World Sailing – course irritation. Part 1. Down With Finn!

Despite the blissful intonation made by the President of the World Sailing by Kim Andersen (by the way, anyone can easily compare and see – last year and this is his message to the Conference WS is identical, that is, to the last comma), this Conference is not in a good situation.

To hide the scandal in a noble family it is impossible to have any forces. And, as usual, the driving force of any scandal is money. In this case the money behind the Olympic classes and events.

Before its Annual conference in Sarasota, USA, Executive Committee of World Sailing made two belated statements, which further confused the matter with the Olympic movement in the system. Through for five months after the proposal is very controversial draft Olympic disciplines (events or event) for the Olympics 2024, the WS Executive Committee decided that one of the proposed disciplin unsustainable: it is surprising that it took so much time.

The Executive Committee rejected its proposal to introduce a double class keel boat, which planned to replace the proposed discipline Mixed One-Person Dinghy (“fast mixed Dinghy-single”). The last discipline is assumed that men and women compete on different boats in a single team and combine their scores to determine the result. But this discipline is still in sailing did not exist!

Later, there were again a proposal to add a 6 – or 10-foot keel yacht class, devoid of hydrofoils controlled by a mixed crew. But, identifying the possible success of such a discipline based on the popularity of racing, Vendee Globe and Volvo Ocean Race, the WS Executive Committee ignored the fact that these two events are round-the-world (i.e. “inclusive” in the regional sense) events that are held on yachts with a length of 60-65 feet, with a significant portion of the regattas held in southern latitudes with very impressive photos and videokartinki. In addition, such yachts are able to develop a very high speed (which creates the spectacular images), but it will clearly be impossible to double 10-meter boat.

However, this proposal does not bind a similar discipline with Olympic standards regattas, and also requires considerable level of sponsorship of these boats (and the events on them), despite the fact that outside private sponsorship program of the International Olympic Committee is not allowed.

The Executive Committee WS also forgotten about the 20 thousand signatures collected in April in the petition called stop the process of mass constant changes in the current Olympic classes – largely due to the adverse impact on the sports themselves.

In the end all of the debate of the classic Olympic class “Finn” which was the boat of choice for many of the great yachtsmen, apparently, still goes on stage. Although this sport is the stuff of legend – among them Paul Elvstrom and Ben Ainsley, who won four Olympic gold medals and also five-time winner of the America’s Cup Russell Coutts, who won the Finn Gold medal at the Olympic games in 1984 at the age of 23 years.

But “Finn” is rejected because of the need to respect “gender equality policy” adopted by the World Sailing, which demanded that all sports (with some exceptions) had equal participation and the number of disciplines for both sexes.

While “Finn” saves the unprecedented popularity even in the face of new “quick” classes that are entered into the program: at the world Cup in Aarhus, he was still one of the largest – exactly 90 boats.

Meanwhile, the Association class “Finn” extremely concerned at such developments, formulated an open letter, which we give below.


International Finn class Association (IFA) is very concerned that its too late “View 037-18” WS actually canceled a much-debated and democratically voted in may of this year, “Presentation of the M22-18” (which included the discipline of Mixed One-person Dinghy). Now the Finn class is clearly marked as a purely male (and not combined) discipline, which further locks our class in the field of expensive elite events that will lead to a reduction in its universality and possibility of wide participation in Olympic sailing.

Questions IFA WS include the following:
• Keel yacht of the type that the proposed WS (instead of mixed disciplines Dinghy-singles) will be extremely expensive. Very few countries will be able to justify the expense. Even if these boats at the Olympics will be provided for racing (by whom?), federations will still have to buy them for training and internal regattas. This will limit this discipline only rich countries and will significantly reduce the number of boaters and others in a position to compete for a spot at the Olympics.

• Currently in a class “Finn” there is a significant group of young sailors who weigh over 85 kg and have ambitions to participate in the Olympic games. Even if their Federation and will be able to afford to take part in the campaign on the pitching yacht, most of these boaters do not have a choice. Many of them will be lost to the sport. As shown by past Olympic games with medal-Finistere such as Paul Elvstrom, Russell Coutts, John Bertrand, Iain Percy, Ben Ainslie and Giles Scott, these sailors have become one of the most famous and popular sailors-racers. This path is now closed.

• Young athletes weighing more than 85 kg now will not be going to the Olympics. Of course some of them will try another sailing discipline (or even a sport), but many will not – either because of the extremely high cost, or due to the presence of a large number of old and experienced sailors of keel boats in the country.

• Olympics must first touch the youth and their opportunities for participation.

In the Finn class, as expected the equipment for the male part of the discipline of Mixed One-Person Dinghi corresponds to the section “Submission M22-18” and is a reliable option for future Olympic equipment. And its use does not require high risks and costs associated with the testing of a previously unknown item. In 2018 Finn was the first of the classes which filled the proposed quota of participants at the world Cup in Aarhus.

• “Performance 037-18” ignores the extensive work already done for the discipline of Mixed One-Person Dinghi (see “Presentation of 047-18”), which discipline should be given the chance to succeed. She was intended to become the most exciting sailing event of the Olympic games in 2024.

• “Practicality” for safe offshore racing keel yachts are also well known, not to mention such national or club racing and daily training. How much effort is spent on this? And how much fuel will be consumed by boats during a single workout in the open sea?

• The goal of creating gender equality has already been achieved in fact s current programme 2020. In an interview…/World-Sailing-President-on-Gen… Kim Andersen has clearly demonstrated that the IOC was completely satisfied with what is planned to make us part of the gender equality at the Games in Tokyo 2020, and acknowledged that full gender equality at events and among athletes is not required until 2028.

• Perhaps the real reason this view is the hope that Olympic racing keel class will attract sponsorship money and increase the presence of the media at the Olympics.

We believe that this event will be attractive only to a very small number of countries, but would greatly increase the cost of the media, as sailing is already one of the most expensive to broadcast Olympic sports. Has anyone contacted the IOC and asked whether they would be willing to cover these new costs?
In light of the foregoing, the Finn class encourages all members of the Executive Committee unanimously to reject a submission “Submission 037-18”.

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