A select group of elite sailors, coaches, and high performance experts from around the world will be attending the Yachting New Zealand's High Performance Summit in Auckland from 13-15 February 2003.
The invite list was restricted to ten internationals who are all classed as world leaders for their contributions to Olympic level Yachting. Together they boast an impressive tally of 12 Olympic medals. They include:- Buddy Melges (USA); John Kolius (USA); Ib Anderson (DEN); Bjourn Johansson (SWE); Jim Saltonstall (GBR); Victor Kovalenko (UKR/AUS); Mike Fletcher (AUS); Valentin Mankin (UKR/ITA); and Laurent Esquires (FRA). Most of them have come to New Zealand specifically for the Summit . They will all be actively involved in the content, delivering presentations on their particular areas of speciality.
The initiative driven by Yachting New Zealand in conjunction with SPARC (Sport and Recreation New Zealand) is a first for New Zealand. It is an ideas exchanging exercise, in a bid to increase the level of knowledge and ultimately the level of sailing around the World. The three day programme will incorporate discussion sessions and forums combined with social activities, including a day out on the water to view Race One of the America's Cup.
Yachting New Zealand's Hi gh Performance Manager, Peter Lester will represent one of the twenty New Zealand attendees alongside Yachting New Zealand coaches', High Performance sailors, and New Zealand Academy of Sport representative's. Lester feels the Summit is a crucial step in ensuring New Zealand's future Olympic success in the sport, "Yachting is New Zealand's most successful Olympic sport which is something that we are working hard to maintain and build on, in order to do this we need to establish strong bonds with those doing the same thing in other parts of the world and bounce ideas off each other and that is essentially what this Summit is all about."
The summit was made possible through government support via a leverage fund established to fund opportunities that arise around the America's Cup.
The Minister of Sport, Recreation and The America's Cup, Hon. Trevor Mallard will officially close the Summit.