ISAF is delighted to announce that Hugh Styles (GBR) has been appointed as the World Youth Sailing Trust's coach and will be present at the 2011 ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships in Zadar, Croatia to coach sailors on ISAF's Athlete Participation Programme.
Styles, who finished sixth in the Tornado at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, has 20 years of elite level competitions experience and will bring invaluable knowledge to the sailors who are selected as part of the Athlete Participation Programme.
"I like to think I can be a role model to the youth sailors,"
said Styles. "I've come from a background of sailing in the Laser but I have experience in two person dinghies and catamarans as well. In each of those areas I have been able to achieve a really high level.
"I've won medals at World and International Championships and been successful in teams in the Extreme 40s and races like the Sydney to Hobart."
The sailors on the Athlete Participation Programme will be able to benefit from Styles' extensive knowledge and experience of Olympic Sailing and coaching.
Having coached a wide spectrum of athletes ranging from Optimist sailors to Olympic athletes and professional sailors, who have gone on to achieve domestic and international success, Styles plans to bring the athletes together before the 2011 ISAF Youth Worlds.
"The focus is to try and connect with all of the participants before the event. There is a massive opportunity to use technology and establish links with people through social networking websites such as facebook and twitter.
"I would like to be in a position that when we come to the event we are not meeting people for the first time. Social networking is a massive benefit and the forum side of it will help us build towards the 2011 Youth Worlds and onwards."
The 36-year-old from Poole, Dorset is a Royal Yachting Association qualified Level Three Racing Coach. From 2003-2004 Styles was the RYA Hobie 16 Class Coach and focused on a squad of eight sailors who delivered an ISAF Youth Worlds gold medal for Great Britain.
With a strong coaching methodology and success in the past Styles already has plans and goals in place for the 2011 ISAF Youth Worlds.
"We are looking to give everybody the best opportunity to achieve their ultimate goals and personal bests. Whether it is to just be in every race, place in the top ten or win the regatta it doesn't matter. It is about allowing people to achieve their personal goals and the way we measure is through our coaching approach.
"This will focus on the individual with an initial assessment period before the event via social mediums to see what their needs are. Having done that we can benchmark their aims and objectives.
"When we come out of the event they will have an individual legacy that will help to positively contribute to their learning and improvement in the future. Through the opportunities they have had at the event the sailors will be able to have a structure going forward and will ultimately help them become the next Olympians, America's Cup Sailors or Round the World Yachts people."
The ISAF Youth Worlds take place from 7-16 July in Zadar, Croatia this year and Styles is looking past this year's event and focusing on the long term legacy.
"I hope that in the next 5-10 years we can raise the game of youth sailing internationally and with the ever increasing ability to get online more people will be able to see what is going on in real time.
"The legacy of this event is really important because it builds into our sport. The ISAF Youth Worlds can help us develop links with the emerging nations in Asia, Africa and South America and from there we can build more opportunities for these countries to become even more successful."
On the appointment of Hugh Styles, World Youth Sailing Trust Chairman Carlos Ribeiro Ferreira said, "The World Youth Sailing Trust look forward to working with Hugh as we continue to support young sailors from emerging nations at the ISAF Youth World Championships.
"Hugh has fantastic credentials both as a competitor and as a coach and through his experience we hope to achieve the Trust's aim of ensuring young sailors return home after the ISAF Worlds enriched by the experience."
ISAF Youth Worlds Site
ISAF Youth Worlds Facebook Page
ISAF Youth Worlds Twitter Page
World Youth Sailing Trust Microsite