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10 November 2009, 08:56 am
Strategy Key Focus During First Half Of ISAF Annual Conference
The Racing Rules Committee at their meeting in Busan today
The Racing Rules Committee at their meeting in Busan today

ISAF Annual Conference 2009
Busan, Korea

The Racing Rules of Sailing together with equipment and classes went under the spotlight today at the midway point of the ISAF Annual Conference in Busan, Korea.
After six days of meetings in Korea, where the focus has ranged from youth and development to Empirical Handicaps, today the Annual Conference of the International Sailing Federation got back to basics with the main Committee meetings focussing on two core areas: The Racing Rules of Sailing and sailing equipment.

These two key meetings come at the midway stage of this year's Conference, the first ISAF Conference since the new Council and Committees for 2009-2012 were named at the ISAF General Assembly last year. Consequently a major focus of this year's Conference has been on establishing strategy for the next three years with much debate earlier in the week on development issues, particularly training and grassroots participation. In the Race Officials Committee meeting yesterday there was also lengthy discussion on how to increase the number of ISAF International Race Officials worldwide, particularly in areas such as South America and Asia. The environment and how to establish and promote sound environmental practices has also been a topic raised in many of the meeting rooms.

Tonight in Busan, the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award winners will be announced at a celebratory dinner and presentation at the Busan Yacht Club. World Sailor is a chance to celebrate the sport, but also a bookmark in the Conference. Tomorrow, the focus will be on the meetings of the Events Committee - ISAF's key Committee relating to ISAF Events and the Olympic Sailing Competition - and Oceanic and Offshore Committee, whose remit covers the vast range of offshore sailing events. Following these meetings, on Wednesday evening all the recommendations from the ISAF Committees are compiled and prepared for the start of the ISAF Council meeting, which takes place over three days from Thursday afternoon through to Saturday. The Council - composed of members representing the ISAF Member National Authorities (MNAs), along with the ISAF Executive Committee and one representative from each of the ISAF Classes, Offshore sailing and Women's sailing - is ISAF's final decision-making body, and it is ultimately the conclusions reached in their meetings in Korea this week which will filter out to the rest of the sailing world.

ISAF is posting daily reports from the meeting rooms in Korea, together with interviews with some of the key players involved in events and issues under discussion in Korea this year.

Interviews already posted included:

Phil Jones - Chairman of the new Olympic Commission
Ben Barger - Chairman of the Athletes' Commission
Fiona Kidd - Chairman of the ISAF Youth World Championship Sub-committee
John Longley - Event Director for the Perth 2011 ISAF Sailing World Championships

To read all reports, interviews, download meeting papers and schedules, or find out more about ISAF's deicision-making process, visit the ISAF Meetings microsite at www.sailing.org/meetings.

To find out more about the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards, this year's nominees and more, visit www.sailing.org/worldsailors.

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