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ISAF Conference- Near-miss for Windsurfing in Olympic re-open call

by Richard Gladwell on 10 Nov 2012
Has Dorian van Rijsselberge (NED) been the final Gold Medalist in the Mens Windsurfing event? © Richard Gladwell www.richardgladwell.com

The ISAF Council failed to support moves to re-open the topic of the 2016 Olympic Events and the vexed issue of Windsurfing and Kiteboarding.

The move to re-open the decision made at the Mid-Year meeting of the ISAF Council in Stresa, Italy failed to gain the threshold of 75% support gaining 26 in favour of re-opening and 12 against. The threshold was missed by just two votes - with 28.5 of the 38 ISAF Councillors being required to back the re-open move.

Despite failing to reach the re-open threshold, the point remains that the Kiteboarding event arguably progresses to the 2016 Olympics without the support of the majority of the ISAF Council. Whether that is in the best interests of sailing may be tested in the ISAF Annual General Meeting tomorrow.

While it could be argued that some Councillors could have voted for the matter to be opened, and then still voted for the Kites, on the numbers it is unlikely that the 50% majority would have been reached in favour of Kites.

The submissions on the decision were voted in three tranches, rather than just a simple vote to on the Re-open question being taken.

According to a media statement issued by the ISAF ahead of the meeting, The final twist in the tail could be seen at the Annual General Meeting of the ISAF Member National Authorities on 10 November. The members present at the AGM review any Regulations made or amended in any substantive way by the Council since the last Ordinary Meeting which was in November 2011. As defined in the Articles of ISAF, decisions at the General Meeting shall be taken by a simple majority of votes of those present and entitled to vote.

In other decisions at the Meeting held in Dun Laoghire, Ireland, the ISAF Council have approved the four core events and equipment for the 2020 Olympics. being the Men's One Person Dinghy - Laser; Women's One Person Dinghy - Laser Radial; Men's Skiff - 49er; Women's Skiff - 49erFX.

The Finn and 470 (Mens and Womens) were also attempting to gain support as core events/equipment (which would lock them in as events for the 2020 Olympics).

Although it was expected that the Laser and Laser Radial would be confirmed, and the Mens 49er maybe so, it is a huge vote of confidence by the ISAF Council in the 49erFX, which has not yet sailed in an Olympic regatta, but is now confirmed for the next two Olympics..

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