Word of our President, sailing season ’15

Dear Sailors, friends and supporters,

The year 2014 has passed and overall we believe it was a successful one. Although the class is still suffering from the losses due to the new Olympic catamaran, we managed to offer a decent service for the sailors and organized a whole bunch of high class events. In 2014 our Belgian and Dutch friends got their Class Associations running and in U.K we noticed vital signs as well. Our friends in the U.S.A. saw a change in their management, as Mark Thomson took over from Daniel Hearn as a chairman in summer. Thanks to Kathleen from TheBoatShop.be in Belgium, the website was refurbished and can be managed with state-of-the-art tools. Stéphane and Antoine did a brilliant job in getting our financial issues solved and in summer 2014, the International Class Association was finally registered in France. The Chairman attended the International Annual Meeting of ISAF in Palma de Mallorca in November to further push the visibility of the Formula 16 Class. Meanwhile the Class Association is fully workable and the Executive Committee would like to express its gratitude to everyone involved in those big achievements. And we are very happy noticing an overall growth of the class worldwide, as the amount of ISAF stickers purchased indicates.

Almost every National Class Association started the sailing season with race clinics for the advanced as well as trainings for beginners. In Europe, Gill De Bruyne combined delivering new boats with a training event at Lago di Como and in the U.S. Robbie Daniel offered lots of possibilities for trainings as well. The highlights of our sailing season surely were the Worlds in the U.S. sailing-hotspot Newport/RI and the Europeans in Le Touquet on the Channel coast. Both events had more than 30 boats registered and both events got attention in the mass media. But all the other events, ranging from big regattas like Carnac or Texel, and the Nationals in most of our member countries, down to the many club events worldwide are important as well, as they provide the platform for our understanding of sailing.

In summer we started a campaign to promote the Formula 16 boats as the next ISAF youth multihull. ISAF had announced that the forthcoming youth catamaran should be equipped with dagger boards and a spinnaker, which in turn ends the era of the current youth boats Sirena SL16 as well as the Hobie16. ISAF asked for offers and although the Class Association can’t do that, we tried to convince the ISAF to not add another new boat to the park, but instead choose F16 boats as they have proven their potential for youth sailing.

The year 2015 will be challenging. In January, we as the Formula16 Class will show up at the Worlds’ biggest boat show in Düsseldorf, Germany. Here we will be part of a “Multihull-Forum”, where all aspects of multihull sailing will be presented to the sailing world. For our class, this boat show will be another chance to promote the F16 class to ISAF as the next youth multihull, as the decision on this issue was postponed in Palma last year. But the more important message will be showing the versatility of the F16 class, which is unmatched in beach catamaran sailing.

As we decided in Newport on Worlds every 2 years, there will only be Continental Championships in 2015. In Europe, Cesenatico on the Adriatic coast, Italy, will host the Europeans 2015. There will be Nationals in Australia and in the U.S.A, which in fact are Continentals as well. The European sailing season will start with clinics in France and Italy. All events will be published in our race calendar by the end of January. And we are still open for bids for the Worlds 2016. So far, the U.S.A. and Australia have declared their interest.

The Management Committee wishes you a lucky season. May the best ones win the races and we hope that all of you will help us in promoting some of the best boats around.

All the best

Thomas
President F16 class