Need to re-invigorate American sailing

Published on April 18th, 2021

Los Angeles will host the summer Olympics in 2028, and for Paul Cayard, U.S. Sailing’s new hire, that’s a perfect goalpost for the role he’s recently stepped into as Executive Director of U.S. Olympic Sailing, taking the helm of the US Sailing Team inclusive of the U.S. Olympic Sailing program.

Cayard’s an Olympian, he’s been around the sport for a long time, and maybe this role will in some way put the finishing touches on what has been a hugely rewarding and successful career. While he may not be young enough to go to the Olympics anymore, or to race an America’s Cup boat, he has a lifetime of the right experience and he’d like to help others achieve their dreams.

“I feel like I can be successful at this job and as an American sailor, that would be very satisfying,” Cayard explained. “It’s in my wheelhouse – the industry that has been my career – and it’s a challenge that inspires me and has captivated me. The job has been hard to do, there have been various efforts at doing it in the last 10-12 years and we haven’t quite got there. I know we can be successful.”

As Cayard noted, the U.S. is still the most medal-winning nation in Olympic Sailing although over the past 20-30 years the trend line has been down.

“We’ve been at the top of the sailing world – in 1984 in Los Angeles we won three golds and four silvers in 7 events,” Cayard said. “America can be competitive again, but the mission is really much broader than just the Olympics – we need to re-invigorate American sailing. The Olympics is the lightning rod for that.” – Full report

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Sailing Program
Men’s One Person Dinghy – Laser
Women’s One Person Dinghy – Laser Radial
Men’s Two Person Dinghy – 470
Women’s Two Person Dinghy – 470
Men’s Skiff – 49er
Women’s Skiff – 49erFx
Men’s One Person Dinghy Heavy – Finn
Men’s Windsurfing – RS:X
Women’s Windsurfing – RS:X
Mixed Multihull – Nacra 17

Original dates: July 24 to August 9, 2020
Revised dates: July 23 to August 8, 2021


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