I have now seen letters on Sailing Anarchy’s front page from both sides of the keep it or chuck it argument. Of course I am talking about Laser, sorry the boat formerly known as Laser (apologies to Prince) Vs the Aero.
For a start, if classes like the Star and Finn, sailed by many of the world’s top sailors and with a history in the Olympics longer than your arm are not safe then what should give the laser any special considerations other than active and effective lobbying within World Sailing.
The Olympic Games funds, I am led to believe, around 70% of the running costs of our governing body. That same organisation, the IOC, expects sailing to be dynamic, modern, as close as possible gender equal oh, and from a television point of view, be exciting and as even as can be achieved – ie one design.
If reports are to be believed, at least one of the builders of the “one design” Laser Class have been building boats with NON DESIGN features. It would also appear that ILCA hasn’t really done anything constructive (except write a few letters to the offending builder)
I know they (the Laser) are provided equipment in the actual Games so all sailors are (in theory) sailing identical equipment but is that necessarily the case at their individual selection trials? I would suggest probably not.
ICLA is clearly in current disarray with at least one National Class Association having written an open letter to World Sailing concerned that the actions of the ICLA hierarchy does not fit within the constitution of the class.
When we race in a regatta, it is generally taken that the boat that finishes first wins.
I doubt if anyone could argue with that so I really don’t understand – if World Sailing really does listen to its sailors, including the ones selected to test the 3 or 4 classes being evaluated – how there could be any doubt whatsoever which class should be selected for 2024 or will the retention of the Laser for Paris join another of the growing list of decisions by World Sailing that appear to have more to do with politics than the long term good of our sport.
Our sport needs to move with the times as it often has. If it hadn’t the two handed dinghy would still be the Flying Dutchman and not the 49er, there would be no windsurfing and certainly no kitesurfing (we all make mistakes) but to keep the Laser while ditching the Finn would just prove how out of touch World Sailing were with their constituents by leaving no equipment for the sailor of above average build to be competitive in the event that provides them (World Sailing) with the bulk of their operating funds.
It may sound like I am a fan of the RS Aero but that is not actually the case, I have never even sailed one. I am however a firm believer in due process, and if someone or something wins/gets the highest score/the most votes/ they should get the result. Any other decision is more anarchical than this website. – SS.