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Lasers - Applying a Blow Torch

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Does anyone know if the boat will continue to be an olympic class? Seems to me ISAF and the IOC won't put up with this shit for long!

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To be quite honest I'm not sure the IOC are going to be that bothered what the hell its called provided you can get them.

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To be quite honest I'm not sure the IOC are going to be that bothered what the hell its called provided you can get them.

 

Yeah I agree with you,

But if ISAF refuse to recognise the torch for a while will it not be allowed in? Cause it's about time they changed the boat anyway...

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The only way this might become a mess is if the ILCA don’t agree to morph into the Torch. That would then leave the Laser with no boat builders or suppliers of parts. ILCA has now stopped issuing builders plaques to LPE, even if it was due to a directive of ISAF. And for all that is in the Class Association constitution, as with any International class, the rules are the domain of ISAF. I believe that if the ILCA don't step into line, ISAF has enough power to bypass them. The one thing ISAF won't want at this moment of time is a hiatus with an Olympic class. The process of changing classes at this stage, after the IOC has approved the Rio boats, would almost impossible. It would probably lead to a loss of an event and ISAF aren't going to let that happen. The line of least resistance would be for ISAF to vote to acknowledge the Torch at the half year meeting (May). After all, ISAF chose a particular boat, not a class association.

One thing that seems to have come out from the recent comments is that, at the moment, the Advisory Council is only the 2 representatives of the Class Association, because in a clever mover, all licences to build the Laser have been terminated, even to those parties who are on BK's side. Therefore, the builders do not have a seat at the table! While a few at the top of the class might be pig headed, ultimately I don't think they have anywhere to go and I suspect they have until May before ISAF takes the matter out of their hands.

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I would imagine that this will get brutal because:1) Rastregar has already started his LP United organizations to go around the class associations. 2) The Laser is one of 14 boats that they build and they have dealer agreements and a distribution system. I can easily imagine that the dealers will be put on notice that if they support the Torch, they will will loose the other boats in the line up. A dealer that, for example, sells a lot of Sunfish and/or other boats in the line up may have to make a tough decision. 3) Are club level sailors, many of whom do not belong to the class going to care who is sailing a boat with an ISAF sticker on it when they don't care if the sails and blades are class legal?

 

OTOH, the dealers I know have no great love for Laser Performance and if Lasers make up a big percentage of their sales they may jump on the Torch wagon. Zim and other builders may pick up the C420, CFJ, and Opti market.

 

Personally I hope Bruce Kirby prevails because the intellectual property rights of all designers are at stake. If Rastregar wins this, everyone else looses.

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Times are tough out there. Jeff Martin will not go down without a fight.

 

http://www.laserinternational.org/info/brucekirbyincannoucement

 

The ILCA should ratify a new class name and we should quickly move on.

 

The ILCA should not have taken sides against the designer of the very boat that puts food on their tables.

 

I voted against the wishes of the ILCA last year when many members were borderline tricked into voting to allow the illegal production of Lasers agaisnt the wishes of Kirby. The ILCA has exposed all members to further legal dangers and legal costs, all in the name of defending the rights of a company that pays no royalties and had zero interest in the class other than as a cash cow.

 

Jeff Martin should resign once this debacle is over, if not sooner, before even more harm befalls the class.

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I would imagine that this will get brutal because:1) Rastregar has already started his LP United organizations to go around the class associations. 2) The Laser is one of 14 boats that they build and they have dealer agreements and a distribution system. I can easily imagine that the dealers will be put on notice that if they support the Torch, they will will loose the other boats in the line up. A dealer that, for example, sells a lot of Sunfish and/or other boats in the line up may have to make a tough decision. 3) Are club level sailors, many of whom do not belong to the class going to care who is sailing a boat with an ISAF sticker on it when they don't care if the sails and blades are class legal?

 

OTOH, the dealers I know have no great love for Laser Performance and if Lasers make up a big percentage of their sales they may jump on the Torch wagon. Zim and other builders may pick up the C420, CFJ, and Opti market.

 

Personally I hope Bruce Kirby prevails because the intellectual property rights of all designers are at stake. If Rastregar wins this, everyone else looses.

 

Granted there may be some faults with the ILCA, but do you think Laser Peformance is really capable of running a class organization that caters to the needs of everyday sailors?

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Granted there may be some faults with the ILCA, but do you think Laser Peformance is really capable of running a class organization that caters to the needs of everyday sailors?

 

No I don't. Firstly, they are not global and secondly they can not sell boats that ISAF will recognize as an ISAF class and nor is it likely that they will ever be ratified as a class.

 

What Kirby is trying to do will essentially make the Laser name worthless to own. He is betting that the value of the boat lies in the design not the name. Sailors will support him.

 

If the ILCA does not get on board they are done for and a new class association will be established.

 

The fact that ISAF has told ILCA to not issue any more plaques shows very clearly which way the wind is now blowing.

 

ILCA needs to stop being stubborn over this issue and embrace this change.

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What makes you think Jeff Martin is the leader in this position choice by the ILCA?? Jeff is an employee.

Fine Gouv. The whole world council then. Someone has to take the blame for letting this situation degenerate to this point.

 

People just want to go sail and Kirby is trying to put this whole house in order before he dies. We should be on bended knees to this guy who at his age is trying to ensure the legacy of his design lives on for many years to come. With the right builders and a clean start of trademarks, the class should be good to go for many years yet.

 

Lets face it, it is a mess. Builders snubbing their nose at the designer and telling him to go screw himself. A class association that recommended members vote a certain way without providing adequate information of what they were voting for.

 

Kirby is saying that this situation is unresolvable in its present form and we would be wise to listen.

 

The ILCA announcement is about par for the course.

 

Let me break it down for you.

 

The International Laser Class Association (ILCA) is disappointed to learn about the actions by Bruce Kirby Inc concerning the introduction of a new class association whilst there is an unresolved legal dispute between Bruce Kirby Inc and some Laser builders.

 

I am sure they are disappointed. They are not getting their way and the "some laser builders" are the ones that they supported over Kirby when they asked members to vote and the same ones that it now appears have made batches of now declared illegal boats which is still up in the air. Were the plaques issued for these boats legal? Do the owners of these boats have any recourse to ISAF and the ILCA for their purchases?

 

The ILCA continues to believe that it is necessary to resolve the current legal issues before considering possible alternatives, and remains committed to working towards a resolution.

 

I have no doubt that they would like a resolution to this issue but unless that resolution includes something about paying the designer of the boat what he is owed both retrospectively and going forward I suspect it will not be resolved. They had no right to try and remove all obligations to Kirby with some shifty vote slipped past the members and I can understand how he is justifiably angry at that action.

 

This is really a simple issue at its heart. A non complying builder and a complicit class association trying for their own reasons, to make out that the real value of the laser is the trademarks and as long as identical hulls etc are available the class could continue just fine with boats made without the designers approval. If you had been told that your design is worthless and the the trademarks are the only thing of value I bet you would be pissed too.

 

A little respect for Kirby in that announcement is in order I think. You attempt to shaft him and then when he takes what action he feels he needs to to protect his work you cry that you are disappointed. I suspect he is a little more than disappointed.

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What would be a reasonable time estimate for this to go through the courts? One year? Two? Three?

 

Get to 2016, and it will be lots of fun in Brazil.

- ISAF not issuing plaques to new Lasers.

- Probable injunction against anyone building a boat to the 'Laser manual' whilst the case is in progress.

- The Torch not a recognised international class, or the class selected for the Olympics.

 

Great opportunity for the Moth to have a mens and womens class in Brazil. (Just lock in the Mach 2 as the OD for the event - keep the class as development otherwise.)

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What would be a reasonable time estimate for this to go through the courts? One year? Two? Three?

 

Get to 2016, and it will be lots of fun in Brazil.

- ISAF not issuing plaques to new Lasers.

- Probable injunction against anyone building a boat to the 'Laser manual' whilst the case is in progress.

- The Torch not a recognised international class, or the class selected for the Olympics.

 

Great opportunity for the Moth to have a mens and womens class in Brazil. (Just lock in the Mach 2 as the OD for the event - keep the class as development otherwise.)

 

Your last point is not without merit but It wont happen of course.

 

If this goes down the legal route, dragging class and sailors along for the ride, it would have to be at least 2 years of stuffing around and irrespective of the time constraints, much confusion and expense for all parties involved.

 

ISAF is not going to expose itself to any danger by issuing plaques till this is settled one way or another, that much you can be sure of.

 

International recognition could happen very quickly once all the paperwork is in order.

 

There is no easy solution if the class wishes to go forward with the Laser™ name as it is doubtful if the holder of that name in some regions even has the capacity to build new boats that comply.

 

Lets pick a new name, go with the builders Kirby believes will support the class and go sailing.

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Olympic Class: I don't think the classification of the Torch would be an issue for Olympic sanction, as the Torch design will qualify by Rule measurement criteria. The Finn as an example has far greater latitude in Rule measurement tolerances than the Torch / Laser, and successfully is raced as a one design class.

I doubt that if the Finn was to change name to Sarby it would be out of the next Olympics.

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The people in the moth class are unlikely to favour olympic moths. They are development people running their own class, and are unlikely to change class rules to accommodate IOC requirements. There is no Mach2 class organisation or class status with ISAF so its a long way from being selected. Even if a moth is ultimately chosen the 4 year selection lead time for each olympics would make the boats obsolete moths by the time racing started. If they had been selected for London they would have been Bladeriders not Mach2s. There was only one Bladerider racing in the 114 boat fleet at the last WC one week after London. Moth development moves on and will continue to do so. Its all happenned before, the near defunct Europe was a breakaway moth class.

The Laser sailors class will survive in some form, the sport needs it to. It also deserves to remain in the olympics as its the most representative of the most popular form of dinghy sailing, the biggest class and the widest spread. More so than any of the other classes. The people who enjoy racing them need to take control, and Kirby's Torch option seems like a reasonable way to go. The members and not the exec need to decide if ILCA will go along for the ride or fight it, its their class and they should decide. They have the opportunity to have builders servicing the class and its members not controlling them or fighting over it.

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The people who enjoy racing them need to take control, and Kirby's Torch option seems like a reasonable way to go. The members and not the exec need to decide if ILCA will go along for the ride or fight it, its their class and they should decide. They have the opportunity to have builders servicing the class and its members not controlling them or fighting over it.

 

Agreed.

 

I am all for builders making a profit and being viable but when builders start to think that they are the class and the people sailing them are just the poor saps who have no choice, something has to give.

 

Hell, when I think about it that ship has long sailed, they think they are the main reason the Laser class even exists.

 

I would not even care if the class lost its Olympic status. It may even improve fleet numbers in some instances.

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The only way this might become a mess is if the ILCA don’t agree to morph into the Torch. That would then leave the Laser with no boat builders or suppliers of parts. ILCA has now stopped issuing builders plaques to LPE, even if it was due to a directive of ISAF. And for all that is in the Class Association constitution, as with any International class, the rules are the domain of ISAF. I believe that if the ILCA don't step into line, ISAF has enough power to bypass them. The one thing ISAF won't want at this moment of time is a hiatus with an Olympic class. The process of changing classes at this stage, after the IOC has approved the Rio boats, would almost impossible. It would probably lead to a loss of an event and ISAF aren't going to let that happen. The line of least resistance would be for ISAF to vote to acknowledge the Torch at the half year meeting (May). After all, ISAF chose a particular boat, not a class association.

One thing that seems to have come out from the recent comments is that, at the moment, the Advisory Council is only the 2 representatives of the Class Association, because in a clever mover, all licences to build the Laser have been terminated, even to those parties who are on BK's side. Therefore, the builders do not have a seat at the table! While a few at the top of the class might be pig headed, ultimately I don't think they have anywhere to go and I suspect they have until May before ISAF takes the matter out of their hands.

 

I like your take on this. Additionally, there is the fact that Kirby's new organisation has effectively grandfathered all Lasers into the new class organisation. If ISAF takes a firm stand and continues its support for Kirby and the Torch Class then ILCA is superfluous and redundant.

 

Of course as others have noted here ISAF will shy away from a situation where the litigious Mr. Rastegar would seek an injunction to stop use of Torch dinghies in the Olympics on the grounds that his commercial rights have been trampled.

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Well let's give RASTEGAR one accolade... He seems to have united sailors from all across the globe on one opinion- it's a shame Kirby had to do this, but do this he must for sake of the sailors sailing his boat and the good of the wider sailing community who are grateful for the designers who make it all possible.

 

Move with ILCA- FFs.... don't drag it out any further!!!!

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Shouldn't there now be a Laser Anarchy sub-forum? I mean really, it's literally what we've got right now.

It'd probably have more activity in it than mini anarchy....

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We had 18 of them out on a light Wednesday evening race last night.

 

Chat in the boat park was interesting... general vibe was 'shame about the shit name*, but can we get on with it now'.

 

I'm surprised the stance of the ILCA, I wonder what their members would actually think if they were polled.

 

 

 

* sounds like a name for a red-haired pornstar from Nashville

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ILCA has now stopped issuing builders plaques to LPE, even if it was due to a directive of ISAF.

 

Is there evidence it was due to a directive from ISAF? It's possible - just asking as I've seen nothing to that effect.

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ILCA has now stopped issuing builders plaques to LPE, even if it was due to a directive of ISAF.

 

Is there evidence it was due to a directive from ISAF? It's possible - just asking as I've seen nothing to that effect.

Almost every report I have read has said this. To quote one

 

"On March 25th Legal Counsel for ISAF Jon Napier wrote to Jeff Martin the Executive Secretary of ILCA requesting that ILCA cease to issue ISAF plaques to LaserPerformance (Europe) Limited and Quarter Moon Inc. (the 'Builders') with immediate effect. The reason for this decision is that ISAF has concluded, based on the correspondence and court papers received from Bruce Kirby’s attorneys, that the Builders are no longer licensed by Bruce Kirby and/or Bruce Kirby Inc. to build the Laser class boat (as required by the 1983 ISAF Agreement and the 1992 Plaque Agreement)."

 

Sail-world.com even reports that the ILCA has ceased to supply the plaques, as per the ISAF directive.

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One could see a chance in this mess for the ILCA to finally emancipate itself from a few companies revenue interests and from Kirby (and, hopefully not soon, his heirs) by defining class legal boats as Lasers up to a certain hull/plaque-number and from then on simply by “produced by builders licensed by the class” to the specs of Lasers under the old rules etc, independent of trade mark and other IP rights, may they be held by LPE, one of Rastegars other endeavors, BK, BK Inc. or whomever. The reference to the construction manual wouldn’t be necessary either in my eyes, if ILCA members would trust their officers to chose the “right” builder. Keeping the reference wouldn’t hurt either though.

 

ILCA and BK would then have to agree on one or more builder(s), supposing the design as such is somehow legally protected or the use or reference to the construction manual is legally protected (which I strongly doubt). Or the ILCA could choose to pay some royalty-like fee to BK without obligation to do so or try and buy the design rights from him, if only for symbolic reasons. In any case, ILCA could end the unhealthy dependency of the class on a few greedy people who hold trademark rights that have nothing to do with the intended definition of class legal equipment.

 

Or, in other words, keep the SM in SMOD but let the class make the choice who the SM is.

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Sail-world.com even reports that the ILCA has ceased to supply the plaques, as per the ISAF directive.

 

So it does. I read it too quickly.

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One could see a chance in this mess for the ILCA to finally emancipate itself from a few companies revenue interests and from Kirby (and, hopefully not soon, his heirs) by defining class legal boats as Lasers up to a certain hull/plaque-number and from then on simply by “produced by builders licensed by the class” to the specs of Lasers under the old rules etc, independent of trade mark and other IP rights, may they be held by LPE, one of Rastegars other endeavors, BK, BK Inc. or whomever. The reference to the construction manual wouldn’t be necessary either in my eyes, if ILCA members would trust their officers to chose the “right” builder. Keeping the reference wouldn’t hurt either though.

 

ILCA and BK would then have to agree on one or more builder(s), supposing the design as such is somehow legally protected or the use or reference to the construction manual is legally protected (which I strongly doubt). Or the ILCA could choose to pay some royalty-like fee to BK without obligation to do so or try and buy the design rights from him, if only for symbolic reasons. In any case, ILCA could end the unhealthy dependency of the class on a few greedy people who hold trademark rights that have nothing to do with the intended definition of class legal equipment.

 

Or, in other words, keep the SM in SMOD but let the class make the choice who the SM is.

 

That basically goes back to the original proposal floated by the class two years ago, which quite frankly might be the easiest way out of this mess.

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...except that the ILCA proposed the emancipation from Kirby's direct influence not from the trademark holders if I remember correctly.

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One could see a chance in this mess for the ILCA to finally emancipate itself from a few companies revenue interests and from Kirby

That may not be a good idea...Looking at the constitution and what is publicly visible of the contracts what I see is a complex mesh of agreements where all the parties have rights and privileges, there are all sorts of checks and balances, and its in everyone's interests to work together. The builders, because they own the trademarks, can confidently invest in the class and all the rest of it. In the main this has worked pretty well for the last 40 odd years, and it means, for instance that the various Laser Associations get a measure of financial support from the builders that much more independent classes such as the ones I've been involved in can only dream of. Admittedly my classes wouldn't have wanted the restrictions that come with the money, but you can't deny the model has worked.

 

Quite what LPE thought they were up to when they apparently sought to break this mesh of agreements is something we'll only start to see in May, which is when they have to file their first reply to the complaint (at least according to court schedules I've seen). What we are seeing at the moment is the checks on breaking the agreements coming into force, and as you'd expect its something of an "everyone loses" situation: it has to be really.

 

I'm wondering if the move of rights to Global Sailing triggered this in that I've seen suggestions that PS Australia were doing some slightly dubious deals in LPE territory. If LPE saw the checks and balances getting wobbly because Global Sailing and subsidiaries were going to be both a manufacturer and the design owner, and also saw a GS subsidiary attempting to undercut them in their own territories, well maybe you can understand them feeling aggrieved and taking some kind of action. Unfortunately they don't seem to have understood quite what they were getting into with the complexities of class organisation and all the rest of it: maybe they didn't have a well informed sailor involved in doing the thinking.

 

But the previous paragraph is all complete speculation and more than likely nonsense. We'll know more eventually, but probably never know exactly what people were thinking...

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Ask ILCA to consider it - sign this petition:

 

http://www.change.org/petitions/international-laser-class-association-consider-adopting-itself-as-the-torch-class

 

This purpose of this petition is to to ask the International Laser Class Association to consider all of the options available, and not to rule anything out without consulting the very membership they are there to serve.

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a. FR has made and sold millions of strollers from china, if production issues crop up where do you think production will go?

b. Emanicipate from BK? What, laser sailors are slaves? maybe donkeys or sheep but hardly slaves.

c. ilca is like any other bureacracy at this point, less and less about the sailing.

d. lawyers and sailing, not a good thing for non-billionaires, and for those concerned with time or quality outcomes.

e. strict adherence to the construction manual so that all futures boats are built as shitty as all past boats?

f. what about the scheduled upgrades to equipment so that one can sail solo offshore in puff without jeopardy? or should we just buy the optional finger covers?

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Ask ILCA to consider it - sign this petition:

 

http://www.change.org/petitions/international-laser-class-association-consider-adopting-itself-as-the-torch-class

 

This purpose of this petition is to to ask the International Laser Class Association to consider all of the options available, and not to rule anything out without consulting the very membership they are there to serve.

 

 

....you're giving the class administrators a LOT of credit,,,,do you really think they feel there's -any- problem yet???? <_<

 

......and 'consult the membership'??!?..........this has got april1 written all over it!!! :lol::lol:

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Interesting developments, going faster than I imagined. Very good info on http://www.sail-world.com/Europe/The-Kirby-Torch---Latest-news-after-Laser-lawsuit/108308

 

I really think Bruce Kirby has the interests of the sailors at heart. Of course the boat wont be the Kirby Torch, it will be the Torch I am sure.

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Have any lasers been sold to the public that aren't plaqued? And if so, then Kirby is just letting the ones produced illegally slide?

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I love the fact that the sail number can lose a few zeros and it's 2016 - the year of the first Torch Olympic Regatta if all goes to plan for Kirby

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Have any lasers been sold to the public that aren't plaqued? And if so, then Kirby is just letting the ones produced illegally slide?

 

That's where it all gets confusing... Without plaques they are not *International* Lasers, so they shouldn't be described as that, but LPE still own trademarks and have rights to sell Laser branded dinghies from all the rest of their range. From what Kirby says there's no real design IP, and we've seen aspects of the Laser design, most notably the sails, cloned by other manufacturers which tends to back that up. So on the surface there seems to be no reason why Laser Performance shouldn't go on marketing and selling Laser Performance Laser dinghies unless (and its unless in capital letters and heavily underlined) there are termination clauses in the contracts that prevent them doing so and which are not subject to endless argument by lawyers.

 

So it seems to me in my ignorance that LPE are most likely to carry on producing Laser Performance Laser dinghies which for the moment at least will be identical in specification to International Laser dinghies. At this point heaps more complications come into it, not the least being the statement I've seen made here that the ILCA owns the tooling for the spar extrusions... I'll just make one prediction - early in the court case each party will produce submissions (or whatever they are called) to the court asking for the other to be prohibited from continuing manufacture due to the irreparable harm that will be done if they are allowed to continue.

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This might be a more appropriate logo...

 

post-1974-0-68215100-1365722830.png

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Aww yeah check it out! us Canadians already have the Torchattachicon.gif406.JPG

 

Is that an intensity sail on there?

It sure as shit is.

wow, a radial clew with leech hollow between battens, something is wrong here...

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I have become majorly confused in all this about who's making what and how and who's got upset with it... Does anyone mind providing me a summary of what's gone down so far? I promise I'll keep up with it after that!

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Great opportunity for the Moth to have a mens and womens class in Brazil. (Just lock in the Mach 2 as the OD for the event - keep the class as development otherwise.)

 

Now that might help make sailing cool again - and while you're about it add kitesurfing to the Olympics too!

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I have become majorly confused in all this about who's making what and how and who's got upset with it... Does anyone mind providing me a summary of what's gone down so far? I promise I'll keep up with it after that!

Bad bad things.

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I have become majorly confused in all this about who's making what and how and who's got upset with it... Does anyone mind providing me a summary of what's gone down so far? I promise I'll keep up with it after that!

 

 

I have become majorly confused in all this about who's making what and how and who's got upset with it... Does anyone mind providing me a summary of what's gone down so far? I promise I'll keep up with it after that!

 

The most accurate and straightforward no-bullshit version comes from Bruce Kirby http://www.kirbytorch.com/history.

 

He's chucked a pretty big rock in the pond.

 

Forget all the debate about the legality of copyright, class manuals, plaques, etc. Back in the beginning Kirby inked an agreement with the first builder, Ian Bruce, requiring a small royalty on every boat delivered. That agreement has been honoured basically by a succession of builders around the world until a couple of years ago when the guy owning the European and American builders stopped paying the royalties. ISAF and ILCA are complicit in all this because they are responsible for issuing class-legal plaques.

 

After extensive efforts to sort stuff out Kirby has asserted his rights, is suing the defaulting builders with the exception of the Australian builder. At the same time he's renamed his little boat The Torch and has set up a new builder network including the Ozzers, and announced that the new class will grandfather all existing class-legal Lasers.

 

ISAF has fallen into line. ILCA is stonewalling. Olympic status is unclear. Stay tuned.

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money ...power...egos...they mixed and the usual shit has followed.

 

This is what happens when the class is MANUFACTURER CONTROLLED and it gains Olympic status. Nacra, take notice..

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money ...power...egos...they mixed and the usual shit has followed.

 

This is what happens when the class is MANUFACTURER CONTROLLED and it gains Olympic status. Nacra, take notice..

Sorry, but you don't seem to understand what is happening and the differences between the situations. The Nacra 17 is what is known as a single manufacturer one design (SMOD). The Laser is not. It is simply a one design with licenced builders. The situation we are seeing with the Laser couldn't happen with the Nacra 17.

 

In addition, the Laser is not a manufacturer controlled class. The class rules are controlled, ultimately, by ISAF, the rights to the Laser name are controlled by some of the manufacturers and the right to build class compliant boats is controlled by the designer. What we are seeing happening is because the class isn't manufactuer controlled and seems that a manufacturer who decided that he did control the class is about to find out the hard way that he does not.

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seems that a manufacturer who decided that he did control the class may be about to find out the hard way that he does not.

 

we really don't know how the court case will go do we?

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seems that a manufacturer who decided that he did control the class may be about to find out the hard way that he does not.

 

we really don't know how the court case will go do we?

It doesn't matter how the court case goes. That's the really clever thing about this. Even if the court finds in favour of LPE not having to pay royalties to BK, that doesn't mean they can build class legal boats. the class rule is very specific on this - only boats built by a builder who has an agreement with BK can be class legal. That is what the whole class rule change battle was about last year. The ham fisted attempt to change that rule failed. ISAF has clearly acknowledged the rule by both ensuring it wasn't changed and now ensuring that it is being enforced. So, even f they win, all LPE will be able to do is to sell a boat to BK's design that they call a Laser, but which isn't legal to sail in Laser class association events or in Olympic classes events. I don't believe that there is any way that LPE can force ILCA and ISAF to change that class rule. And don't forget, this is a battle between one of the builders and BK, with the other builders falling in line with BK.

It's taken me a while to get my head around the whole thing, but I really do believe that LPE are screwed. What I am struggling with is understanding the ILCA position. Maybe they haven't yet fully appreciated where this is going, but they need to and fast, or else events will sweep them away. I suspect that people from ISAF are already trying to explain it all to those who matter and I bet that with a fairly short time, we will see a statement from the ILCA saying that the committee support the BK move. After all, they have no class legal builder any more.

Is this the end of the Laser name, as applied to the Kirby Dinghy? I suspect not. The "Torch" name is the instrument to break LPE. The only thing of value that LPE has now is the rights to the name, but that isn't worth anything at all if they cannot build a boat to that name, or if boats of that name aren't class legal. LPE are left with some valueless assets - a set (or 2) of Kirby Dinghy moulds that they may or may not be legally allowed to use but which, even if they are, aren't going to help them a lot and the name. Potentially, they also have a significant liability, namely back payment of royalties to BK, plus his costs and maybe even damages to the tune of the costs of changing the association name etc. It wouldn't surprise me if we see an agreement which allows the class to keep the "Laser" name in return for the law case going away.

Or has anybody got a scenario that says LPE can do anything to stop all of this?

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seems that a manufacturer who decided that he did control the class may be about to find out the hard way that he does not.

we really don't know how the court case will go do we?

Jury trial in the USA ... 80+ year old Canadian/American designer who has been a part of the class for 40 years vs. Iranian billionaire with puzzling business practices ... JURY TRIAL ... USA ... hello?

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seems that a manufacturer who decided that he did control the class may be about to find out the hard way that he does not.

 

we really don't know how the court case will go do we?

It doesn't matter how the court case goes. That's the really clever thing about this. Even if the court finds in favour of LPE not having to pay royalties to BK, that doesn't mean they can build class legal boats. the class rule is very specific on this - only boats built by a builder who has an agreement with BK can be class legal. That is what the whole class rule change battle was about last year. The ham fisted attempt to change that rule failed. ISAF has clearly acknowledged the rule by both ensuring it wasn't changed and now ensuring that it is being enforced. So, even f they win, all LPE will be able to do is to sell a boat to BK's design that they call a Laser, but which isn't legal to sail in Laser class association events or in Olympic classes events. I don't believe that there is any way that LPE can force ILCA and ISAF to change that class rule. And don't forget, this is a battle between one of the builders and BK, with the other builders falling in line with BK.

It's taken me a while to get my head around the whole thing, but I really do believe that LPE are screwed. What I am struggling with is understanding the ILCA position. Maybe they haven't yet fully appreciated where this is going, but they need to and fast, or else events will sweep them away. I suspect that people from ISAF are already trying to explain it all to those who matter and I bet that with a fairly short time, we will see a statement from the ILCA saying that the committee support the BK move. After all, they have no class legal builder any more.

Is this the end of the Laser name, as applied to the Kirby Dinghy? I suspect not. The "Torch" name is the instrument to break LPE. The only thing of value that LPE has now is the rights to the name, but that isn't worth anything at all if they cannot build a boat to that name, or if boats of that name aren't class legal. LPE are left with some valueless assets - a set (or 2) of Kirby Dinghy moulds that they may or may not be legally allowed to use but which, even if they are, aren't going to help them a lot and the name. Potentially, they also have a significant liability, namely back payment of royalties to BK, plus his costs and maybe even damages to the tune of the costs of changing the association name etc. It wouldn't surprise me if we see an agreement which allows the class to keep the "Laser" name in return for the law case going away.

Or has anybody got a scenario that says LPE can do anything to stop all of this?

 

 

I like your take on this, Simon. Pretty much as I see it. I'm impressed by Kirby's strategies.

 

What can LPE do? Well, its owner appears to have shown scant regard for the niceties when it comes to the baby carriage business and its reasonable to believe that he'll be equally bloody minded when it comes to the Laser case. And we know how this stuff can drag on; witness ADM and GGYC before the NY State Supreme Court.

 

Still Kirby has cast a wide net in his legal action, naming LPE, Quarter Moon and their owner Farzad Rastegar amongst others. He may have set the groundwork for a negotiated settlement.

 

An aside: has anyone noted the irony in this international saga that Kirby and Rastegar's places of business are about a mile and a half apart in neighbouring towns on the Connecticut Turnpike?

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This is what happens when the class is MANUFACTURER CONTROLLED and it gains Olympic status. Nacra, take notice..

Sorry, but you don't seem to understand what is happening and the differences between the situations. The Nacra 17 is what is known as a single manufacturer one design (SMOD). The Laser is not. It is simply a one design with licenced builders. The situation we are seeing with the Laser couldn't happen with the Nacra 17.

 

In addition, the Laser is not a manufacturer controlled class. The class rules are controlled, ultimately, by ISAF, the rights to the Laser name are controlled by some of the manufacturers and the right to build class compliant boats is controlled by the designer. What we are seeing happening is because the class isn't manufactuer controlled and seems that a manufacturer who decided that he did control the class is about to find out the hard way that he does not.

 

 

SimonN, I'm very well aware of the differences.

Many here are simply taking sides, but don't see the bigger picture.

 

IMHO, like everywhere else in this life:

Multiple choices - good, single choice - bad.

Competition - good, monopoly - bad.

 

Give a single manufacturer or designer an Olympic ticket and it's a recipe for a disaster. Sonner or later.

 

As to the Laser not being a manufacturer controlled class, well:

 

http://www.ps2000.ca/html/co_team.htm

 

Ian Bruce

Ian, best known as the father of the Laser, was twice World Champion in the International 14, two-time Olympic sailor in the Finn and the Star, a Laser District Champion and a North American Champion in the Laser 28 and the Tasar. He has also built 12 International or Recognized Classes (see Company History) and lead the team that drafted the first-ever set of rules (Laser) to be accepted by the ISAF for a manufacturer controlled Class. These rules have been copied by dozens of Classes since but it was his experience in this area that helped the Byte become the first dinghy to receive ISAF Recognized Status.

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Or has anybody got a scenario that says LPE can do anything to stop all of this?

Ask me in June when I've seen LPE's response to Kirby's complaint. Either LPE have been spectacularly naive and totally blindsided by a strategy - the name change - that has been mooted in public for at least two years, or else they have something up their sleeve in the fine detail of all the contracts that hasn't occurred to any of us yet.

 

An awful lot of this depends on what is in the termination clauses in the contracts. Can LPE still build boats that look exactly like International Lasers if they no longer have a contract with Kirby, ILCA and ISAF? If they can they can most certainly call them Lasers and you could have International Kirby Torches and Laser Performance Lasers both on the market at the same time, possibly with the two slowly diverging, at least in rigs.

 

Don't forget that LPE have already dived out of at least three continuing classes, the Laser 2000, 3000 and SB3, which have all had consequent name changes, and that even if they were willing to abandon involvement in the Laser/Radial/4.7 they would still have an awful lot invested in the Laser brand and trademark for their rotomoulded products, which probably sell pretty well for a lot less hassle.

 

So even if LPE do plan to walk out of the Laser class I see no way they be happy to abandon the Laser brand and trademarks. Who knows: maybe they could be angling for a humungous royalty to dwarf what Kirby got if the Laser name continues to be used?

 

I'd love to know what was in the presentation on the future of the class Mr Rastregar made to the ILCA last November.

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Seems to me that LPE can build J-24 shaped boats and call those boats laser. What LPE cannot do is put stickers on its products announcing an affiliation with Kirby.

 

ILCA class rules demand whoever builds toys for ILCA sanctioned races have a contract with kirby and the right to use the name Laser.

 

Summer camps that want a bunch of 14 sailboats have no such requirements.

 

Are there any comntracts that obligate whoever owns teh laser logos and sial insignia rights to ALSO build toys as defined by Kirby and teh ILCA?? I have no idea.

 

Seems to me the Torch is an attempt by Kirby to reset the clock to 1972. As a consumer, sailor, racer, class member, past class officer,Past District secretary, past fleet captain, current regatta host, I have absolutely no problem with renaming the boat so the class can get a re-start and have the logos and design rights and rules of manufacture all owned by one entity.

 

Were I in a position to do so I would negotiate with Kirby for absolutely defined required racing game support by any builder.

 

Examples would be:

1. An agreement to provide the class with funds to give a free year of membership to each new boat owner.

2. An agreement with the builder to PROVIDE THE CLASS WITH THE NAME, ADDRESS, and contact information of the new owner or EVERY boat sold.

3. An agreement with each builder to provide brand new boats for charter at the world championship on a rotating basis.

4. An agreement from the Class to set up fleets and maintain an easily accessible listing of all fleet officer contact information. ( Web pages with clickable maps and printed listings and an annual publication to all members and host cluns would suffice,

5. An agreement with the Class to publish and regularly update a complete listing of every event in the world where Torches are welcome. Publication would include a webpage as described above and minimum annual printed publication in a printed and mailed form. The class would be responbasble for gathering the information before December 1 for teh following year and publishing that infromation such that delivery to members and others described is accomplished by January 15.

6. An agreement with the clas to publish a quarterly newsletter and send that newsletter to:

a. All members

b. all fleet captains and district secretaries

c. all regatta hosts

d. all hosting organizations for fleets and regattas.

 

That isn't all, in fact ther is lots more and I simply do not have time to type it all right now, but it would be a start and demonstrates what I think is fundamental to establishing, promoting, maintaining and managing the international Torch game.

So are you volunteering for the position of President of the new ITCA? Given the ICLA's lack of response, I believe that position is open. Or perhaps Executive Secretary is the position with the power.

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I think this shows the lack of understanding of what constitutes the ´brand´. Kirby understands that the brand is the boat, the design. LPE does not understand this. Take Rolex as an example. To change the name would be impossible. And it would take many useless watches before people understood that the brand had changed if other watches were sold as Rolex. Sell another singlehander as laser and no-one will buy it.

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I rather like Simon's take on this, however I'm not convinced there isn't a trick or two left up Rastegar's sleeve- look at the firm appointed to defend him, they're not lightweight judging by the resumes.

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I'm sure LPE will pull something out of someone's hat, if not to win then at least to delay this long enough. Maybe they'll reach a mental state that says "if I can't have this position, I'll make it hell for anyone else who wants it" with the hope that long legal nonsense kills the olympic status of the boat (I figure that as with much else in sailing, the Olympics are a BIG cash cow for the builder).

 

Meanwhile, it will be interesting to see what ISAF/ILCA do/say. They actually have some amount of leverage being able to say "settle down everyone or we're pulling the sanction plug on all of you", even if they can't realistically afford it, they do have the ability to say it and try to keep some control over the issue (though I doubt they will)...

 

Well, at least it should give something to the Aussies to entertain them all winter, maybe even for us northern-hemisphere guys next time we're stuck in a no-sailing season...

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There is no apology for the length of this post. Please consider what I have written and add your best advice. I believe, It is in the best interest of racing sailors everywhere that some boat be successfully distributed to all sailing venues for use in a worldwide one design racing game. Pooling our ideas can't hurt.

 

 

Seems to me .... Blah blah blah.....

So are you volunteering for the position of President of the new ITCA? Given the ICLA's lack of response, I believe that position is open. Or perhaps Executive Secretary is the position with the power.

Am I offering to serve as the pawn of anyone??

Not at all and I refuse to be silenced by tactics such as yours. (I dont think you did it on purpose)I don't care if you are part of the evil force that would love to kill sailing or just not aware how yoir cpmments voild rven cause problems.It was counterproductive

Your comment, sweetly presented, is the same old " either fix it yourself or shut the fuck up" rhetoric we so often see.

it is misplaced to believe a comment or suggestion from someone who has no interest in being involved is inferior to a suggestion or comment from someone who already is or wants to be in charge. The rush to disqualify outside contribution's result is we will all remain as slather assed lazy lemmings for those willing to run things but unwilling to run things correctly.

I am trying my very best, using the tools currently available to me, to inform someone who can cause things to happen to actually grasp what needs to be done and MAKE IT HAPPEN.

Yes I would be happy to set up and run the new Torch sailing game. I imagine that for a mid six figure salary, plus expenses, I might be willing to set up the builder agreements, class association, initial fleets, initial schedule and similar various necessary TOOLS the game will need to prosper.

I would willingly continue, if well compensated, to hold a position of overall Game / business CEO with power to terminate contracts and replace non performing entities.

The position is useless with lesser powers.

I learned in 2002 NEVER to work for anyone EVER again who could tell me how to do my job. More important, I will NEVER again be part of a system where part time temporary term volunteers who have no persomsl investments hold ultimate control over me while i am serving full time dedicating my life and assets to serving as a dedicated professional.

Incompetent but well meaning egotistical volunteers disassembled the best class association on the planet in 2002 and the Laser Sailing game, and sailing in general, may never recover from their well intentioned actions directed by their lack of knowledge.

I will NEVER be part of such a system again.

Would I accept an offer from Brice Kirby to serve as the Grand Imperial Wizard of the new Torch racing game?? If it paid a sufficient amount of money, and I saw sufficient power in my position to be able to cause the establishment of the game I know how to establish??? Hell yes!!

I love the game and the prospects of a new wonderful game but I blew over $100.000 of my assets on my last three year attempt to make the game wonderful and although I was succeeding beyond my wildest expectations and had built a wonderful base for a new boom in sailing, ignorant buffoons were able to disassemble that which I created and effectively squander my $100.000 investment. There's simply no way I would ever allow anyone to ever control my personal investments ever again for any reason period.

I am pretty certain I am one of the few if not the only guy on the planet who not only has the skills to do the job but gives a sufficient shit to actually consider tolerating the necessary interruption to his life necessary to cause the process to properly begin and actually grow to serve sailors on a worldwide basis.

The description of the person we need: some person who really does not wish to waste a minute of his time doing the work, does not wish to have the responsibility for even one second for such an enterprise, couldn't give a rat's ass about getting rich, but is willing to crush anyone or anything that stands in the way of making singlehanded sailing available to every person born on the planet. I am already an old man. The very first order of business would be to start my search for a trainable replacement. In fact that replacement MUST obviously demonstrate possession of the tools and enthusiasm necessary for self training or i shall not willingly train that individual..

I am spending the time writing this not because I want to hold the position but on hopes someone will wade through the long diatribe and find it irresistible to work for the creation of the position .

If nobody properly qualified and eager to perform is put in the position I envision, you can kiss the possibility of a world wide boom in fantastic one design singlehanded sailing good bye.

Maybe Kirby reads this forum and maybe he will comprehend the necessity for the establishment of the position.

Maybe he will also give a shit.

Maybe I will continue to run my fiberglass business. Recently I am having a grand time building new molds for other boats, pedicabs and three wheeled motorcycles. It's going to take one hell of a "Just what I want'" deal to rip me loose from my current fun.

Sorry I went so long with this rambling post. Unfortunately I don't know which of the above is the key point necessary to cause the intended result, or which of the above is just babbling.

I sure do love racing in giant fleets of identical boats and I love seeing other sailors playing other games after finding the game while playing with me.

How would you make the Torch brcomr the next worldwide phenenom???

Color me unaware. It wasn't a put up or shut up question or meant to be counterproductive. The ILCA isn't getting the job done. They keep making the wrong decisions (or no decisions). There is much apathy in the class but you sir are consistently passionate and no one can buy or silence you. It was a legitimate would you do it question and you have answered it. Putting you in charge is a radical idea that also makes sense. But, Kirby breaking away and starting a new class is also a radical idea that also makes sense. Perhaps you have a future together.

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Kirby is a cranky old man with his own opinions. Our phone conversations were simply wonderful and sometime we each even listened to one another.

I am certain he would rather retire than conduct this fight but he really thinks the valie of the results of the fight exceeds the value of his freedom to quit right now. I hope the activity is exercize causing his energy levels to improve and there fore extend his time on the sent

Without overstepping my position, you two sound like between the two of you the laser would be very successful. I wish you the best, in fact, as much as I don't like the laser I do recognize its place, and hope whoever ends up involved makes it all you envision it to be.

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I'm a little ignorant in this area but which side of the argument was proposing the new carbon top section and radial sail? Is this now a dead duck or is it still happening?

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Don't forget that LPE have already dived out of at least three continuing classes, the Laser 2000, 3000 and SB3

"Dived out"? Is it not more the case that the designers of those classes divorced Laser? That, at least, is the general account of events/rumour as far as the SB3/SB20 is concerned.

 

ISAF has - presumably - arrived at the view that a "Torch" and "Torch Radial" class at Rio is not an issue. Assuming that is the case, I find it hard to see a hole in Simon's argument. LPE will find itself the owner of some fairly worthless moulds and trademarks and few will mourn. Except, I guess, some blameless employees of the current builders. So it goes.

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I think this shows the lack of understanding of what constitutes the ´brand´. Kirby understands that the brand is the boat, the design.

Actually I'd really say the brand is the class rule, which is of course linked to Kirby.

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Potentially, they also have a significant liability, namely back payment of royalties to BK, plus his costs and maybe even damages to the tune of the costs of changing the association name etc.

That assumes going companies able to pay those liabilities. A very dubious assumption indeed if the "Torch" strategy is pursued to its logical conclusion. Have you been paying attention to the MacLaren buggy saga?

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There's one more twist in the whole "Torch" saga from the rules and regulations perspective..

 

What is "Torch" at this moment of time?

Is it ISAF recognized or international Class - NO.

Does active "Torch" Class/Owners association exist - most probably NOT.

Is "Torch" being actively raced - NO.

Is it being represented by at least 5 MNA's, each having at least 15 boats - NO.

And so on..

ISAF has very strenght criteria on how the Class can receive its designation, which is all laid out in:

ISAF Regulations PART III Classes and Rating Systems

10.ISAF CLASS ASSOCIATIONS

 

It is rather lenghty process and I don't see how "Torch" (as a "new" Class) can become the chosen Class for Rio, if all criteria, outlined in the above mentioned document, has to be fullfilled. Do you think the ISAF will ignore its own regulations?

 

Just my 2 cents.

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Do you think the ISAF will ignore its own regulations?

Not ignore, swerve gracefully past, by grandfathering Lasers.

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There's one more twist in the whole "Torch" saga from the rules and regulations perspective..

 

What is "Torch" at this moment of time?

Is it ISAF recognized or international Class - NO.

Does active "Torch" Class/Owners association exist - most probably NOT.

Is "Torch" being actively raced - NO.

Is it being represented by at least 5 MNA's, each having at least 15 boats - NO.

And so on..

ISAF has very strenght criteria on how the Class can receive its designation, which is all laid out in:

ISAF Regulations PART III Classes and Rating Systems

10.ISAF CLASS ASSOCIATIONS

 

It is rather lenghty process and I don't see how "Torch" (as a "new" Class) can become the chosen Class for Rio, if all criteria, outlined in the above mentioned document, has to be fullfilled. Do you think the ISAF will ignore its own regulations?

 

Just my 2 cents.

It works if the ILCA changes its name, it'll be the same entity still accepted by ISAF. If they don't then there will be much bickering about what's allowed and interpretations of specific rules. I'd imagine they want to keep the design around because to change the line up now is difficult bordering on impossible, but one never knows with ISAF...

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Potentially, they also have a significant liability, namely back payment of royalties to BK, plus his costs and maybe even damages to the tune of the costs of changing the association name etc.

That assumes going companies able to pay those liabilities. A very dubious assumption indeed if the "Torch" strategy is pursued to its logical conclusion. Have you been paying attention to the MacLaren buggy saga?

I know rather a lot about what happened with Maclaren as the original family were friends of my uncle and i therefore followed what went on.

 

While nothing would surprise me with this guy, I think he would have a few problems with getting out of the liabilities with LPE, because he is named in the case. I think that the basic argument being made by BK is that Rastegar has deliberately tried to get out of contractual obligations by through his cations and therefore shoulkd be held personally responsable. I believe that if a dircetor of a company does that, they can be held personally liable (although I don't know about the exact law in the particular jurisdiction). It seems pretty obvious to me that BK is going after Rastegar personally so that he cannot play the same games as he did at Maclaren.

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There's one more twist in the whole "Torch" saga from the rules and regulations perspective..

 

What is "Torch" at this moment of time?

Is it ISAF recognized or international Class - NO.

Does active "Torch" Class/Owners association exist - most probably NOT.

Is "Torch" being actively raced - NO.

Is it being represented by at least 5 MNA's, each having at least 15 boats - NO.

And so on..

ISAF has very strenght criteria on how the Class can receive its designation, which is all laid out in:

ISAF Regulations PART III Classes and Rating Systems

10.ISAF CLASS ASSOCIATIONS

 

It is rather lenghty process and I don't see how "Torch" (as a "new" Class) can become the chosen Class for Rio, if all criteria, outlined in the above mentioned document, has to be fullfilled. Do you think the ISAF will ignore its own regulations?

 

Just my 2 cents.

It works if the ILCA changes its name, it'll be the same entity still accepted by ISAF. If they don't then there will be much bickering about what's allowed and interpretations of specific rules. I'd imagine they want to keep the design around because to change the line up now is difficult bordering on impossible, but one never knows with ISAF...

Agreed

 

This is not a new class. It is the same one design as has been selected as equipment for the 2016 olympics. Everything else is semantics. It will be far easier for ISAF to find a way of recognising the Torch than it will be to change class now. i believe that the only other option would be to lose 2 events/medals, and that would be a disaster for sailing to lose the 2 most popular classes.

 

There are a number of ways they can proceed and that all depends on how ILCA reacts. If they go along with the Torch, then all that is needed is a change of name which ISAF then approves of. If the ILCA doesn't play ball, I suspect that ISAF will find a way of recognising the Torch Class Association as the correct association to represent the "Kirby Boat". However, I still believe that it won't come to that. I knwo some on here don't agree, but i think that ISAF will talk some sense into the ILCA. You only have to look at the alternatives for them. i know i have said it before, but currently the ILCA presides over a class with no builders, they are a defendant along with Rastegar and there is the promise that if they don't make the right moves, they will probably be cut out of the loop all together. For me, the decisive moment came when ISAF told the ILCA to stop providing LPE with builders plaques. That was the first move in ISAF getting rid of the problem of also being named a defendant. I believe that ISAF will continue to do everything within their power to ensure they are not caught up in a losing court case. And don't forget that ISAF was advised by legal council to stop supplying plaques. I doubt ILCA has had the benefit of the level of advice ISAF has had available to them.

 

I am really looking forward to seeing what LPE will try, I am sure we will see something interesting.

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It seems pretty obvious to me that BK is going after Rastegar personally so that he cannot play the same games as he did at Maclaren.

That's a part of the filing that puzzles me, because under British law a limited company is a legal personality, distinct from its owners/directors. There are exceptions to that statement but none of them would apply here. Possibly Connecticut company law is different in that respect, although I'd be surprised as that would seem a huge disincentive from incorporating companies there. I will continue to be interested as this plays out.

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^

 

There's no criminal conduct alleged. Breach of contract, breach of trademark. Civil law matters.

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The people in the moth class are unlikely to favour olympic moths. They are development people running their own class, and are unlikely to change class rules to accommodate IOC requirements. There is no Mach2 class organisation or class status with ISAF so its a long way from being selected. Even if a moth is ultimately chosen the 4 year selection lead time for each olympics would make the boats obsolete moths by the time racing started. If they had been selected for London they would have been Bladeriders not Mach2s. There was only one Bladerider racing in the 114 boat fleet at the last WC one week after London. Moth development moves on and will continue to do so. Its all happenned before, the near defunct Europe was a breakaway moth class.

The Laser sailors class will survive in some form, the sport needs it to. It also deserves to remain in the olympics as its the most representative of the most popular form of dinghy sailing, the biggest class and the widest spread. More so than any of the other classes. The people who enjoy racing them need to take control, and Kirby's Torch option seems like a reasonable way to go. The members and not the exec need to decide if ILCA will go along for the ride or fight it, its their class and they should decide. They have the opportunity to have builders servicing the class and its members not controlling them or fighting over it.

Agree totally Phil - that's why I said make it a Mach 2 class and leave the moth alone as a dev class. Europe 2016 as such.

 

While it is only three years away and the slope to get the MNAs is steep, I can only point to the Nacra 17 - how many are racing in Australia at the moment? At least the Mach 2 is tooled up, proven, and well distributed globally. The spectacle of a foiling Mens and Womens Mach 2 class in the Olympics would be remarkable for sailing coverage everywhere.

Lets face it, the points systems and courses the Olympics do now make the racing a bit of a distance from normal sailing anyway!

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Rohanoz, on 15 Apr 2013 - 07:59, said:

Phil S, on 11 Apr 2013 - 11:59, said:

The people in the moth class are unlikely to favour olympic moths. They are development people running their own class, and are unlikely to change class rules to accommodate IOC requirements. There is no Mach2 class organisation or class status with ISAF so its a long way from being selected. Even if a moth is ultimately chosen the 4 year selection lead time for each Olympics would make the boats obsolete moths by the time racing started. If they had been selected for London they would have been Bladeriders not Mach2s. There was only one Bladerider racing in the 114 boat fleet at the last WC one week after London. Moth development moves on and will continue to do so. Its all happenned before, the near defunct Europe was a breakaway moth class.
The Laser sailors class will survive in some form, the sport needs it to. It also deserves to remain in the Olympics as its the most representative of the most popular form of dinghy sailing, the biggest class and the widest spread. More so than any of the other classes. The people who enjoy racing them need to take control, and Kirby's Torch option seems like a reasonable way to go. The members and not the exec need to decide if ILCA will go along for the ride or fight it, its their class and they should decide. They have the opportunity to have builders servicing the class and its members not controlling them or fighting over it.


Agree totally Phil - that's why I said make it a Mach 2 class and leave the moth alone as a dev class. Europe 2016 as such.

While it is only three years away and the slope to get the MNAs is steep, I can only point to the Nacra 17 - how many are racing in Australia at the moment? At least the Mach 2 is tooled up, proven, and well distributed globally. The spectacle of a foiling Mens and Womens Mach 2 class in the Olympics would be remarkable for sailing coverage everywhere.
Lets face it, the points systems and courses the Olympics do now make the racing a bit of a distance from normal sailing anyway!

A foiler isn't going to be chosen for the Olympics and certainly not at short notice.. How do i know? Because I spent 2 years lobbying ISAF in an attempt to make it happen and despite lots of encouragement from members of the exec, there simply isn't the support from "grass roots" countries to get it through.

You need to understand a bit about how this all works. First off, the Laser and Laser Radial are the classes that are meant to allow maximum participation. Smaller countries are heavily invested in fleets and for them to change classes is very difficult. they simply don't have the funding. It's not uncommon for the Olympic funding to be tied to the number of people participating in the country - i cannot remember which country it was, but to retain government funding, they needed a home fleet of 20 boats. This sort of thing makes it easy to change the classes with small participation, like the skiffs and cat, but the popular classes like the Lasers and 470 are deeply embedded. For many countries, a vote to change those classes is a vote to drop out of Olympic sailing.

Because of this self interest situation, the ISAF council will do almost anything not to lose the Laser/Torch classes. To lose those 2 classes would probably mean the loss of at least 10 competing countries. With those countries spread across a number of votes in council, I see no way a motion to drop the Lasers and/or replace it with another class will ever get through. Therefore, what will happen is that council will vote for whatever it takes to keep the Laser/Torch in the Olympics. I believe that it's actually easier to get a vote that changes all the ISAF requirements for International classes than it would be to drop the Laser and bring in an all new class.

I should add that Phil is absolutely right that the Moth class doesn't want that olympic involvement. We weren't exactly popular with the class in pushing a one design "moth". I actually got the Bladerider to the point of applying for International Class recognition. I had written all the class rules, had people in about 10 countries ready to launch class associations and we certainly had the number of boats required. We even started to discuss the first Bladerider World Championships. I don't think that Amac was ever fully on board with the idea, but the "Money" was doing the talking. Of course, it wouldn't have been the first time that a Moth design had become a one design and been selected for the Olympics - the Europe started life as a moth.

In many ways, i am now pleased it didn't happen. For starters, we now know a lot more about the money man who invested in bladerider and who shafted the likes of Amac and Rohan, and to some extent myself. the only good thing that came out of it was that Amac got motivated to take them down the best way he knew how, by developing a better boat and now we have the Mach 2 which is so much better in every way, from sailability to build quality and reliability.

Finally, even if there was support on the ISAF council for a foiling Moth to become an Olympic class, it would still need somebody to come forward, set up a class with rules, constitution, organisation etc, and I cannot see any current builder interested in that.

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^

 

It is a shame, that in little old Australia, the Olympics classes (other than the Laser) are simply not raced at club level.

Any sort of 'wow - I'd like to do that' would be lost on those attracted to the sport when they don't recognise any of the boats at clubs.

 

470s, Finns, you get a dozen boats each to the Nationals.

Go to a land-locked country like the Czech Republic and you will have a dozen Finns racing on a tiny dam each week.

 

The Laser is an institution, and I'm sure it will make it through in whatever form it takes. In this day however - the modern Olympics is a media and individual athlete event - and the only benefit to sailing remaining a participant, is to make a spectacle of it. That means the sad equation of visual appear, big fleets, big speed or big crashes. The Laser gets 1 from 4.

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Lets face it, the points systems and courses the Olympics do now make the racing a bit of a distance from normal sailing anyway!

A foiler isn't going to be chosen for the Olympics and certainly not at short notice.. How do i know? Because I spent 2 years lobbying ISAF in an attempt to make it happen and despite lots of encouragement from members of the exec, there simply isn't the support from "grass roots" countries to get it through.

You need to understand a bit about how this all works. First off, the Laser and Laser Radial are the classes that are meant to allow maximum participation. Smaller countries are heavily invested in fleets and for them to change classes is very difficult. they simply don't have the funding. It's not uncommon for the Olympic funding to be tied to the number of people participating in the country - i cannot remember which country it was, but to retain government funding, they needed a home fleet of 20 boats. This sort of thing makes it easy to change the classes with small participation, like the skiffs and cat, but the popular classes like the Lasers and 470 are deeply embedded. For many countries, a vote to change those classes is a vote to drop out of Olympic sailing.

Because of this self interest situation, the ISAF council will do almost anything not to lose the Laser/Torch classes. To lose those 2 classes would probably mean the loss of at least 10 competing countries. With those countries spread across a number of votes in council, I see no way a motion to drop the Lasers and/or replace it with another class will ever get through. Therefore, what will happen is that council will vote for whatever it takes to keep the Laser/Torch in the Olympics. I believe that it's actually easier to get a vote that changes all the ISAF requirements for International classes than it would be to drop the Laser and bring in an all new class.

[...]

Finally, even if there was support on the ISAF council for a foiling Moth to become an Olympic class, it would still need somebody to come forward, set up a class with rules, constitution, organisation etc, and I cannot see any current builder interested in that.

I can't see the laser/torch being tossed for this olympic cycle is ISAF has anything to say about it (and in this matter they tend to have a lot of say). But I could imagine that if everything is still in serious disarray in 3 years then ISAF might take a second look at the class for 2024 and beyond (the laser technically having been confirmed for 2020)...

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There's one more twist in the whole "Torch" saga from the rules and regulations perspective..

 

What is "Torch" at this moment of time?

Is it ISAF recognized or international Class - NO.

Does active "Torch" Class/Owners association exist - most probably NOT.

Is "Torch" being actively raced - NO.

Is it being represented by at least 5 MNA's, each having at least 15 boats - NO.

And so on..

ISAF has very strenght criteria on how the Class can receive its designation, which is all laid out in:

ISAF Regulations PART III Classes and Rating Systems

10.ISAF CLASS ASSOCIATIONS

 

It is rather lenghty process and I don't see how "Torch" (as a "new" Class) can become the chosen Class for Rio, if all criteria, outlined in the above mentioned document, has to be fullfilled. Do you think the ISAF will ignore its own regulations?

 

Just my 2 cents.

So if 5 existing national Laser associations affilliated with the new Torch association that would overcome most of the obstacles? ITCA could apply for ISAF Int class status?

They could even cover their bets by remaining affilliated with ILCA.

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Is it not more the case that the designers of those classes divorced Laser? That, at least, is the general account of events/rumour as far as the SB3/SB20 is concerned.

 

 

I don't know about Phill Morrison and the Laser 3000 which become the VanderCraft built 3000, but interesting side note that the 3000's still use the Bethwaite Laser 2 hull design (but not the deck and rig) and Bethwaite's now use LPA (who made the original Laser 2) as the distributor for their boats in Oz.. Of course try and find anyone at LPA who knows anything about Laser 2 sail plans these days is impossible, but perhaps it is indicative of the mutual trust/respect in the way they do business. And why BK doesn't need to sue them.

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Counterfeiting is alleged.

Alleged trademark violation, a civil law matter. Rashegar hasn't been counterfeiting currency.

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