Sailing politics afloat—Sailing News from the U.S. and Beyond
by David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor on 5 Nov 2012
While most of the American public is riveted to this week’s presidential election, the international sailing community has a presidential election of our own on November 10th, namely that of the office of ISAF President.
David Kellett was also ISAF Technical Delegate at the 2008 Olympics in Qingdao © Richard Gladwell www.photosport.co.nz
Current ISAF President Goran Petersson is set to step down from his eight-year stint in November, and a field of three candidates (there’s a refreshing thought) including Carlo Croce (ITA), Eric Tulla (PUR) and David Kellet (AUS) are running for the top job. Inside this issue, Kellet talks about his vision for the position, his style of leadership and 'nails his colors to the mast', directly addressing perceived criticisms of his candidacy.
'In earlier correspondence with you, I have given you a background of myself and my passion for the sport of sailing,' wrote Kellet in an open letter to all national sailing authorities. 'I am a practical, hands-on leader who is very approachable [and] with no hidden agenda. As you can probably gather from my emails and letters, I prepare everything myself and openly express how I feel about matters, no professional presentation, just an honest straightforward approach.'
Kellet, it should be noted, is a veteran racing sailor with 38 Sydney-Hobarts (and counting), as well as Fastnet and Newport-Bermuda experience, to his credit and has served two four-year stints as ISAF VP, as well as a four-year term as ISAF Treasurer. Check out the multi-media reports, inside this issue, to learn more about the ISAF Assembly and election, which will be held this coming weekend in Dun Laoghaire, Ireland.
And in America’s Cup news, Artemis Racing, the Challenger of Record for the 34th AC, has officially launched their first AC72 class wingsail-powered catamaran, despite some initial 'birthing pains'. The christening ceremony took place in front of the team’s base in Alameda, California, with Barbro Osher, the Consul General of Sweden, performing the Champaign rites. 'We are extremely excited to get out sailing with this first boat and the learning opportunity that it represents,' said Juan Kouyoumidjian , the team’s designer. 'Sailing here, in the realities of San Francisco Bay, makes the lessons hard, but extremely relevant.'
Artemis team boss Paul Cayard agrees. 'It’s been a tremendous team effort to design, build and launch the AC72. We are looking forward to valuable training time on the Bay in the coming weeks.' More on Artemis, inside.
Also AC related, Luna Rossa launched their AC72 last week in Auckland, and have already started their sailing program, no doubt in an effort to log precious training time and to try to close the massive experience gap between themselves and Emirates Team New Zealand. Inside, check out ace shooter Carlo Borlenghi’s great image gallery of the team’s silvery cat’s first sail, get Richard Gladwell’s report on the team’s first foiling experience, and also be sure to check out the grilling that the team received, courtesy of the New Zealand sailing media.
And for One Design fans, be sure to check out Gladwell’s interesting piece on past Olympic medalists’ thoughts on kiteboarding versus windsurfing for the 2016 Games. Given that the crucial vote for 2016 Olympic Equipment is about to happen, proponents of both sailing disciplines have been making strong arguments as to why their side should prevail, but Gladwell’s piece, which is essentially a collection of quotes from Olympic greats, offers a far deeper look into the realities of changing from 'planks' to kites.
And finally, be sure to check out the latest reports from the Maui Makani Classic, the Student Yachting World Cup, and get the latest happenings from US Sailing’s recent Annual Meeting Awards Dinner, which just wrapped up in San Francisco.
And finally, irrespective of your political leanings, don’t forget to vote!
May the four winds blow you safely home,
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