Olympic results with and without discard

Earlier this year ISAF President Paul Henderson caused a lot of consternation by stating there would be no discard in the Olympics.

As a result of pressure from coaches and competitors who did not believe in themselves this decision was rescinded and one discard was reinstated, with the exception of the 49er where two discards were allowed.

What has this meant:

Out of 11 events the gold medal only changed in one class; the Womens Windsurfing where ITA placed third with a discard come first and FRA placed first with a discard come third.

In the Laser and 470 W classes the second and third places are reversed when not applying the discard. In the 470 W and Yngling AUS and NED would have replaced DEN and DEN if no discard had been applied.

The results show that the prophets of doom would have been proven wrong when they stated that there would have been major differences. The saying that cream always rises to the top is correct and especially in the Finn where Ben Ainslie, who had an early DSQ, still won under both scoring systems.

Is it not time for ISAF to undertake some experimental scoring in major events over the next 3 years to consider no discards in the 2008 Olympics.

-- Ronnie R McCracken, ISAF International Judge, Hong Kong

Editor: The table of results wouldn't render well in plain text email, so I've posted it at http://scuttlebutteurope.com/discard.php
http://www.sail-world.com/14766