Here you go, foiling here foiling there, but what is our most valuable asset? In my opinion yachting. Sailors love racing yachts everywhere around the world and as we are speaking 125 beautiful Swan are racing in Porto Cervo, around 1500 sailors there in a mix of wealthy owners and less wealthy crews that opens the door for interesting lives to a lot of sailors.
Sailing is the most modern sport around as it embraces all values of sustainability, with a magic green approach to nature and environment, the Olympics the door to this world, as the Coutts, the Dean Barker, the Ben Ainslie of today, the Paul Cayard, the Paul Elwstrom of the past, came to yachting from olympic sailing, and a lot of past great sailors built up yards, sailmaking companies and built masts and fittings etc. and so we have North and Hood and Harken and Abbott and Borresen and Nautivela etc.
Olympic choice of boats and the format chosen at the Games ended up influencing the formats of all sort of racing, but also the industry and so more stress coupled with monopoli boats are shaping up our sport towards a wrong direction. World Sailing needs to lead the sport and promote a controlled development but not forget what we are and our values.
In the old days we had in average one race a day with upwind finish, now we have just windward leewards and more races, too many in our opinion, so immediately crossing the finishing line we have to get ready for the next race, no time to think through the race just finished, back to shore only need to rest with no social life in a crescendo of stress that has made sailing a mirror of the troublesome working environment of this century.
Let’s pull the brakes, take a deep breath and give value and honour our sport, sailing and yachting. Once today’s World Sailing was the International Yacht Racing Union, we lost racing union and yacht, it became International Sailing Federation, we have now lost federation, let’s try to make sure that for the next change we do not loose sailing…