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RYA statement on new Olympic Events and Equipment for 2016
by Lindsey Bell, RYA
6 May 2012
At its mid-year meetings in Stresa, Italy, the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) has confirmed the Event and Equipment selections which will feature at the 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition in Rio de Janeiro.
Following equipment trials held in Santander, Spain, in March, the Mackay FX, referred to as the 49er FX, is the equipment choice for the new two person women's skiff discipline, while the Nacra 17 was confirmed as the boat to be used in the two person mixed multihull event.
ISAF Council also voted to replace the current men's and women's windsurfing events with kiteboarding events for men and women which will feature at the Olympic Games for the first time.
John Derbyshire, RYA Racing Manager and Performance Director, was present at the ISAF mid-year meetings where the votes took place.
“The 49er FX and the Nacra 17 both performed well in the Santander trials and stand to be great additions to the Olympic sailing programme both in terms of the challenge they present to sailors and their visual appeal,” Derbyshire commented.
“The introduction of Kiteboarding, while an exciting prospect for a new discipline, the decision to replace windsurfing with Kiteboarding will of course be a huge blow to the windsurfing community, and we're disappointed for all those who are working at the coalface of the RYA's windsurfing programmes to deliver activity and British success on the world stage who will be affected most by this decision.”
“Kiteboarding made a solid case for its Olympic inclusion at the March trials,” Derbyshire continued, “and although a surprise that ISAF has voted it into the Olympic programme at this stage, it appears that the Council of ISAF wished to seize the opportunity, rather than wait until 2020.
“This decision will force the pace of change and the RYA is looking forward to the opportunity of working with Kiteboarders and the British Kitesurfing Association in order to develop the talent pathway for this new event, and to using the strengths of our UK Sport lottery funded high performance system that has become the envy of the world so that GBR is well-placed to deliver the first Olympic kiteboarding medals in Rio in four years' time.”
The events to be contested at the 2016 Olympic Games are confirmed as:
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