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2012 Olympic venue appoints new Directors

by Cailah Leask, Fast Track Sailing on 4 Oct 2008
Ben Ainslie leads the Finn class at the close of day 3 - Olympic Games, Qingdao, China © Ingrid Abery http://www.ingridabery.com
The official 2012 sailing venue, the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy (WPNSA) has announced the appointment of three new Directors. Elected by the WPNSA Board for their commitment to the sport of sailing, Rod Carr OBE, John Derbyshire and triple gold sailing medallist Ben Ainslie OBE have all accepted the offer to be formal Directors of the venue selected to hold the 2012 Olympic sailing and windsurfing competitions.

Each of the new Directors have personally assisted the sport of sailing. Rod Carr, Chief Executive of the Royal Yachting Association since 2000 received an OBE in 2005 for services to sailing, having initiated the successful RYA World Class Performance programme and National Lottery funding. Both instrumental to medal success in Sydney, Athens and Beijing and is now part of the BOA National Olympic Committee.

Rod commented, ‘I am proud to be a formal Director of the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy which has helped produce our GBR sailing stars. The venue is unique in that it can facilitate elite Olympic / Paralympic competitors as well as encourage children to take to the water through the sustainable legacy programme’.

John Derbyshire, RYA Performance Director and Racing Manager, has been responsible for the implementation of the RYA’s World Class Performance programme, and was the Olympic Manager from 1997 to 2000, where GBR made its biggest ever performance improvement, going from 2 Silver medals in Atlanta, to 3 gold and 2 Silver medals in Sydney.

He now runs the world renowned RYA Olympic, Youth and Junior programmes as well as having implemented the World Class Events programme which assists in not only giving more international competitive opportunities, it is designed to assist in raising the standards of Race Officials within the UK.

John has been responsible for the Facilities developments around the UK National Academies and has been a consultant to the WPNSA project since its inception. John, a former dinghy racer himself is now Chairman of the Performance Directors Forum, guiding and influencing sporting / political decisions to the benefit of high performance sport.

Triple gold and silver medallist Ben Ainslie is a household name; his recent golden glory during August 2008 has secured Ben’s position as the most successful Olympic sailor ever in British history. Son of a Whitbread Round the World Race skipper, Ben starting sailing at tender age 8 and won his first medal in Atlanta at just 19. Ben is set for further glory this time on home waters during 2012.

Each of the new Directors bring their own expertise to the 2012 venue and are committed to ensuring it is a first class facility for all water sport events.
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