Well, nothing new there then, I hear you say...
but no, bear with me on this.
The Youth Worlds had suitable winds to race on two of the first three days. Then it was time according to the official schedule to have a lay day... to restore tired bodies, regenerate the game plan and focus the mind on the last few days.
Has no-one realised that it's traditional at all RS:X Youth Championships [and Olympic class windsurfing regattas generally] to have good racing conditions when one decides to have a layday. The ISAF Volvo Youth World Championships is no exception.
Along came the layday and the weather was wonderful... for racing.
But NO... Everyone relaxed and had some down-time again. I mean they already spent one day ashore due to the 30 knot winds and the event was behind schedule. 60 nations have sent teams to this event which is the pinnacle of youth sailing and youth windsurfing. Second only to the Olympic sailing regatta... and of the first 4 days, only 2 were spent racing.
Now when racing resumed on the fifth day (Wednesday), they didn't race again. So instead of having raced on four of the
five days, or even three of the five days, they are now down to only two of the five days. Can someone make sense of this for me? Shouldn't laydays be held in reserve for use if the regatta is behind schedule?
Well, one immediate answer is that racing at youth sailing/windsurfing level is about more than just competition. It is a chance to meet your peer group from different nations around the world. To get to know how they think, have fun together and go home with a broader out look than you arrived with.
Very praiseworthy ideals... I'm sure, but nations signed their teams up to race. Mano a Mano for the gold medal and as a team for the coveted Volvo Trophy. Many have trained for months, even years. Parents and sponsors have invested heavily, cash and personal time.
Ideals must be lived up to. Pinnacle events have a reputation to live up to. The sailors came first and foremost to race. To do their very best and test themselves against the world's best. Experienced race managers are on hand to take difficult decisions... such as forego the pleasures of a layday.
The Volvo brand stands for excellence, longevity and robustness. In the face of whatever nature throws at you, you are above all safe in a Volvo... and you are driving a winning brand.
This championship has a lot to live up to. Maybe this time, the wrong call was made.
Race website: http://www.isafyouthworlds.com/editions/2009/index.php