The ISAF Council followed a conservative approach today when it opted for the same classes to contest the same events in the 2012 Olympic as they had done in the 2008 Olympics.
The only addition is the introduction of the Elliott 6 metre in the Womens Match Racing event, which will make its debut at the 2012 Olympics.
The Council decided on the following equipment, before moving to the more contentious two Womens Two Handed Dinghy and Match Racing Keelboat.
Men’s One Person Dinghy – Laser
Men’s One Person Dinghy Heavy – Finn
Men’s Two Person Dinghy – 470
Men’s Two Person Dinghy High Performance – 49er
Men’s Windsurfer – RS:X
Men’s Keelboat – Star
Women’s One Person Dinghy – Laser Radial
Women’s Windsurfer – RS:X
In the end, after a 90 minute discussion, the decision was made by 19 votes to 16 to stay with the 470 for the Womens Two hander - the Council being the first body at ISAF to vote in favour of the 470 for this event, all week.
In the Match Racing it was a choice of the Elliott 6 Metre or deferral of the decision to a later time. In the end the Council selected the Elliott 6 Metre, designed by New Zealander Greg Elliott and used extensively in Oceania for Match Racing events. From the ISAF website: Women’s Two Person Dinghy
Choice: 470 or 29er XX
A lengthy debate in Madrid. The vote has been cast and now there's a 15 minute break whilst the votes are counted and the decision announced.
Teo Ping LOW (SIN), ISAF Vice-President spoke about the impact of the decision on sailing at the Asian Games, where the 470 has been included in the line up for 2010. 'We’re not against change, we’re not against the equipment. We love the equipment. It’s just a question of timing. But at the moment the status quo is less destructive. Any change in the equipment is a nail in the coffin of women’s sailing in Asian,' he said
John CREBBIN (IRL), Council member representing Group A: 'We have very clear indications on the way forward. From the media and competitors – they want more excitement, more progress, more modern equipment. Our task is to look at the future.'
Fiona KIDD (CAN), Council member representing Women's sailing: 'The 29er has become a major component of youth development programmes. The time for the decision is now. If we do delay it, it will be 16 years before the women get the high performance option that is available for the men.'
Kamen FILLYOV (BUL), Council member representing Group C, pointed to the global financial crisis, 'It will be very difficult for every country to establish a new class.'
Decision: 470 is selected as equipment for Women’s Two Person Dinghy event. Women’s Keelboat Match Racing
Choice: Elliott 6m (Modified), J22, J24, J80, Laser SB3 (Match), Sonar, Star, Ultimate 20, Yngling
The Council has approved Submissions M03-08 and M04-08 so the choice of equipment for the Women's Keelboat Match Racing event can be a non-ISAF International Class when sailed at the Games and does not have to be decided at this meeting. However although the Council have approved Submission M04-08, which gives them the option of delaying the equipment decision, they have not yet decided whether or not they will take up this option.
Decision: Elliott 6m (modified) is selected as equipment for Women’s Keelboat Match Racing event.