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MR.CLEAN

US Sailing Olympic Submission for 2024

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What do you think?

 

 

Mixed Kite Triathlon- equipment criteria: a twin tip board with a foiling option: i.e., convertible, with the capability of a wide range of sailor sizes able to compete. Series production of equipment to control cost of purchase and equipment compliance. 

Mixed Team Racing- equipment criteria: Provided 2 person (main, jib) dinghies suitable for team racing, crew weight minimums equalized by requirement to carry weight (water) if under the minimum, no trapeze, no spinnaker. 

Mixed Offshore Keelboat- equipment criteria: capable of Offshore sailing for 2 people to race for 48 hours. Category 2, Offshore Special Regulations. 

 

 

M23182024OlympicSailingCompetitionEventsEquipment-[23734].pdf

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Anything to make it more exciting than it is right now.  Plus, more TV accessible.

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I like team racing, but slow 2 person with no spin is not going to cut it in the Olympics.  Need excitement, and drama, and a 420 is not going to work. Need speed and thrills for tv coverage and advertising opportunities.  Olympics is about showcasing our sport.

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The self serving in terms of team racing doesn't look like it will get far.

What are they axing? 3x single handers and 2x double hander. And athlete numbers have to come down by, what, 30 (?). 4-6 on a team racing team.

The kite boarders submission is more fun.

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2 up 48 hour offshore in a light keelboat where rowing is legal in winds below 4 knots. Call it the marathon of sail. It would be one of the most olympic events ever seen.

DRC

edit:
Worth noting that there's an entire (rapidly growing) ocean rowing community that you could pull in for added political leverage to make this thing a reality. And you could get Chris Maas to design the boat.

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3 hours ago, Irish River said:

I like team racing, but slow 2 person with no spin is not going to cut it in the Olympics.  Need excitement, and drama, and a 420 is not going to work. Need speed and thrills for tv coverage and advertising opportunities.  Olympics is about showcasing our sport.

 

Stars have been an Olympic class with no spins, since they beat out he Etchells, many decades ago, in a competetive bid between them.  No doubt there was a fix in there, somewhere by someone, or some powerful group....

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45 minutes ago, billy backstay said:

 

Stars have been an Olympic class with no spins, since they beat out he Etchells, many decades ago, in a competetive bid between them.  No doubt there was a fix in there, somewhere by someone, or some powerful group....

Stars were in for decades. It was the Soling that beat out the Etchells for an Olympic berth.

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I like the approach from the US Olympic sailing director. That whatever platforms are chosen for 2024 we will optimize our team for those events. Not try and fight the system, but work with it and be successful.

With the way the current US support is for The Olympic classes and our results over the past few Olympic Games it might just be a welcome change to see something completely new. Maybe putting some slow ass collegiate boat in and do some team racing might give our sailors a chance at a medal!

Look at our current Olympic fleets going into the final half of the Olympic Quad and how many US teams do you really see making a run at a medal. Certainly not the 470 women’s! In each class we have less than a couple teams even making an attempt. And it appears they are just hoping to make it to the games! In the men’s 470 no one is even giving Stu and Dave a run so they are pretty much going back for Stu’s fourth Olympics and so far no medal. Not sure they are really medal hopefuls for 2020 unless they can step up their results. But at least they are close to the front and can see who the medal contenders are shaping up to be.

Interesting statistic from Rio was that 100% of gold medal winners were the current world champions. Except for Caleb Paine, all the minor medal winners were past worlds champions. How many world champions in the Olympic classes in the last or current quad are Americans- Zero from my count unless I am corrected by the smarter group on this forum.

Maybe a big switch up in the Olympic platforms is just what is needed to revitalize medal efforts here in the US. No matter how crazy, stupid the event might be to make it appeal to viewers. 

While I know there is a solid amount of effort going into supporting the teams for 2020 from US Sailing. I really get the feeling the new management are just trying to get processes and logisitcs in place to see what the changes will be for 2024 and  develop a truly competitive team for this event with an even bigger goal of 2028 in LA. My personal opinion and part of the reason to keep the numbers low on the US Sailing Team this quad. I really do not think there is much hope for many medals inTokyo. But  looking forward to be wrong on this.

 

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A couple rowing on a windless night, out of view of the competition.  Now THAT's exciting!

 

Edit: Can they have sex?

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3 hours ago, eastern motors said:

They don't think two Olympic athletes can handle a spin and traps?  Probably just wanted a JAM class to appeal to people that know nothings about sailing.

49er? I14?

doing it for 30 years.

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Keep the Finn. The epitome of hard racing.

Forget the kites. They are a passing fad, like boardsailing. Remember when sailboards were everywhere? Haven't seen one being used for several years.

Forget the offshore keelboat. Absolutely NO spectator/TV value in that.

 

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Bait earlier wrote, “interesting statistic from Rio was that 100% of gold medal winners were the current world champions”

Rather than spread fake news, how about getting your facts right.

 In Rio 2016, the only Gold Medal winners that were current 2016 world champions were in Finn, 470M and 49’er.  

The Truth is that 30% of 2016 Gold Medal winners were the current world champions - not 100%.

2016 World Champs

Laser-GBR / Radial-GBR / 470M-CRO / 470W-FRA / 49’er-NZL / FX-ESP / RSXM-POL / RSXW-POL / Nacra-FRA / Finn-GBR

Dont waste our time with fake news please. 

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See I knew this group was much smarter than I am. Thanks for posting the real facts. Sorry for the fake news. 

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The mixed offshore keel event should be fully crewed and be at least a week long race.  Something like 50 foot cats, racing far offshore... 

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I like the idea of a teams race.  A point to note in the proposal is this:

Quote

Existing athletes that qualify for other events; allow all nations with 6 sailors competing to enter this event.

Kind of like the cycling.  the teams pursuit etc... I think is made up of riders from other events so no real hit on numbers.  The alternative is maybe a match racing event, again using the same sailors

Two person, offshore keelboat would be neat, but no way is someone going to race for gold for 48hrs double handed then compete again in another event less than a week down the track.  I think logistics and boat cost will kill that one, unless of course the same boats are used for the double hander as the match racing.  

I wonder how a switch from the laser to say, the wasp would go down.  

 

 

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The US Sailing proposal is just sort of lame.  

There should be medals given for backroom politics, because there's a massive brawl going on over all this around the world.

The winner is going to be Markus Schwendtner, who runs the kite mafia, and basically has control of enough votes to get whatever he wants. 

Though he had a party foul recently when he tried to file a Regulation 35 complaint against the Israeli Zvi Ziblat.  The complaint was rejected by World Sailing.  Seems Markus doesn't care much at all about what used to be the basis for decision making in the sport, especially now that Napier has gotten the procedural rules changed so that the WS Staff can get pretty much whatever they want whenever they want, and he didn't much like Zvi trying to get some common sense put in the equation.  Markus may have fucked with the wrong guy when he fucked with Zvi, who drove tanks in the Israeli army.  Andy Hunt is the face of the organization now, Kim Anderson is just window dressing, but Napier really runs the show.

Whatever everyone needs to understand is that the new Olympic format has just about zero to do with what is good for sailing, it's only about making money for the IOC, then World Sailing, and then whoever can get their equipment made as the mandated equipment for a class.  The Olympics is just a sports reality tv show, and the silly World Sailing World Cup of the World Championship Worlds is the thing World Sailing thinks they will make money on, though they just bleed red ink like a stuck pig on the bitch.

There's a few very experienced Olympians who aren't pleased about all these class changes, but no one at World Sailing gives even a tiny fuck what any sailor thinks.  Santiago Lange had a very good analysis of the changes and costs associated with all the changes in the cat classes, and if the won't listen to him they aren't about to listen to a bunch of stuffed shirt blue blazer types at US Failing.

I can't be bothered to go line by line in the US Sailing submission, but one of the highlights for me was their comparison of snowboarding to sailing, saying that snowboard helped skiing. No it didn't.  It helped ski areas sell more lift tickets to some degree, but the concept of what you see in the Olympics for snowboarding and what happens at a normal ski area are not remotely close to reality.  How many ski areas have giant half pipes?  How many ski areas allow people to just play boardercross?  Same with all the aerial stuff in skiing.  It is a tiny tiny subset of skiing.  

There is nothing about kite foiling that is similar to snowboarding and facilities. Kiters have zero reason to hang out at any yacht club.  Does anyone think that someone sitting on a couch somewhere watching kite foiling is just going to jump and say "hey, that shit is cool, I better start by going down to my community sailing center, sign up for lessons with some dork with a clip board and whistle telling me what I can and can't do so I eventually get a really cool US Sailing certified daysailer license, and then one day maybe I can go to the kite surfing store and show them I am an actual certified sailor and I can just jump on a board and fly and do cool tricks". 

A core problem is that no one has clearly defined a goal, a goal that is achievable and beneficial.  This lofty notion of "sailing on TV will help grow the sport" simply has not and will not work.  If Larry Ellison spending literally 10's of millions of dollars can't draw an audience with big, audacious boats, what makes anyone think that Olympic sailing, while it competes with sports that already have a big tv following in every summer Olympics is going to move the needle one iota for participation across the board.  It won't. 

Kite foiling in the Olympics and on tv will help the kite foiling industry. Period.

Nothing wrong with that, but please, let's stop with these lofty, unachievable goals.

Here's what I'd actually propose, presuming we only have 10 medals in sailing:

Kite foiling acrobatic men
Kite foiling acrobatic women

Kite foiling racing men
Kite foiling racing women

Board foiling acrobatic men
Board foiling acrobatic women

Board foiling racing men
Board foiling racing women 

Moth foiling racing open
Nacra foiling racing mixed, but both sailors must alternate as drivers.

Only the Moth and Nacra are real boats that cost real money.  Everything else is easy and cheap to move around, with low event production costs. If the goal is to sell speed on TV, then why not have everything be foiling?  The feature events of course will be the acrobatic stuff.

Race courses would be much shorter than we have today, say something like 8-12 minute races, which should work for commercial breaks.  After all, this is ALL about TV. 

All starts downwind.

Weather boat has right of way, this is so everyone always sails fast, no more luffing.  We want to see speed don't we?

Medal race is one race, winner take all. Only top four from qualifying get to sail in the medal race. 4th place will truly suck, and the agony of losing will make for great TV.

A fundamental problem in the sport is that all of the sport is regulated from the Olympics top down.  It is utterly absurd that all of racing around the world has to conform to the massive rules and regulations that get promulgated because of the Olympics.  What really should happen is that World Sailing can go run Olympic sailing, the MNA's pick their Olympic teams, and then let the rest of the sport do whatever they want without oversight and regulation from World Sailing.

In the mean time, anyone who thinks they are sailing in the Olympics for love of country, I have some nice beachfront to sell you in Omaha.

It's all about the money, stupid. 
 

 

 

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Posted elsewhere 

What does Triathalon even mean? do you windsurf, ride a bike 100 miles and then run to the finish? It feels like the leadership of our sport are grasping for straws. Get in touch folks. You just guaranteed no 'gravitationally challenged' participants with the elimination of the finn, you still have a laser instead of a moth (which I support if your goal is NOT tv ratings), you kept the most ridiculous event when viewed on TV the 'flappy birds' rsx... 

Credit for trying to add in new segments of our sport with team racing (please Lord, get a commentator that can add value to the event and w
ebcast some broadcasts so that sailors can bring their friends and give feedback as to which broadcast team did the best job for their non sailing friends) and offshore, which should be a multi camera live stream with lead up races so that every country can follow their team live - hopefully some country beyond the french will actually tune in.

Curling has made great progress - can we not do better than that? Who are the people, what is the game (must be well explained to the audience) and if you can't guarantee wind at the event - dont try to publish a tv schedule - just have an AWESOME summary show that fits in a time slot. Live coverage can happen via webcast.

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WTF are you doing or even reporting on the efforts to bring sailing back to the Paralympics???
As one goes so may be the other.

Sail Boat Racing is such a wealthy (white) sport.

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4 hours ago, PeterHuston said:

All starts downwind.

Weather boat has right of way, this is so everyone always sails fast, no more luffing.  We want to see speed don't we?

Medal race is one race, winner take all. Only top four from qualifying get to sail in the medal race. 4th place will truly suck, and the agony of losing will make for great TV.

If this trickles down to non-Olympic sailing, I think I'll give golf a try. 

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Team Racing is the perfect form of sailing for the Olympics its has:

-Repeated interactions so when people learn the basic rules they are invested in it and tune back in for the next day;

- Tournament format so if your country is having a deep run it draws coverage and viewers in;

-Short races 5-10 mins for short attention spans and inclusion in highlight shows;

-   and most importantly questionable umpire decisions so there is something to discuss at work the next day "no way did they have room at mark three what was the umpire thinking?!" 

plus it can be held close to shore for live viewing and its great racing. 

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I think US Sailing has produced a thought provoking proposal which tries to examine the issues of events at the Olympics in a rational way . Previously the process has been wrapped up in class based politics. I witnessed some of the politics from a sideline 8 years ago and was struck by the unhealthy influence of former Olympians and class stalwarts who maneuvered to protect their own class/equipment.

The decision to drop multihulls was dumb and illogical.

The decision to reverse on Kite boards and drop them after they had been selected was catastrophically stupid. (I am a recreational windsurfer and have never kite boarded but even I could see how inane the arguments were to drop kiteboarding)

 The lack of a keelboat at the pinnacle of our sport ....one of the largest categories of our sport everywhere else.

It always seemed to me the WS/ISAF should stand back from the fray and define the key categories/disciplines of the sport of sailing and say "These categories MUST be represented....and the only debate is  what is the best equipment to represent these categories? and what are the best types of event to portray this equipment?

It seems to me that the Categories/Disciplines  are :

Singlehanded Dinghies

Double Person Dinghies

Multihull

Board

Keelboat

This represents 99% of competitive sailing (iceboats would have to enter the winter olympics....and wow that would be fantastic to watch.  Blokarts?)

Each category should have either one mixed event and/or two separate Mens/Womens events

Then within the category, equipment should be selected on the basis of Relevance, Test of the athletes (after all the medals should go to the best sailor athletes in the world), Excitement (for us the fans).  The event should be a true test of the sailor and equipment and fun to watch.

So how does the USS proposal stack up?

 

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Sailing in the Olympics? Who the fuck cares... about as relevant to me as the price of bulk goat dung in Upper Zamibia.

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Singlehanded Dinghy: 

Men:  Laser. Yup. Highly relevant, Highly accessible. Bit on the dull side to watch but if you have to pick one singlehanded dinghy, the Laser is still probably the right choice.  The Moth would be second most relevant option (looking at the list of sailor athletes participating in the Moth Worlds)  . It really has to be either the Moth or the Laser and the Laser is currently still the right boat due to accessibility to wide range of nations (Laser Worlds entrants). It should be reviewed as Moth continues to spread.

Women : Laser Radial. Yup. No Contest.

:)

Doublehanded Dinghy/Skiff

Whether or not the 49er is still the best doublehanded dinghy/skiff out there is open for debate.

However it is right to have a Men and Womens doublehanded skiff/dinghy so I give USS a thumbs up for that.

:)

MultiHull

USS propose a mixed gender multihull.  I have previously wondered if there should be two multihull events, one for men and one for women. Some of our best Multihull sailors are left on the beach by the mixed configuration. But it seems to have worked so overall :)

Keelboat

The exit of the Star Class from the Olympics was like the conclusion of a Roman epic mini series. "I Claudius"  or "Game of Thrones " .  The Class which had excelled at back room politics and plots was finally stabbed in the back itself.  "Et Tu Brutus" and the aged  holder of the iron throne was finally deposed. But as the young republic celebrated, they failed to realize that they had omitted to replace the Star with a modern keelboat. So one of the largest category of sail boat racing around the globe with startlingly brilliant athletes was no longer included in the Olympics.

Kudos to USS for proposing to bring back a modern version. Yes it should be mixed so a solid thumbs up for the proposal.

:)

Boards

^_^

USS have got this half right and half wrong.  Yes they have included board disciplines but they propose 3 events and it doesnt make sense.  Its time to fish or cut bait. Kite boarding needs to have both a mens and womens category.  Kite boarding can involve fleet racing, slalom and acrobatics (along the lines of surfing and snowboarding) but it needs to be two genders.

So I would cut windsurfing. Sorry guys, but its time. I am a windsurfer and enjoy it but the best board athletes around are now being hauled by a kite.

Teams

Brilliant idea if it can be executed. Kind of like the relay does for running. Involving a team sport in sailing would be fun to watch, easy to understand and allow multi medals. Not sure that they have the right equipment in mind but I would give it a thumbs up :)

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18 minutes ago, JoeO said:

Sailing in the Olympics? Who the fuck cares... about as relevant to me as the price of bulk goat dung in Upper Zamibia.

About 25 rupees a kilo last time I checked https://www.indiamart.com/proddetail/goat-manure-lendi-khat-11292487012.html

If you are not interested in Olympic sailing then presumably we should not be interested in your opinion about Olympic sailing ?

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This is an ill thought out, self serving set of ideas that cannot be adopted.

Let's start with the team racing, which is clearly getting the US contingent on here excited, no doubt because it is an event they might stand a chance of doing well in. It cannot be adopted as an event in the Olympics because it isn't done in enough countries. We have seen this problem before, but the IOC stipulates that an event needs to active in a certain number of countries before it can be adopted. How many countries have team racing national championships, or the equivalent? I suspect there are only 2, the USA and UK.

Then there is the issue of who is in the team. The idea that it should be made up of the competitors from other events is wrong. There has never been a link between being a world class sailor of Olympic classes and being able to team race. That means we won't see the best team racers at the Olympics, because according to the submission, the way you get into the team is through selection in a conventional, fleet sailing event. To be a good team racer, you need to practice, as a team. What Olympic sailor is going to want to take time out of their campaign in order to train for an event that isn't their real focus?

I also have to doubt the appeal of TV coverage, how it would be done and how it would be made so non sailors can understand it.

The offshore event is also badly considered. The optic of 2 people needing a very expensive piece of equipment is exactly what the sport doesn't need, only reinforcing the image of it being a rich, privileged sport. Emerging countries are going to vote this down pretty quickly as they struggle to be able to afford the more expensive classes we have now, never mind an offshore keelboat. It also adds significant cost to the venue as it needs hoists, berthing and all the other facilities that are needed for keelboats (one of the reasons they were dropped in the first place). As an event it is not likely to make for very good TV. What makes the Volvo so good is that it is edited highlights. For much of the race, if you go live, it would be really boring. An edited highlights program could be great, but the IOC doesn't like that sort of event at all.

Then there is the issue of appealing to a wide range of sailors and in particular, to sailors of differing weights. This proposal severely limits the opportunities for people of above average size, or even of average size in western countries. They say that the bigger men and women can sail in the offshore class, but so can smaller people, so it is clearly discriminating on the basis of size. in other sports where weight makes a difference, there are usually events aimed at different weight groups (lightweight rowers). Why not in sailing? What's wrong with having events aimed at smaller or larger sailors, so long as they can be seen to be athletic.

This proposal has nothing to do with what is good for the sailors. It is only about what is good for US Sailing and how they can address their shortcomings without tackling teh real issues with the USA.

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5 minutes ago, Team_GBR said:

This is an ill thought out, self serving set of ideas that cannot be adopted.

Let's start with the team racing, which is clearly getting the US contingent on here excited, no doubt because it is an event they might stand a chance of doing well in. It cannot be adopted as an event in the Olympics because it isn't done in enough countries. We have seen this problem before, but the IOC stipulates that an event needs to active in a certain number of countries before it can be adopted. How many countries have team racing national championships, or the equivalent? I suspect there are only 2, the USA and UK.

Then there is the issue of who is in the team. The idea that it should be made up of the competitors from other events is wrong. There has never been a link between being a world class sailor of Olympic classes and being able to team race. That means we won't see the best team racers at the Olympics, because according to the submission, the way you get into the team is through selection in a conventional, fleet sailing event. To be a good team racer, you need to practice, as a team. What Olympic sailor is going to want to take time out of their campaign in order to train for an event that isn't their real focus?

I also have to doubt the appeal of TV coverage, how it would be done and how it would be made so non sailors can understand it.

The offshore event is also badly considered. The optic of 2 people needing a very expensive piece of equipment is exactly what the sport doesn't need, only reinforcing the image of it being a rich, privileged sport. Emerging countries are going to vote this down pretty quickly as they struggle to be able to afford the more expensive classes we have now, never mind an offshore keelboat. It also adds significant cost to the venue as it needs hoists, berthing and all the other facilities that are needed for keelboats (one of the reasons they were dropped in the first place). As an event it is not likely to make for very good TV. What makes the Volvo so good is that it is edited highlights. For much of the race, if you go live, it would be really boring. An edited highlights program could be great, but the IOC doesn't like that sort of event at all.

Then there is the issue of appealing to a wide range of sailors and in particular, to sailors of differing weights. This proposal severely limits the opportunities for people of above average size, or even of average size in western countries. They say that the bigger men and women can sail in the offshore class, but so can smaller people, so it is clearly discriminating on the basis of size. in other sports where weight makes a difference, there are usually events aimed at different weight groups (lightweight rowers). Why not in sailing? What's wrong with having events aimed at smaller or larger sailors, so long as they can be seen to be athletic.

This proposal has nothing to do with what is good for the sailors. It is only about what is good for US Sailing and how they can address their shortcomings without tackling teh real issues with the USA.

You were doing fine there until the very last word. 

Its not a USA problem, it’s a leadership problem at the world and MNA level. 

Bad ideas poorly presented on all fronts.

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15 hours ago, Mambo Kings said:

About 25 rupees a kilo last time I checked https://www.indiamart.com/proddetail/goat-manure-lendi-khat-11292487012.html

If you are not interested in Olympic sailing then presumably we should not be interested in your opinion about Olympic sailing ?

...that's incredible!1  ...Just $0.38 per KILO for the good stuff!!!!   :o

 
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4 hours ago, Team_GBR said:

This is an ill thought out, self serving set of ideas that cannot be adopted.

Let's start with the team racing, which is clearly getting the US contingent on here excited, no doubt because it is an event they might stand a chance of doing well in. It cannot be adopted as an event in the Olympics because it isn't done in enough countries. We have seen this problem before, but the IOC stipulates that an event needs to active in a certain number of countries before it can be adopted. How many countries have team racing national championships, or the equivalent? I suspect there are only 2, the USA and UK.

Then there is the issue of who is in the team. The idea that it should be made up of the competitors from other events is wrong. There has never been a link between being a world class sailor of Olympic classes and being able to team race. That means we won't see the best team racers at the Olympics, because according to the submission, the way you get into the team is through selection in a conventional, fleet sailing event. To be a good team racer, you need to practice, as a team. What Olympic sailor is going to want to take time out of their campaign in order to train for an event that isn't their real focus?

I also have to doubt the appeal of TV coverage, how it would be done and how it would be made so non sailors can understand it.

The offshore event is also badly considered. The optic of 2 people needing a very expensive piece of equipment is exactly what the sport doesn't need, only reinforcing the image of it being a rich, privileged sport. Emerging countries are going to vote this down pretty quickly as they struggle to be able to afford the more expensive classes we have now, never mind an offshore keelboat. It also adds significant cost to the venue as it needs hoists, berthing and all the other facilities that are needed for keelboats (one of the reasons they were dropped in the first place). As an event it is not likely to make for very good TV. What makes the Volvo so good is that it is edited highlights. For much of the race, if you go live, it would be really boring. An edited highlights program could be great, but the IOC doesn't like that sort of event at all.

Then there is the issue of appealing to a wide range of sailors and in particular, to sailors of differing weights. This proposal severely limits the opportunities for people of above average size, or even of average size in western countries. They say that the bigger men and women can sail in the offshore class, but so can smaller people, so it is clearly discriminating on the basis of size. in other sports where weight makes a difference, there are usually events aimed at different weight groups (lightweight rowers). Why not in sailing? What's wrong with having events aimed at smaller or larger sailors, so long as they can be seen to be athletic.

This proposal has nothing to do with what is good for the sailors. It is only about what is good for US Sailing and how they can address their shortcomings without tackling teh real issues with the USA.

There is a bit of team racing in Aus. but mostly at school level.  Good competition but I suspect that the kids drop it when they leave school.

The offshore event? Totally out of sight and virtually no TV audience. I agree with you. Not gunna happen.

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Here we go again. A really old clueless guy telling us what we should be racing. 

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I like how everything he chose had fuck all to do with what the vast majority of sailors in the world sail. If they want gymnastics they should get down with the 14 year old chicks. This misses the point that most Olympic venues would be no good for half the proposed events with lack of wind and waves. 

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so the team race team has to be made up of sailors in the other classes. I am going to assume the kites and KB sailors aren't going to be included in the TR selection so we have to pull 3 men and 3 women from the dinghy classes. So the idea of USS is to spend an entire quad training in your chosen class and all that entails, maintaining a boat in the US and Europe, doing the whole WS circuit and making it to the Olympics and then on the last two days get trotted out for some dog and pony show that the US thinks they have a high chance of winning because their sailors spent 8+ years doing this one specific type of sailing in high school and college.

I like team racing but I don't think any other country is going to jump at that idea of having some 2 day event thrown together at the last minute in an entirely different boat that requires a skill set that is largely different from the one they spent the past quad training. If the US wants more medals they should be lobbying for some freestyle kiting type event. We do well in "extreme/action" sports. Also what sort of boat are they going to suggest? it can't be run in FJs/420s as that would be laughed out the room. Zim 15s? completely new class?

AUS should lobby for mixed gender 18s, that requires teamwork, is an international class, can be run in light and heavy wind and makes for good TV.

 

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1 hour ago, Lake Shark said:

...

AUS should lobby for mixed gender 18s, that requires teamwork, is an international class, can be run in light and heavy wind and makes for good TV.

 

Maybe not so good on the accessibility and cost side, though? :-)

 I don't think this (US submission) is a very helpful contribution to the discussion- We ought to be looking at how to balance the "pinnacle of the sport" aspiration with opportunity for all to compete on a level playing field: if the equipment is so expensive that only a few nations can hope to be competitive then that's not in line with the whole "Olympic Ideal". On the other hand, if the events don't reflect the sport, then that also fails a relevant test.

 Several people have commented that proposals (including dropping the Finn) would limit the opportunity for Big Guys to compete but we're already in a situation where the vast majority of sportswomen worldwide are effectively excluded because they are too light to be competitive- not even the 470 helms are average sized by international standards.

 It's also worth bearing in mind that only one sailor per country per event gets to go.. the proposal for re-cycling existing sailing team members into a different event exacerbates that; increasing the cost of running the events without increasing the opportunities for athletes to take part. I'm not against team racing: given that it's popularity in University environments is based on factors that could make it much more accessible for other nations- cheap, robust boats, lots of emphasis on tactics and skill in preference to big investments of time and money setting up sophisticated gear... but this doesn't seem like the right way to do it (and the point about the narrow base of this aspect of the sport is very well made).

 Big changes also don't help increase the accessibility- it definitely takes time and usually takes money to establish a successful pipeline of sailors with the right skills to compete, so changing the events means that the equipment base, coaching and so on needs to adapt. If the skills needed are cutting edge then by definition they will be in short supply and expensive to procure... How many nations have the resources (boat tuning and coaching skills and technology to support enough sailors to develop their sailing) to field a Nacra-17 team with the experience to be competitive?

 Seems to me there should be a couple of singlehanders for each sex, suiting different builds but ideally not too specific. The 470 should continue, along with a skiff and catamaran and there should be a keelboat event again- exactly what type of keelboat and event, I don't know but it's a huge section of the sport to ignore (especially given the history of the sport at the Olympics). Mixed crew, one design boat, cheap rather than exotic but ideally a four-person crew: 2F+2M with scope for varying sailor weights...

That makes a minimum of eight events, if all the crewed boats are mixed, so if it's possible to continue to have a slate of ten then a couple of those could be separate Male & Female classes instead...

 I'm not convinced that windsurfing or kiting should be included in "sailing". Call them windsports and campaign for separate inclusion. Especially if the competition is going to be "freestyle" judged rather than racing... How much course racing does your typical windsurfer or kiter do, anyway? When I windsurfed (and I used to do a lot), racing wasn't a big part of it and it doesn't look to me as if kites are going in that direction...

Cheers,

              W.

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21 minutes ago, WGWarburton said:

Maybe not so good on the accessibility and cost side, though? :-)

 I don't think this (US submission) is a very helpful contribution to the discussion- We ought to be looking at how to balance the "pinnacle of the sport" aspiration with opportunity for all to compete on a level playing field: if the equipment is so expensive that only a few nations can hope to be competitive then that's not in line with the whole "

 I don't think this (US submission) is a very helpful contribution to the discussion-

Umm. The submission is what this whole thread (discussion) is about.

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3 hours ago, Port Phillip Sailor said:

 I don't think this (US submission) is a very helpful contribution to the discussion-

Umm. The submission is what this whole thread (discussion) is about.

You misunderstand. There is a wider discussion about the event selection for the Olympics, to which US Sailing has submitted its contribution. I don't think that the US sailing submission is a helpful contribution to that discussion.

I haven't seen them contribute to this thread but their input would be interesting. I would be fascinated to see a spokesman defend their submission on this forum, as I suspect it might make for an entertaining debate, though it would probably descend pretty quickly to pointless name-calling.

 My apologies for confusing you.

Cheers,

              W.

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Team Racing

 I agree that Team Racing is an unlikely candidate in the short term (because not enough countries can put together teams). But surely its good that it enters the discussion. It is a growing part of the sport in countries where it exists.   Almost all youth sailors have participated in team racing and with the ever widening dominance of the dreaded Optimist as the international pram of choice for entry level competitive sailing, most international youth sailors will have done some team racing in their career development. Its bloody good fun to watch.   This may be a  case of "If you build it , they will come".   I dont think the Olympics is ready for it yet . I agree with the arguments that the proposed US Sailing format excludes some of the best team racing teams  ...so I certainly think it is worth discussing....and I applaud USS for throwing it into the mix.  I dont think we see team racing this go around.   

Keel Boat/ Offshore

Im not necessarily wedded to the offshore component .  My belief is that WS has to establish the categories first before talking about the specific equipment/class or the event (fleet racing/match racing/Beach acrobatics/offshore/onshore etc).  

One of the most important categories in our sport was dropped from Rio and Tokyo. Racing keel boats is one of the largest categories of sailboat racing in the world. It has huge amateur participation. Some of the very best sailor athletes in the world race keel boats, the true legends of our sport. Keel boats were in the first sailing Olympic event  and were in every Olympics until Rio.    The Star overstayed its welcome.   It was time for the Star to go. But  the Olympic equipment selection process is a political free for all, rather than an objective and systematic process.....it was class versus class fighting to keep a spot........so instead of looking for a better representative in the keelboat category  it got lost in the mushy process.

So before getting into the detail of offshore/onshore, WS has to decide if their should be a keelboat event in the Olympics.

So if there should be a keelboat category, then offshore gets quite interesting.  I dont think the offshore proposal comes from US Sailing originally. I think it comes from somewhere else and USS is supporting it (in exchange for what??) .   I was not an early fan of the offshore proposal. To me, the Olympics has always been about close tactical racing and short course boat speed.       But I grudgingly admit it has grown on me.  Spectating will actually be quite interesting with trackers and on board cameras .   Fans like endurance and the idea of two people being awake for 48 hours is kinda interesting.   Also, offshore racing is a big sport with some fairly interesting characters and legends, men and women, who could participate. 

The biggest hurdle would be equipment cost.  Although a one design might be cheaper than some nations 420 equipment (ahem pointing no fingers). But no seriously...equipment cost is the hurdle.

Is it worth discussing? You betcha.

Kites

No contest. If WS doesnt include kites this time around, after the unholy screw up last time, then the IOC will simply reduce the number of sailing events chosen by WS by 2-4 events and give it directly to an organization representing kite boarding. 

 

 

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On 4/16/2018 at 3:24 AM, PeterHuston said:

Medal race is one race, winner take all. Only top four from qualifying get to sail in the medal race. 4th place will truly suck, and the agony of losing will make for great TV.

The best race at the 2016 Olympics was the 49erFX medal race. Four boats had a chance to win, with winner taking all.

Andy Rice, writing for World Sailing, wrote ahead of the race: "Sailing leapt into the entertainment age at the Sydney Olympics in 2000 with the introduction of the 49er skiff.  Modelled on the 18 foot skiffs of Sydney Harbor, the 49er was an open skiff at that time and could be sailed by both men and women.  It ultimately became male dominated due to the overpowered nature of the sailing.

To keep relevant, the 49er has always progressed, continuously improving the boats with additions like carbon masts and square top mainsails along with ever tightening tolerances.  However, no leap forward can be as significant as the addition of the 49erFX as an Olympic Event for women.

On the eve of the first ever 49erFX medal race, what this progression has delivered is obvious.  The gender equal event now features the best men and women skiff sailors on the planet, and it is the women delivering the drama.  4 teams are all tied heading into the final race, where all the medals will be decided head to head.  It is sure to be a compelling 20 minutes of racing!"

I understand the history and tradition, the good days and bad days, shifty days, breakages, the heavy-air and light wind experts, etc etc as a reason to keep the series scores, but the best Olympic contests are where someone has to nail it on the day and/or someone beats the odds.

I watched one sailing race in 2016. I still find it extraordinary viewing today. The other sailing medal winners were undoubtedly worthy, but there was little in the way of sporting drama.

My point: the kit is pretty irrelevant. If sailing wants to keep its place it needs to deliver something the public understands. A medal race where the gold medallist needs to turn up, race and win...on the day whatever the weather.

 

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I'd be fine with kites, team race, and 49er/fx only. :ph34r: Team racing sounds fun, up close, personal, and makes sailing a "competitive" sport for the viewer. And let's be honest here, the Olympics are contortions of our sport anyway. Why not go all the way? 

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3v3 team racing would be darn near impossible for the uninitiated viewer to understand. 2v2, on the other hand, is easy - last place loses. The tactics, strategy, and logistics are also simplified, making it easier to install in countries without strong team racing cultures. I'd liken it to Beach Volleyball, Rugby Sixes, or Mixed Doubles Curling. These are variations of sports essentially invented for an international TV audience.

I think 2v2 team racing has a lot of potential. Not that I wouldn't watch 3v3 as well, though.

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9 hours ago, schooner27 said:

A medal race where the gold medallist needs to turn up, race and win...on the day whatever the weather.

Yea, thats what we need: Medal races! Let luck decide who wins! Like soooo exciting to watch!

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14 hours ago, 10thTonner said:

Yea, thats what we need: Medal races! Let luck decide who wins! Like soooo exciting to watch!

It is a trade off. The trend and tested series, where the best individual/crew should win. Good for the sport and aficionados, but totally boring and often unfathomable for the wider public, especially when the the gold medallist has won before the medal race and sits it out and even when the gold medallist finishes mid-fleet or worse in the medal race. Continue down this path and the likelihood is the sport's Olympic status & relevance reducing every cycle. A true medal race, with the best crews all in with a shout to win may introduce luck, but at least it is understandable.

Apparently the sailors competing in the Star Sailors League, many of whom have won & lost at the Olympics, so have some experience of the highs, lows and frustrations, actually asked for a system whereby the SSL events would be determined by a winner takes all final race because it introduces the components of risk, reward, chance and excitement. And, it would be comprehensible to the average man.

The very complaint we sailors make that a single race might be unfair because of the conditions is the exact reason the IOC struggles with sailing. Every Games the water is the wrong colour, the wind is the wrong shape etc etc. You rarely if ever have this problem with other sports. That does not make it right that the old methods have to get changed, but sailing needs to face up to the facts and decide what it wants. To be in and have to adapt or stick to principles and risk being flicked.

Perhaps it is sad that sports have to prostitute themselves at the altar of the Olympics, but ask those sports that have been kicked out or have never been in whether they would conform to the demands (perceived or actual) of the IOC to get a place at the table and I am sure they would say yes. Sailing may just have to do the same. At least it has the option.

So yes. Medal Races that determine the medals. 

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28 minutes ago, schooner27 said:

 especially when the the gold medallist has won before the medal race and sits it out

IIRC in the Olympics they cannot do that. Unlike a normal championship where if someone wraps up the regatta they can sit out the last day.

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What's wrong with having a series? Skiing World Cup, Tour de France, Formula One... hey even the Volvo are examples that do pretty well. And they all even out weather conditions and gear failure as much as possible.  

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1 hour ago, 10thTonner said:

What's wrong with having a series? Skiing World Cup, Tour de France, Formula One... hey even the Volvo are examples that do pretty well. And they all even out weather conditions and gear failure as much as possible.  

Nothing wrong with a series, but those events you list are not within the Olympic Games. In the Games: Downhill Skiing - one race (only combined & slalom do you get two races - but the courses are different); Cycling Road Race - one race (I can't think of any round robin/series contests). No right to complain about the snow, the road, the weather, punctures, wax, falling over etc. If you don't get it right on the day, in the conditions presented, you don't win. Absolute misery for those that should have won but didn't, but they are the rules. The fan bases for those sports are also huge among people that practice the disciplines and those that don't. (Incidentally, Golf is a good comparison, but I'd argue the contest is easier to understand and you cannot win before the last round.)

Keep the series format for the World Championships and other events that are for the purists, without the need for TV audiences. In the Olympics, use the series to determine the top ten and then let them slug it out.

And thanks Dogwatch, I hadn't read the rule that you need to make a reasonable effort to race the medal race. But I still maintain that if one turns up, finishes last in the MR  and still wins the gold any public imagination is completely lost. And, yes, in my view the Olympics are (now) as much about entertainment as they are about sport.

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11 hours ago, schooner27 said:

Nothing wrong with a series, but those events you list are not within the Olympic Games. In the Games: Downhill Skiing - one race (only combined & slalom do you get two races - but the courses are different); Cycling Road Race - one race (I can't think of any round robin/series contests). No right to complain about the snow, the road, the weather, punctures, wax, falling over etc. If you don't get it right on the day, in the conditions presented, you don't win. Absolute misery for those that should have won but didn't, but they are the rules. The fan bases for those sports are also huge among people that practice the disciplines and those that don't. (Incidentally, Golf is a good comparison, but I'd argue the contest is easier to understand and you cannot win before the last round.)

Keep the series format for the World Championships and other events that are for the purists, without the need for TV audiences. In the Olympics, use the series to determine the top ten and then let them slug it out.

And thanks Dogwatch, I hadn't read the rule that you need to make a reasonable effort to race the medal race. But I still maintain that if one turns up, finishes last in the MR  and still wins the gold any public imagination is completely lost. And, yes, in my view the Olympics are (now) as much about entertainment as they are about sport.

You were doing fine until the very end. The only thing the Olympics are about is money.

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I don't mind if sailing gets dumbed down for the typical bonehead Olympic audience. The problem is the trickling down of these idiot rules to real sailing. That "star sailors league" is the best (worst) example. They call is a league, but in fact it is a lottery (with added pumping). 

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https://www.sail-world.com/news/204225/Bringing-the-Southern-Ocean-to-the-Olympic-Regatta

Gladwell makes an important point about classes not in need of assistance on the course, currently two as Lasers have that reliability/durability SMOD issue...

Team racing should be in because the parties will lead to hookups which leads to dramatic gossip coverage, perfect for the new media we get to enjoy, thank you soo much. Never mind that they will all look the same to the uninitiated.

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