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The Official Tokyo 2020 Olympic Regatta Thread


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18 minutes ago, MikeR80 said:

Congrats to the Roble / Shea FX team that beat out some stiff competition to claim the berth there.

+1, Henken/Tunnicliffe-Tobias fought it out to the last leg of the last race and will make invaluable sparring partners leading up to Enoshima. Depending on how some Euro events go this year the US may be in medal contention in the 49erFX.

Luke Muller is ahead of Caleb Paine by 7 points in the Finn trials with the final selection made at the 2020 Finn Gold Cup in Palma this April. Caleb works well with his feet to the fire so I'd say that is still wide open. 

USA did not qualify for 2020 in the 49er and is waitlisted.

Gibbs/Weis had the smallest points total and are qualified in the N17.

Charlie Buckingham is named for ILCA Men.

McNay/Hughes have a 56 point delta on their closest competitor in the 470M and I really want them to do well, lots of 4th place finishes and good medal races so the potential is there, 2020 is their last chance before the 470 becomes mixed and the game changes again. 

Sisters Brugman finished immediately ahead of Sisters Cowles at the '19 470 Worlds, while Cowles' bested Brugman's in Miami and trail Brugman's by a single point and Barnes/Dallman-Weis by 3 points.

Definitely another shootout brewing in the Radial, Pan Am Silver Medalist Charlotte Rose leads the field, ahead of Paige Railey by 3 points and Erika Reineke by 12, both of whom are solid performers, 2020 Radial Worlds are two weeks away so that will be good fun.

Farrah Hall leads RS:X/W by 38 points so that seems like a done deal.

Pedro Pascual leads RS:X/M by 12 points.

 

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Who looks like they have a shot at a medal?     How much can you expect  6 months of training to make in climbing the world pecking order these days? What was the impact of the enormous leadership shakeup with Malcom Page leaving or being forced out ?   Who is running the show now and what changes have they made?   Any chance we make the medal round in all disciplines?  The PR propaganda about all of this upset from US Sailing is .... unbelievable!

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33 minutes ago, Tcatman said:

Who looks like they have a shot at a medal?

49erFX, Radial, maybe 470M

36 minutes ago, Tcatman said:

How much can you expect  6 months of training to make in climbing the world pecking order these days?

Not a lot but there's probably a few places to be gained or lost which could be the difference between making the medal race or not

37 minutes ago, Tcatman said:

What was the impact of the enormous leadership shakeup with Malcom Page leaving or being forced out ?   Who is running the show now and what changes have they made?  

From my limited outsider's perspective it seems like each fleet has circled their wagons and work through their class' coach rather than as an aggregate. Officially Jack Gierhart (USS CEO) is running the show but pretty quiet besides obvious propaganda, status quo is probably unchanged until after the Games 

42 minutes ago, Tcatman said:

Any chance we make the medal round in all disciplines?

Best we could possibly do would be 9/10 and even that's unlikely.

Finn: still a toss-up for who goes, Luke has had middling results playing with the big kids, 41st at 2019 Euros, 17th at 2019 Gold Cup, 3rd in Miami, 18/22 in the Test Event and 10th in the World Cup Enoshima. Caleb is obviously the defending Bronze medalist, 11th at 2019 Euros, 25th at 2019 Gold Cup, 1st in Miami, 11th in the WC. Hard "Maybe" for Medal Race. 

Charlie Buckingham was 19th at the 2020 Worlds and 11th at the 2019 Worlds in Enoshima, 12th at the 2019 Test Event and 18th at the WC-E. Soft "Maybe" for Medal Race

Radials are still in their trials. Erike Reineke was 8/40 at the Test Event, 20th at the WC-E, 21st at the 2019 Worlds, Paige Railey was 22/40 at the Test Event and 12th at the 2019 Worlds, and Charlotte Rose was 9th at the 2019 Worlds and 2nd at the Pan Am Games. Whomever goes will probably make the Medal Race, the performance is there to possibly get on the podium if the Danes/Dutch/Belgians slip up.

470M McNay/Hughes were 4/22 at the Test Event, 14th at the WC-E, 18th at the 2019 Worlds, and of course were 4th in 2016. I'd bet on them making the medal race, Belcher/Ryan are untouchable but they could get on the podium with them.

470W is rebuilding, sisters Brugman were 30th at the 2019 Worlds, 30th at the 2019 Euros and 10th at the WC-E, probably a long shot.

49erFX Shea/Roble were 13th in 2019 and obviously 3rd at the 2020 Worlds, 26th at the WC-E and 30th at the 2019 Euros, 2nd at Pan Am. Henken/Tobias would have been stronger contenders (9th 2019 Worlds, 7th 2020, 20th WC-E, 10th Euros plus Henken was 10th in 2016) for a medal but the trials were scored the way they were, if they can keep their momentum going in the European season and continue to train against Henken/Tobias I think they have a shot. 

Nacra...Gibbs/Weis were 16th at the WC-E, 14th at the 2019 Worlds and 17th at the 2020 Worlds, and 1st at Pan Am. Hard "Maybe" for medal race but not holding my breath for medals especially considering some of their competition.

RS:X:W...Farrah Hall 56th 2019 Worlds, 50th 2019 Euros, long shot.

RS:X:M, Pedro Pascual 49th 2019 Euros, 42nd 2019 Worlds, 28th in Rio, long shot.

 

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From my limited outsider's perspective it seems like each fleet has circled their wagons and work through their class' coach rather than as an aggregate. Officially Jack Gierhart (USS CEO) is running the show but pretty quiet besides obvious propaganda, status quo is probably unchanged until after the Games 

Oh!... goodie... another reboot on our 8 year cycle for no forward progress ......

The circle the wagons, everything is GREAT, is a common theme..... In this system, you simply can not rock the boat and complain because your financial support will melt away.  We don't need the gossip and drama unless there is some major screw-up that needs to be rooted out by making it public. ...   My hunch... nothing obviously wrong here.. SO.......what now?

OK... I agree with your handicapping.... Three medal round appearances and Maybe a medal is another lousy result!  If one reads the tea leaves...  Malcom told US Sailing...NOPE.... not going to get any better then this for this quad and PROBABLY no better for the next quad... I was too optimistic and I don't see it happening with these resources and this environment! .... US Sailing.. said... well that can not be...  we need a change in leadership... AGAIN!

So... here are my big questions...Yes... we have a pipeline... they are working hard... and... SO... the question is... do they have the raw talent OR is the talent pool simply mediocre.... and the results now and in the future are predictable.  

The flip side of that coin is... OK... is our coaching pool  simply mediocre and just cant get US sailors up  into medal contention or at least the medal round.. 

After 8 years... the results suggest ordinary talent leads to ordinary results. What does the future look like (realistically)?

Would you care to offer an opinion on the US talent pool 6 to 3?   Is there anyone that causes others to sit up and take notice... (a Lebron james if you will). How much hope should we allow our selves? My sense in multihulls is ... meh...  (in theory Bora should have been able to be in the mix in quad 2 but injury and events conspired... so they started over and Gibbs has done at least as well as Guliari did last quad.  beyond this... more like the spirit is willing ....

So, in the USA... the emperor's s clothes are always fabulous...  No one inside the USA system will publicly state their hard nosed opinion because jobs don't go to the naysayers..   The sailing press also needs access and so you won't get any hard nose reporting from them either.  It sucks to be a fan!

It seems to be crystal clear where we stand....What does the future look like? and Who might be able  / willing to offer some insight into our prospects?

 

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2 hours ago, Tcatman said:

do they have the raw talent OR is the talent pool simply mediocre

is our coaching pool  simply mediocre and just cant get US sailors up  into medal contention or at least the medal round.. 

What does the future look like (realistically)?

Would you care to offer an opinion on the US talent pool 6 to 3?   Is there anyone that causes others to sit up and take notice... (a Lebron james if you will). How much hope should we allow our selves?

I think there are sailors in the U.S. who have the ability to be very, very good.

2019 Youth Worlds we were 6th in the i420 Boys, 1st in i420 Girls, 1st in 29er Girls, 4th in Radial Boys; in 2018 we were 1st in i420 Boys, 1st in i420 Girls (with Sisters Cowles) 2nd in 29er Girls, 7th in N15, 1st in Radial Girls, 5th in Radial Boys, and 1st in RS:X boys. We can manage podium finishes and top tens against the kids who will most likely be going to the 2024, 2028, 2032 games.

I think college sailing is broken. It tries to be too much for too many people. Sure, you can get a degree and the potential for a robust "real" career, but you aren't going to be challenged technically with FJ's and you aren't going to be challenged tactically against most of MCSA/SAISA/MAISA/whatever, so going from ripping across the Baltic in a 29er to dozing off in Econ 101 and Keg Races against people who cannot sail leads to a degradation of skills, compared with kids with huge grants who are sailing 200 days a year, in their class, against seasoned competitors.

I can't really speak for the coaching pool; a lot of the people who should be mentoring these kids are still trying to do the Pro Sailor thing and they may have been painted into a corner professionally or the coaching money isn't good enough or they'd rather try to do ocean racing or what not. It doesn't help that the USST staff with a few exceptions seems to be a revolving door, so being able to gell with a coach and identify skill gaps over a long period of time while building rapport might not be happening.

I don't know exactly what Malcom's plan was or the timeline he laid out, obviously it made some people mad and they canned him. I'd think he probably had a three Quad runway laid out, trying to build deep fleets to train against, first to build a strong team, then to start doing well internationally, and finally peaking with a medal haul in 2028. It takes a lot to get the ball rolling on some of those things especially when you have spotty attendance at camps and sailors trying to do other things, between school, work, or other sailing ventures. There has been an effort with the Development Team and the camps but again you can go to one or two and then back out, or you can not go at all and show up at Princess Sofia seemingly ready to go.

The great sacking this past fall probably stopped a lot of that momentum and not having a unified plan moving forward will probably be the USST's biggest stumbling block.

There may be an element within the USS board of directors that pushed for the new event slate (including IKA and "Mixed Doublehanded Offshore") so that other countries wouldn't have any more institutional knowledge in a specific class than they did, and there was middling success with the N17 and the 49erFX when the option was presented in 2012. However we then proceeded to throw the baby out with the bathwater when these teams broke up or left Olympic competition altogether, so besides some notes and video we start over every quad from square one.

We're stupid how we're going about the Offshore event even now: Oakcliff, "Young American Sailing Academy", MudRatz, etc. are private entities trying to set up some sort of training program to build 420 sailors into shorthanded offshore sailors. In and of itself this is good, and will eventually build a robust domestic shorthanded fleet which should raise our level of competition. However, again, the runway for this is about three Quads. Meanwhile some nobodies from Long Island paid their way to the "World Doublehanded Offshore Cup" or whatever it was. The qualification for the 2020 World Cup is whoever does best in the Chicago-Mackinac: one race! Where are our Mini sailors? Where are our Volvo veterans? Where are our Figarists, IMOCA crewmembers? You can be damned sure that the French, the English, the Spaniards are handpicking their best Figarists or Mini sailors, while we dick around on Lake Michigan instead of training on the Bay of Biscay.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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It takes a lot to get the ball rolling on some of those things especially when you have spotty attendance at camps and sailors trying to do other things, between school, work, or other sailing ventures.    .... 

this and your other comments point to the culture problem ....   Page's original game plan was to show significant progress in this quad.... Not knowing the culture in the USA and the college system... I thought that was optimistic.... The bottom line... he was dumped right before the rubber hits the road...   .... the  issue IMO would be as you noted....Ours is a mediocre to half assed culture  (if the goal was winning medals)   Likewise on coaching......  god only knows if they are good enough... but certainly you need consistency to develop anyone...including the coaches themselves as coaches.   Collecting pointers from rock star elite coaches is not going to work programmatically.    When the opportunity to get paid big bucks on a gran prix campaign shows up.... off the coaches go.... 

You point to the results from the last two rounds of youth worlds...   I agree... that this performance was a programmatic jump forwards in results.   I though Page was seeing results.... now did any of these sailors project to be better then very very good world class racers.... to actual podium finishers.... I don't know...  Of course, the worry was the transition through college.. when the rest of the world is going for it  but in the USA.... we can only loosely be seen as  developing our talent....   Was there push back from parents and the powers that be that Page's demands were too onerous?

So... as long as the USA is happy to pay for a team with no chance of winning.... a small group of sailors who go for it every quad.    They will be thrilled to take the money and play the USA game and be an Olympian.     As a fan....all we have to root for is hope for lightning in a bottle.... Paine pulled one out  on the last quad....   Sadly, Not much of a fan experience hoping for a miracle. You wind up just cheering the damn flag on the boat every 4 years.  

God only knows where the leadership points to next...   I honestly don't know what they can try....    Do you have any thoughts that are not more shuffling of deck chairs on the titanic?

 

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On 2/20/2020 at 2:49 AM, Tcatman said:

this and your other comments point to the culture problem ....   Page's original game plan was to show significant progress in this quad.... Not knowing the culture in the USA and the college system... I thought that was optimistic.... The bottom line... he was dumped right before the rubber hits the road...   .... the  issue IMO would be as you noted....Ours is a mediocre to half assed culture  (if the goal was winning medals)   Likewise on coaching......  god only knows if they are good enough... but certainly you need consistency to develop anyone...including the coaches themselves as coaches.   Collecting pointers from rock star elite coaches is not going to work programmatically.    When the opportunity to get paid big bucks on a gran prix campaign shows up.... off the coaches go.... 

You point to the results from the last two rounds of youth worlds...   I agree... that this performance was a programmatic jump forwards in results.   I though Page was seeing results.... now did any of these sailors project to be better then very very good world class racers.... to actual podium finishers.... I don't know...  Of course, the worry was the transition through college.. when the rest of the world is going for it  but in the USA.... we can only loosely be seen as  developing our talent....   Was there push back from parents and the powers that be that Page's demands were too onerous?

So... as long as the USA is happy to pay for a team with no chance of winning.... a small group of sailors who go for it every quad.    They will be thrilled to take the money and play the USA game and be an Olympian.     As a fan....all we have to root for is hope for lightning in a bottle.... Paine pulled one out  on the last quad....   Sadly, Not much of a fan experience hoping for a miracle. You wind up just cheering the damn flag on the boat every 4 years.  

God only knows where the leadership points to next...   I honestly don't know what they can try....    Do you have any thoughts that are not more shuffling of deck chairs on the titanic?

 

The solution keeps coming back to nuking USS, but of course that puts an even longer timeline on putting together the pieces, not the least of which are a) funding and b) authority. USS has name recognition, a marketing engine, a rolodex of sponsors, and the perceived authority of being the governing body of yacht racing in the United States and its territories. I believe that the board and staff has the best intentions of getting the Stars & Stripes hoisted behind someone in a wetsuit on a podium, but either through terms of sponsorship, lack of funding, impatient timelines, or other factors, they seem to be quick to throw in the towel and give up on the momentum they already have.

The United States is a "sailing" country, and has as much right to both a maritime and racing heritage as the UK, Holland, Denmark, Australia, New Zealand, et al. All of the people who were listed above have made significant sacrifices in pursuit of qualification and are dedicated athletes, period. I think where we fall short is in:

1. Being able to fully fund athletes. When kids do well at Jr. Worlds, they should get the keys to a new Olympic class boat, a training plan peaking in the next Quad, tickets to the next ODT camp, and a call from their class coach outlining the next step. Caleb famously said he spent $100k a year leading up to the games and $200k in 2016, and that he could have spent more. Young kids should be learning the boat, how to trim it, tune it, and how to race it, not worry about if they're going to be able to make it to the next camp. High level athletes shouldn't be worrying about funding at all, they should be going to all of the major regattas and training at the venues ahead of time, with quality gear, good coaching, and weather knowledge. The RYA spent $1M per medal in Rio, why can't the most prosperous country in human history at least match them for funding?

2. Setting out realistic timelines and goals. The Cowles girls have been sailing the 470 for about a year and a half. Granted, they are world-class i420 sailors so a lot of techniques probably came quickly, but how many guys in your favorite local OD have been sailing the boat for years and still not found that extra gear? There is nothing that replaces time in the boat, and that time in the boat should be accompanied by deliberate practice under expert supervision. You CANNOT get enough hours with good coaching if you're a full-time college student, or even if you take an LOA. Even going to every single training camp isn't going to be enough, you need to be working up for the big events, racing in the big events, losing, regrouping, and training on what you learned.  There are talented kids who can go out and do well in the Trials, but I think you need at least one Quad under your belt to get to the medal race. Couple that with the need for a consistent coach-do you stick with your local guy who's known you since Opti Green, or do you train under a previous medalist, or a professional coach paid by USS? Can you take time off to prevent burnout and go do the Youth America's Cup or the Star Sailors League or the World Match Racing Tour, or does that take too much away from your training in your Olympic class? You'll probably get invitations to go race on big IRC boats, or in championships in keelboat classes. Does this inflate your head, or does it provide respite from weeks and thousands of tacks?

If some of Kim Andersen's comments are to be taken at face value, Sailing is not high on the list for the IOC and there exists the possibility that WS (or whatever iteration it becomes) will stop getting the IOC TV Monies in the future, or that there will be less than 10 medals, or that yachting will be dropped from the program.

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I take home your big message is about realism!  I agree.  You are not going to discover a uniquely american pathway that leads to medals and I think the board and supporters don't want to acknowledge this.  You are not going to survive a cul de sac of 4 years of collegiate sailing..... again realism.   You are also not going to have many 18 to 25 year olds going off training in a single hander or double hander  by themselves and so the social aspect of a great team is  priceless. All of your points are spot on.... obvious and clear and nothing has been left out..... So...  IMO... you just have to be realistic and the powers that be in the US are not.   

Now.... the one positive of this sad outcome ...  Any sailor that does succeed truly gets to tell the heroic story of how they pulled it off on their own with hard work, dedication and true American grit and extraordinary American spirit rising to the occasion...   the perfect American fairy tale.

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4 hours ago, MikeR80 said:

Will there be a double handed / offshore exhibition event at the tokyo games ahead of 2024?

TBD, first big event in the WS calendar is the "Offshore World Championship" to be held in Malta in October, bat flu has put a big asterisk next to everything going to Asia this year.

Unsurprisingly the class that doesn't have an association and seems to be funded entirely by WS interests L30 was picked again for the "Offshore Worlds", considering the perception that sailing is an overly expensive, inaccessible, elitist sport that doesn't make for good television and they decided to choose the event that is absolutely least television friendly and the most expensive option in recent memory...

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Yeah Bill, I was wondering the same thing.

Didn't they recently borrow bailout money with the upcoming IOC payments as collateral?

While I think that cancelling the Olympics is highly unlikely to happen, if they were it will cost a lot of organizations a lot of money.

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1 hour ago, Jethrow said:

Yeah Bill, I was wondering the same thing.

Didn't they recently borrow bailout money with the upcoming IOC payments as collateral?

While I think that cancelling the Olympics is highly unlikely to happen, if they were it will cost a lot of organizations a lot of money.

Yes WS did. And I would be surprised if other organizations hadn’t done likewise. 

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On 2/29/2020 at 10:06 AM, bill4 said:

If Olympics are cancelled due to Coronavirus, methinks WS are totally fucked. They are banking (literally) on TV revenues.

IM wondering if there might be some  middle ground here, ie: no audience / athletes only?? Still a big risk but at least it could keep TV revenue

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  • 4 weeks later...

No 2020 Regatta, likely on for 2021. Nearly everyone is on some variation of quarantine which makes training exceedingly difficult, social distancing factors, marina availability, et al.

Probably not going to be international competition until late this year while each country individually rides their own outbreak wave, I doubt there will be changes to the athlete slates but there were quite a few final selections that were going to be made at Princess Sofia or subsequent class World/Euros. 

Late 2020-Early 2021 regatta results will be interesting to see, not being able to sail the boat for months plus limited gym access should favor the naturally talented but there could be statistical outliers.

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  • 3 months later...

Caleb quit USS to focus on American Magic so Luke Muller becomes USA Finn rep by default:

https://www.ussailing.org/news/lukemuller-usolympicsailingteam/

He has a couple Miami OCR medals and won the 2013 US Laser Nationals but nothing notable in big fleets (17th 2019 FGC, 31st 2018 FGC, 41st 2019 Euros, 29th 2018 Euros), he was 18th of 22 at the Test Event and 10th of 25 at the World Cup in Enoshima. Losing Caleb as a training partner and pushing everything left six months for nCOV do not bode well for his chances. He could possibly have become a contender for 2024(5?) if the Finn hadn't been axed, at this rate I'd be happy if the Stars n' Stripes even made it into the medal race.

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