The festive season is a time for reflection and a time to appreciate others. It is also a time to contemplate achievements - and in our sport there have been many across 2007.
For me personally, the ISAF Centenary celebrations have punctuated 2007 as a key achievement. Throughout the year, ISAF has paid tribute to the first 100 years of ISAF and the evolution of sailing since 1907. I am very proud of the partnership with sailors, clubs, event organizers and national sailing authorities who have supported ISAF and the sport across a wide range of celebratory events. The enthusiasm for the "Sail the World" Weekend on 1-2 September was phenomenal as countries around the globe held various sailing festivities.
Next year the 2008 Olympic Games in China will present the Olympic values to a considerable percentage of the world's population, a magnificent Opportunity for sport and for sailing.
Indeed, 2008 offers us many challenges. However, our overriding challenge is to ensure that sailing remains an accessible sport for all. Let us each have as a small goal to introduce at least one non-sailor to our sport next year.
I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and thank the many volunteers who make our wonderful sport possible - my sincere thanks to you all.
I wish everyone across the sailing world a very happy and peaceful festive season and fair winds in 2008.
Sailing - a lifetime's sport