annual Conference to watch the sausage get made. Within the brick and mortar of World Sailing is a volunteer army seeking to navigate an amazingly diverse sport through cultures and requirements, and I again look forward to seeing how it is done. – Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt

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