Greek sailing star sued by federation
Published on July 9th, 2020
The Hellenic Sailing Federation (HSF) has filed a lawsuit against Olympic windsurfing gold medallist Nikos Kaklamanakis for comments he made in the Greek Parliament.
Kaklamanakis, who claimed Olympic gold at the Atlanta 1996 Games in the Mistral windsurfing event, spoke in November and has since faced backlash from the HSF who said he accused them of “squandering money”.
One of Greece’s greatest Olympians, Kaklamanakis lit the Olympic Torch at the Opening Ceremony of his home Athens 2004 Games and went on to win his second Olympic medal with a silver in the same event.
The HSF are requesting €100,000 ($112,000 USD), according to the Athens News Agency.
“In the 32 years of continuous administration of the Federation, we have not seen an out-of-court settlement or lawsuit against anyone,” the governing body said. “However, against the former athlete and current coach we had to for what he said in the Greek Parliament last November in which he had spoken about the squandering of public money by the Federation.”
The HSF said that any money won from the lawsuit would be given to handicapped sailing athletes, as well as to local sailing clubs.
It added: “Since he did not respond to the out-of-court settlement, the Federation was required to file a lawsuit, for if we did not, it would be as if we accepted the accusations of the former athlete and current coach.”
Kaklamanakis, now 51, is also a three-time world champion and two-time world silver medallist.
Greece’s Sports Minister, Lefteris Avgenakis, said that the HSF’s action was “sad” and “outside the boundaries of sportsmanship and values”.
He added that every Olympian is not only a role model for their medals, but also for the “courage of his opinion.”
Kaklamanakis has yet to comment on the lawsuit.