Designer Greg Elliott on the eviction of the Olympic Keelboat in 2016
by Richard Gladwell on 31 May 2011
Greg Elliott, designer of the Womens Olympic Keelboat, is understandably not pleased with the decision by the International Sailing Federation to drop the Womens (and Mens) Keelboats from the 2016 Olympics in Brazil. He is even more surprised that a boat and event into which so much effort has been dropped before even sailing in the Olympics.
The Elliott 6 brings some spectacle to the DeltaLloyd Regatta in Medemblik, the Netherlands. Delta Lloyd Regatta - © Sander van der Borch http://www.sandervanderborch.com
While he has more than a few queries over what is happening within the ISAF and the direction of the sport, Elliott says his main focus is on the 2012 Olympics, in which his design will compete, and says that it will be as perfect as he can make it.
Elliott's designs have formed the basis of many club youth fleets of which the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron's is probably the most significant and successful.
With the ISAF's Olympic Commission advocating a more egalitarian approach to the Event and Equipment options, one would have though that the use of club provided fleets, and supplied equipment would have been a way to both grow the sport in developing countries, and reduce the cost of Olympic competition.
In this interview Elliott explains how this can be achieved, and gives his thoughts on some other areas of the sport such as the America's Cup.