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22 December 2003, 10:14 am
*Drops Again*
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A lot of sailors, MNA's and other persons have complained about the situation concerning "no drops" during the past month since the ISAF meeting in Barcelona. Their voices have been heard !
I believe this case proves, that ISAF is probably nearer to the sailors, than most other sports organisation in the world. ISAF Council and President Paul Henderson earn great respect. ISAF have listened to the sailors, MNA's, classes etc., taken the consequence and reversed the decision. Well done !

Not many other world organisations are prepared to change/reverse a decision as quickly as this, when they experience that a decision is not the best for the sport for the moment.

In my opinion, we probably have one of the most transparent sports organisations in the world, where every submission, decision, reports and minutes are put on the website, and every sailor in the world is in principle able to read about this all along the decision process, and if necessary give her/his voice to the MNA or class representatives before the ISAF meetings.

Personally I believe that such a decision should not be taken this close to the Olympics, and we have an exceptional opportunity to run test on formats and scoring in the bigger graded events in the year just after the Olympics, so this is the proper time to do this. We can make a final decision on this in November 2005, for the Olympics in 2008, then we have 3 years to implement such changes in graded events and championships, so every sailor in the world can prepare themselves through competitions at many levels before the next Olympics.

We do not necessarily have to change the scoring system, if we want the medal winning sailors to be on the water in the last race. We could just as well change the format and create finals in our sport, where we secure the excitement about the medals until the last race - and this would most certainly attract media to cover our sport even more intensively than now, and at the same time make it more understandable to the public.

We could still run qualification series - 6-8-10 races - and then pick, for example, the 6 best teams/sailors to compete in the finals. The format here could be: in the first three races the last boat is knocked out. Hereafter the remaining 3 boats sail until one boat has won two races - this will be the Gold Medal winner and this will always occur in the last race. If there is a tie between the two other boats, they will be ranked in the order of their score in their last race.

Television, audience and everybody else can be sure, that the medal winners always are found in the last race - nobody will be on the shore not having to sail the last race. Such a format will secure the excitement until the last race in the event - the boat crossing the finish line in the last race will be the Gold Medal winner. Our sport will become much more media friendly, especially to show on TV and internet (live streaming), as well as to report on and to cover.

Secretary General - Danish Sailing Association
Dan Ibsen
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