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Ladies Windsurfing Trials, by U.S. Sailing


Delta Blues

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Truth is always stranger than fiction:

 

http://www.ussailing.org/bod/FY2008_Board_...16_APPROVED.pdf

Olympic Report. Executive Director Leighton shared that US SAILING’s expenses associated with the Article 15 hearings and arbitration regarding the Women’s Windsurfing athlete selection is projected to be $120,000.

 

http://www.ussailing.org/bod/BOD_Minutes_2...21_APPROVED.pdf

The cost of the Olympic Sailing Team arbitration ($145,000 so far) has removed most of the elasticity in the budget of both the Association and the Olympic Sailing Committee.

 

So a little rip in a windsurfing sail ends up costing U.S. Sailing $145,000 to sort out. Just why does it cost anything at all? Don't they have volunteers, who are experts in their fields who can handle this stuff? Just why do they have to spend $145,000? Would they be willing to provide an itemized list of those who received this money and what they got paid for?

 

But haven't they told us repeatedly that the Olympic money and the Associations money is separate? Just why is there the report that "Olympic Sailing Team arbitration ($145,000 so far) has removed most of the elasticity in the budget of both the Association and the Olympic Sailing Committee"???

 

How could this $145,000 expenditure remove any elasticity in the association's budget?

 

Fool me once dude, fool me once.

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We can all thank US Sailing's selection process for helping a young girl attain her dream of attending the Olympics in a class with zero international caliber competition in the US. Our qualifying system sent someone who, according to her blog, "had big problems with my pumping technique upwind" on the first day. So glad we went through all that $ to send someone who is still learning windsurf racing basics. And loved her video spot on NBC.com essentially stating that, "we suck".

 

Just because a country qualifies for the Olympics based on IOC or ISAF criteria, should not mean the US supports the bid, we need stricter international ranking qualifications to ensure those that do sail for the US are good enough for the stage we send them to and don’t waste our money debating who is going to go represent the US for last place.

 

The entire US Trials protest/lawsuit, should have been proof enough we just weren't ready for the Olympic Games in this class

 

I congratulate Nancy on her success is US women’s windsurfing circles, however this illustrates just how broken our system is.

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We can all thank US Sailing's selection process for helping a young girl attain her dream of attending the Olympics in a class with zero international caliber competition in the US. Our qualifying system sent someone who, according to her blog, "had big problems with my pumping technique upwind" on the first day. So glad we went through all that $ to send someone who is still learning windsurf racing basics. And loved her video spot on NBC.com essentially stating that, "we suck".

 

Just because a country qualifies for the Olympics based on IOC or ISAF criteria, should not mean the US supports the bid, we need stricter international ranking qualifications to ensure those that do sail for the US are good enough for the stage we send them to and don’t waste our money debating who is going to go represent the US for last place.

 

The entire US Trials protest/lawsuit, should have been proof enough we just weren't ready for the Olympic Games in this class

 

I congratulate Nancy on her success is US women’s windsurfing circles, however this illustrates just how broken our system is.

 

Canada has that system. Qualify to go, but if their board doesn't think there's a shot at a medal, they don't send anyone.

The US has the opposite system, qualify to go, and go. I think the US system more closely fits the Olympic spirit. The US did qualify for a spot at the regatta, and I think it's good that we sent someone to compete.

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I think it's good that we sent someone to compete.

And maybe you'll be a bit less crap now there's one moreperson in the US who knows a bit more about it...

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I don't buy the whole "If you don't think you'll medal, don't go" bullshit, but if you know you'll be last, then I think those resources are best spent elsewhere.

 

Plus, for 140K, they could have sent Nancy all around the world to race against top level competition that may have prepared her a little better.

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Doghouse, I have to agree with Another 505; the Olympics are supposed to be about about friendly competition between nations. At least they started out that way. They are not, as the Media would like us to think, the highest competition in sport. There are just too many good people left out, because of the limited representation per country. I would love to know why Canada has it's policy.

 

It used to be that we would all dote on, for example, somebody competing in the swimming from a country that didn't even have a swim team. Even if they came in last by a lot, it was a cause for celebration- by everyone. The Jamaican Bobsled team comes to mind. It used to be about inclusion. Now it seems to be about exclusion.

 

Jim McKay got it. (is that how you spell his name?) The spirit changed. What happened?

 

<_<

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Doghouse, I have to agree with Another 505; the Olympics are supposed to be about about friendly competition between nations. At least they started out that way. They are not, as the Media would like us to think, the highest competition in sport. There are just too many good people left out, because of the limited representation per country. I would love to know why Canada has it's policy.

 

It used to be that we would all dote on, for example, somebody competing in the swimming from a country that didn't even have a swim team. Even if they came in last by a lot, it was a cause for celebration- by everyone. The Jamaican Bobsled team comes to mind. It used to be about inclusion. Now it seems to be about exclusion.

 

Jim McKay got it. (is that how you spell his name?) The spirit changed. What happened?

 

<_<

 

So do I. Did you read what I said?

"I don't buy the whole 'If you don't think you'll medal, don't go' bullshit"

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Think about it from this aspect, there were 6 dudes and 7 chicas who went to the U.S. Olympic trials on windsurfing. Is it coveted? How hard did the winner have to work at it to get to China? Everyone talks about the price of admission in sailing in the Olympics. Windsurfers have to be the cheapest one going. Why aren't there zillions fighting to go to the Olympics on a windsurfer? Just think, you could have gone to the Olympic trials and be ranked 7th (without even trying) in the nation as a dude and have bragging rights for the rest of your life.

 

The point about sending some to the Olympics and not sending others has merit. Is the dude and chica we sent to Qingdao working on benchmarking and are they gong to become unbelievably good candidates in 2012 in London? If so, then it is good to send them to Qingdao for the experience. If their plans are to get jobs as soon as Qingdao is over, then there must be a decent reason to take money away from other sailors who have a long range plan to medal to fund someone's "great experience" in Qingdao.

 

Remember that the USOC has money to give away, but they give it away based on performance. The performance criteria is how many medals were won at the last games. So far the U.S. has 2 (out of 11). Funding is pale without a smashing success.

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So DB, are you going to go and find out where that 145k was spent?

 

Personally, I'm guessing it was on travel expenses and conference room rental.

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So DB, are you going to go and find out where that 145k was spent?

 

Personally, I'm guessing it was on travel expenses and conference room rental.

 

The Arb hearing was in US Sailing's legal counsel Charlie Cook's Rhode Island office. So, no travel expenses for US Sailing. Maybe Cook's firm charges by the square inch for conference room rental.

 

DB, and anyone else, is probably going to have to go the Freedom of Information route to get the granular detail that is going to be necessary to find out where the money went - otherwise, why wouldn't US Sailing have posted it already?

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So do I. Did you read what I said?

"I don't buy the whole 'If you don't think you'll medal, don't go' bullshit"

 

And then ended it by asking whether it was better to allocate resources to where? I should have asked what you meant by that. If I read something into the post that wasn't there, I apologize.

 

:unsure:

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And then ended it by asking whether it was better to allocate resources to where? I should have asked what you meant by that. If I read something into the post that wasn't there, I apologize.

 

:unsure:

 

No problemo. I was saying that the resources wasted on that dumb arbitration would have been better served getting ready to go to Beijing by having her go train against better competition

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The Arb hearing was in US Sailing's legal counsel Charlie Cook's Rhode Island office. So, no travel expenses for US Sailing. Maybe Cook's firm charges by the square inch for conference room rental.

 

DB, and anyone else, is probably going to have to go the Freedom of Information route to get the granular detail that is going to be necessary to find out where the money went - otherwise, why wouldn't US Sailing have posted it already?

 

We'll never find out. Here's why -

1. I was taught that financial statements are created to tell a story, and the creator of the financial statements get to tell the story they want told. If you look at any of U.S. Sailing's financials, the details are always hidden, but there is a change happening where even the big titles are disappearing and the story even more hidden.

 

2. The Freedom of Information Act only applies to government agencies. U.S. Sailing is a non-stock charitable New York corporation with offices in Rhode Island. FOIA does not apply to them.

 

My questions about who got the money and why is rhetorical, because I don't get how you need to hire lawyers or expert witnesses to decide if a tear on a sail is a tear on a sail? Really, we have all lived through these things, we all know what its like. This is why they only use U.S. Sailing certified judges at these events. Sure the one lass let the time limit expire for filing redress and went to the (I think) the USOC to get the time limit extended. Sure the hearing had to be re-opened (with volunteer judges, they are volunteer aren't they?) and they came to the same result.

 

Has anyone seen pictures of this tear on the net by the way?

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We'll never find out. Here's why -

1. I was taught that financial statements are created to tell a story, and the creator of the financial statements get to tell the story they want told. If you look at any of U.S. Sailing's financials, the details are always hidden, but there is a change happening where even the big titles are disappearing and the story even more hidden.

 

2. The Freedom of Information Act only applies to government agencies. U.S. Sailing is a non-stock charitable New York corporation with offices in Rhode Island. FOIA does not apply to them.

 

My questions about who got the money and why is rhetorical, because I don't get how you need to hire lawyers or expert witnesses to decide if a tear on a sail is a tear on a sail? Really, we have all lived through these things, we all know what its like. This is why they only use U.S. Sailing certified judges at these events. Sure the one lass let the time limit expire for filing redress and went to the (I think) the USOC to get the time limit extended. Sure the hearing had to be re-opened (with volunteer judges, they are volunteer aren't they?) and they came to the same result.

 

Has anyone seen pictures of this tear on the net by the way?

 

Yes, DB, and interesting question isn't it as to why if the evidence of the tear was so overwhelmingly in favor of US Sailing, you'd think they would have released those photo's when they issued their press release on their victory.

 

There are several serious questions about procedure that need to be formally asked and answered.

 

Here's a question, rhetorical of course, because I for sure have no inside knowledge on what happens within US Sailing, because I am just a member, and therefore not privy to inside info - but did this whole Farrah Hall issue put US Sailing on the radar screen of the USOC, and might the behavior of US Sailing judges and others in this equation eventually call into question some of the procedures relative to due process within the structure of US Sailing?

 

And Delta, it does matter who got the money. It always does. Are you too young to have learned from Watergate? Follow the money.

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We'll never find out. Here's why -

1. I was taught that financial statements are created to tell a story, and the creator of the financial statements get to tell the story they want told. If you look at any of U.S. Sailing's financials, the details are always hidden, but there is a change happening where even the big titles are disappearing and the story even more hidden.

 

2. The Freedom of Information Act only applies to government agencies. U.S. Sailing is a non-stock charitable New York corporation with offices in Rhode Island. FOIA does not apply to them.

 

My questions about who got the money and why is rhetorical, because I don't get how you need to hire lawyers or expert witnesses to decide if a tear on a sail is a tear on a sail? Really, we have all lived through these things, we all know what its like. This is why they only use U.S. Sailing certified judges at these events. Sure the one lass let the time limit expire for filing redress and went to the (I think) the USOC to get the time limit extended. Sure the hearing had to be re-opened (with volunteer judges, they are volunteer aren't they?) and they came to the same result.

 

Has anyone seen pictures of this tear on the net by the way?

 

To your pioint 2 - I'm not certain you are correct. US Sailing gets its power over the sport because of an Act of Congress that empowers the USOC. There is, at least technically, oversight of the USOC by Congress, and because this is a matter directly related to the Olympics, some lawyer might want to argue that FIOA is applicable to this specific case. If nothing else, some lawyer would make some money for himself by trying to argue this, or if done pro bono and successful, end up with a damn good reputation.

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Think about it from this aspect, there were 6 dudes and 7 chicas who went to the U.S. Olympic trials on windsurfing. Is it coveted? How hard did the winner have to work at it to get to China? Everyone talks about the price of admission in sailing in the Olympics. Windsurfers have to be the cheapest one going. Why aren't there zillions fighting to go to the Olympics on a windsurfer? Just think, you could have gone to the Olympic trials and be ranked 7th (without even trying) in the nation as a dude and have bragging rights for the rest of your life.

 

The point about sending some to the Olympics and not sending others has merit. Is the dude and chica we sent to Qingdao working on benchmarking and are they gong to become unbelievably good candidates in 2012 in London? If so, then it is good to send them to Qingdao for the experience. If their plans are to get jobs as soon as Qingdao is over, then there must be a decent reason to take money away from other sailors who have a long range plan to medal to fund someone's "great experience" in Qingdao.

 

Remember that the USOC has money to give away, but they give it away based on performance. The performance criteria is how many medals were won at the last games. So far the U.S. has 2 (out of 11). Funding is pale without a smashing success.

 

 

That's a great question, why aren't there more people competing? A think the lack of a national program is a good place to start. Windsurfers are usually middle-class folks who fund their own campaigns, difficult to do on your own. How is the US helping to develop its athletes? Don't want to get political but with all the wealth we have in this country where is the $ going? In other countries Olympic hopefuls become gov't employees and train full-time with coaches. Must be nice.

 

Are you saying Ben and Nancy don't ever intend to medal? How do you know that? With 4 years between events it's difficult to project who intends to make a career out of this, should you send candidate X b/c they say they are going to do multiple Olympics? What if you were to send a lesser sailor b/c you thought they had a better future but then they stopped sailing unexpectedly, that would not be fair to the one who was bumped and better at the time. I think sending the best person at the time is fair to everyone.

 

The whole funding issue is a catch 22. If you don't fund programs and athletes you most likely won't have good results, but how can you expect results without a structured and funded program?

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We'll never find out. Here's why -

1. I was taught that financial statements are created to tell a story, and the creator of the financial statements get to tell the story they want told. If you look at any of U.S. Sailing's financials, the details are always hidden, but there is a change happening where even the big titles are disappearing and the story even more hidden.

 

2. The Freedom of Information Act only applies to government agencies. U.S. Sailing is a non-stock charitable New York corporation with offices in Rhode Island. FOIA does not apply to them.

 

My questions about who got the money and why is rhetorical, because I don't get how you need to hire lawyers or expert witnesses to decide if a tear on a sail is a tear on a sail? Really, we have all lived through these things, we all know what its like. This is why they only use U.S. Sailing certified judges at these events. Sure the one lass let the time limit expire for filing redress and went to the (I think) the USOC to get the time limit extended. Sure the hearing had to be re-opened (with volunteer judges, they are volunteer aren't they?) and they came to the same result.

 

Has anyone seen pictures of this tear on the net by the way?

 

The arbitration was the majority of the expense, it cost 10s of thousands to file with the American Arbitration Association. I’m sure flying out witnesses and their lodging/per diem added up. This had to be done for the reopening of the hearing and the arbitration. Since Hall had an attorney and expert witnesses US sailing had to do the same to match what she was doing. Hall attempted to make up for a lack of a quality argument with quantity of witnesses and complaints.

 

Remember US sailing was defending its reputation so they had to ensure they did all they could to prove they were right. Rios was awarded redress again at the re-opening of the hearing. That didn’t mean much to Hall b/c she felt since it was the same committee that they were bias. Understandable, it should be noted that the rules say to use the same jury again though. The arbitration was dismissed due to Hall's lack of a case. This was an independent party saying that her argument was not enough overturn the race committee’s ruling.

 

 

 

US sailing could have handled the whole thing better from the start. I hope they iron out their processes so something like this never happens again. The athletes need to make sure they understand the rules so they aren’t surprised by a ruling. This whole incident was a huge waste of money and time; both for US sailing and the athletes.

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