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ISAF Annual Conference, wraps up in Sanya ISAF Annual Conference, wraps up in Sanya
A two day meeting of the ISAF Council followed by the Annual General Meeting drew the 2015 Annual Conference to a close in Sanya,... ISAF Annual Conference, wraps up in Sanya

Annual Conference - ISAFSanya – A two day meeting of the ISAF Council followed by the Annual General Meeting drew the 2015 Annual Conference to a close in Sanya, China.

More than 500 delegates met on the Chinese island of Hainan from 7 – 14 November to make the decisions that will shape the future of sailing into the new year. The meeting of ISAF Council, the final decision making body of ISAF, voted on the recommendations made by the ISAF committees throughout the week.

ISAF President Carlo Croce delivered his report to ISAF Council on 13 November touching on the spirit within the current ISAF Executive Committee as well as the goals of the federation. The report is available to view on the ISAF website here –

ISAF Vice Presidents’ Reports

Nazli Imre gave an overview of the activity within training and development at ISAF. The 2015 Emerging Nations Program was reviewed and was viewed as success with five continental clinics bringing in 105 sailors and 48 coaches from 38 nations. As a result of spreading the sport, the 2015 Youth Worlds is set to be a record breaker. Sailors from 80 nations will head to Langkawi this December, smashing the previous record of 67 nations.

ISAF Vice President Gary Jobson gave an overview of the Committees he covers such as Racing Rules and the Oceanic and Offshore Committee as well as giving an update on the Marketing and Media activities. Jobson also spoke about the Live TV at the World Cup events throughout 2015 and outlined the plans to push ahead for further live coverage in 2016 building up to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

Chris Atkins has been working closely with ISAF’s Race Officials, most notably those who were at the Aquece Rio – International Sailing Regatta where he was able to see first-hand the expectations and pressures the Race Officials were on. Atkins praised them for their decisions and their continued diligence and excellence. Atkins also touched upon the upcoming African qualification regatta for the Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition. Algeria will hold the first qualifier in the Laser, Laser Radial and RS:X and will feature sailors from 10 nations gunning for a single spot.

Quanhai Li spoke about the success of Sailing World Cup Qingdao which acted as a Rio 2016 Olympic qualifier in the Men’s and Women’s 470, Finn and Nacra 17. Li mentioned that there were 200 volunteers and 120 media in attendance.

Scott Perry has been looking after Para World Sailing and mentioned that the upcoming 2015 Para World Sailing Championships in Melbourne, Australia will welcome a total of 31 nations to the event with a possibility of 2 -3 further countries.

Adrienne Greenwood gave an update on the 2015 ISAF Youth Match Racing World Championship in Swinoujscie, Poland. Sam Gilmour (AUS) overcame Joachim Aschenbrenner (DEN) in what was a reversal of the result from the inaugural World Championship in Helsinki, Finland in 2014. The event continues to grow with bids to be received for the 2017 edition early next year.

Greenwood also spoke about the ISAF Women’s Match Racing World Championship which was won by ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year nominee Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen (DEN) and the ISAF Team Racing World Championship that was held in Rutland, Great Britain.

Member National Authorities Movements

Three new members were welcomed into ISAF. The Nicaragua Federation of Sailing and St Vincent and the Grenadines Sailing Association were welcomed as full members of ISAF with the Anguilla Sailing Association becoming an associate member.

The Montserrat Yachting Association resigned as an ISAF associate member.

New Committee Structure

A new structure of the ISAF Committees commencing in 2017 was approved.

The Match Racing Committee was reformed into a Sub-committee that will report into the Events Committee. The Youth Worlds Sub-committee were changed to the Youth Events Sub-committee.

The Windsurfing and Kiteboarding Committee and the Empirical Handicap Sub-committee were discontinued.

The Regional Games and Development & Youth Committee were combined into a single Development and Regions Committee with a Regional Games Sub-committee created. The ISAF Sail Rankings and Match Racing Rankings Sub-committees were changed into Working Parties.

Finally, the Disabled Sailing Committee’s name change to the Para World Sailing Committee was approved.

Equipment and Racing Rules of Sailing

The 2015 Annual Conference was the final opportunity for the Equipment Committee and the Racing Rules Committee to review submissions relating to the 2017-2020 versions of the Equipment and Racing Rules of Sailing.

A large number of submissions were received in advance of the Annual Conference and the expert committees made their recommendations to ISAF Council. Several of the recommendations were approved and now the hard work begins for the changes to be implemented in time for the publication of the rules books in 2016.

Rio 2016

ISAF Technical Delegate Alastair Fox and Rio 2016 Sailing Manager Walter Boddener presented on the Olympic Sailing Competition.

Fox spoke about the competition schedule, race officials, pollution concerns and lessons learnt from the test event in August. Boddener gave an update on the Marina da Gloria that is recently undergoing renovations. The handover is expected in April 2016 and ready for competition. Flamengo Park, adjacent to Marina da Gloria will also make up part of the venue.

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