Friday, August 23, 2013

Sailing today

Something is happening in sailing today. It's changing. Sailing is changing. It used to be a gentleman sport. Being in the game and sailing by the rules was the most important thing. Much more important than winning. When I was a kid, we always took our penalty turns with no quarrel, no questions. Today, it seems grown men have problems admitting they made a mistake.
It's a beautiful day out there
It's happening everywhere. Local races, Nationals, Worlds, Olympics. Ofcource the socalled "showcase of sailing" has the problem too. Right now the entire AC circus is in Limbo, because the Oracle team is awaiting a rule 69 investigation. Yes, it's about rule 69. Gross misconduct. This rule is becoming the single rule of sailing the crowd understands. It was there in Perth 2011. It was murmured at the Olympics 2012, and now it's in the AC circus 2013. What's on peoples mind, what's in their memory, is sailors quarreling about who's being unfair. Not good for sailing.
A perfect spot for contemplation
The reality would - under normal conditions - be the defending team looking at a two year ban from sailing. Isn't that a laugh? Team Oracle unable to defend the title! The AC circus isn't normal. It is a freakshow, and the show must go on. I am guessing they will end up picking a scape goat and carry on with business as usual. After all, - it is Larry's show. Question is: Who will want to be in that show when the host is - hmm - not entirely trustworthy? How can trust be restored? Can trust be restored?
Virtual or real
What seems to be the problem is grown men with too much testoterone. Is there too much at stake? Would it be unbearable to loose? Unaffordable even? Is that what's causing the problems? Are the stakes so high that the participants cannot see clearly and determine what's right and wrong? Has sailing become about winning at any cost? Pathetic, don't you think? Grown men outgrown by their own game? Even if this is just about 2.5kg there is no excuse. Cheating is cheating. The real problem is - what happens at the big games is copied by our kids and junior sailors in those smalltime races and nationals, because their socalled "heroes" are doing it. Now that's bad for sailing.

I think I'll chant Elvtrøms famous sailing philosophy and go sailing in RL. The AC sailors need to chant it too, or they might as well shut it all down. 

1 comment:

  1. Great rant, Nudel!!!

    For me the whole AC circus is dead and buried for good. I announced it a couple weeks ago already: no more AC or LVC coverage on Orcablog. I never found matchracing particularly interesting but if you're into this kind of sport there are much better organized and more entertaining series out there. The RC-44s series and the Alpari World Matching Tour for example.
    Less bitching, more sailing!


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