This Seems strangely reminiscent of the good old days when windsurfing was expreriencing the same sort of growing pains. Now, whilst I do not want to get into a fight with anyone about anything, it seems to me that, in these days of financial hardship and turmoil, these guys should bury their differences and work for the good of the whole sport of kitesurfing.
Using a big stick such as the ISAF Eligibility Code to establish authority may be a last resort but the people who will suffer most are those competitors who are just out there to compete and to win.
This may sound 'pretty rich' coming from someone in windsurfing which itself has, as yet, failed to pull all of its different elements together under one roof. The Professional Windsurfers Association [PWA] is out there doing its own thing supported by the industry. The RS:X Class Association is also 'out there' ploughing its Olympic furrow supported by Neil Pryde who is also a key supporter of the PWA. Then there is the International Windsurfing Association. This body was originally set up to provide an administration service for its member windsurfing classes but now the IKA is also under its roof too.
So rather than just offering sage advice to the kiteboarding world, isn't it time for the different parts of the windsurfing world, PWA included, to join together with the guys from Kiteboarding and form a new body which includes everyone in the board sports community. We can all learn from each other and together we would be much stronger than apart.
My feeling is that putting everyone under one roof may be a good idea especially for competitors and their families who support them. This will require movement on all sides in the same way that resolving the stand off in the kiteboarding world will but we should keep our eyes on the main prize which is to deliver a more streamlined and efficient organisation to the racers.
Those who need any persuasion should take a look at what is going on at the World Yacht Racing Forum whose second edition has just taken place in Monaco and bear in mind a commentary by Gerald New in Scuttlebut Europe in which he says
"Sailing stands in a similar position to that experienced by other international sports in the transition from their amateur roots to a full professional basis.
The origin of major sports within a "gentleman and players" basis which had to adapt to changing circumstances of employment and leisure time is well documented and at some point most sports reach a "break point". This almost always results from the breakaway of a professional based faction from the incumbent amateur biased controlling organisation.
The breakaway to properly organised and structured professional events seen in Golf, Formula 1 and Tennis, with proper media participation, as being driven by the Volvo and the LVT will not be without some "blood on the tracks".
So there it is. We should pool our knowledge and experience to move the world of windsurfing/kitesurfing into a new era where there is a well defined pathway to the top supported by coaching and training camps. The elite should benefit from a media machine which utilizes the full power of the internet so that the promotion of our sport is leveraged to the Max.
Your comments and feedback are welcome