The first of two major ISAF announcements dropped on Monday with the installation of former British Olympic Association CEO Andy Hunt as the new CEO of the newly renamed World Sailing. We don’t know much about Hunt beyond his various online profiles, which sum up a reasonably successful run as the head of the UK’s 5-ring team and several mostly irrelevant jobs in media and financial management. Hunt’s ’employment’ history shows penchant for ‘Non-Executive’, or advisory-only roles in sporting bodies, which generally means one of two things: Either he loves to be involved in sports management (but not too involved) out of passion or ego, or he’s highly sought after because of his contacts and a willingness to use them.
Either way, where shit-kicking businessman Peter Sowrey was hired to help repair a broken organization before being ousted just 5 months into his tenure, Hunt’s C.V. doesn’t provide any evidence of a similar skillset. Will this affable Pom provide the sorely needed leadership for ISAF World Sailing to regain some of its shredded credibility as it navigates several of the biggest PR disasters its ever faced? We’ll reserve our judgment for now, but click on the video above to meet the man yourself and come to your own conclusions.
As an aside, the video is World Sailing TV’s first official production since renaming itself from the widely ignored ISAF Sailing Channel. That’s the same entity that will spend something like a million dollars a year from now until 2020 on sailing content.
We’ll rephrase that for you: The weak-ass video above – something a high school kid in media class would have been embarrassed to submit to a teacher back in 2011, let alone today – is meant to be a professional work product from a multi-million dollar professional sports media producer.
Discuss the new CEO gig here. Learn more about the craziness behind ISAF World Sailing TV here.
UPDATE: The Final Solution
As ISAF World Sailing’s Marketing Director, Double gold medalist and alpha male Malcolm Page has been rapidly filling in the leadership vacuum at ISAF and trying to singlehandedly make up for a decade of opacity and miscommunication. Page apologized for ISAF missing their self-imposed deadline for releasing the widely awaited report on Malaysia’s misconduct and discrimination against Israeli sailors, but his note went far beyond the usual passive, mealy-mouthed ISAF press release. Call us ‘cautiously optimistic’ that the organization is about to step up to the plate and show some leadership…but only after minimizing their own role in ignoring a problem they knew about for years. From Mal:
The report was completed approximately 24 hours ago. With the decisions and changes that the World Sailing Executive and Council has decided on, it will set a precedent within all sports. So to ensure that the correct procedure is followed, the report has been forwarded to ASOIF and the IOC for their consideration. As soon as we have their opinion and guidance on the report it will be finalised and sent to you.
I assume you understand the importance of getting this right so that the these situations in sport have every chance to not happen again, and in turn understand the slight delay. Sailing has the opportunity to be leaders in this area.
Finally, did anyone check with Larry Ellison to make sure he was cool with bringing the America’s Cup World Series that he owns to Oman in light of the Omanis refusal to allow Israelis visas to the RS:X Worlds last October? You know, the Larry Ellison who donated $10 million dollars to the freakin’ Israeli Defense Forces just last year?