Fred's Olympic Questions [Split]

gouvernail

Active Member
Thread starter #1
Re: New Olympic Reggatta Format

Just some questions / thoughts:

Is the purpose of the Olympics so different from the purpose of the Laser Class that we should reconsider our relationship?

The goals of the Olympics are to get people to watch, sell advertising and make money.
The goals of the Laser Class are to organize the game of laser sailing, spread information about that game which has been organized and get people involved in sailing.

Is the primary purpose of the game to just play it for the sake of its joy?

Is the primary purpose to find that one best sailor?

Is the primary purpose to entertain those who are not sailing?

Is the primary purpose of the game to accumulate wealth for those who organize competitions?

Is the primary purpose of the game to accumulate wealth for those who build Lasers?

Is the primary purpose of the game to accumulate wealth for those who win races?

Is success available to Laser sailing only when it is served with beer and cigarette advertisements?

Is it any Laser Class member's goal to have that happen??
 

Merrily

Administrator
#2
Re: New Olympic Reggatta Format

gouvernail said:
Is the purpose of the Olympics so different from the purpose of the Laser Class that we should reconsider our relationship?

The goals of the Olympics are to get people to watch, sell advertising and make money.
The goals of the Laser Class are to organize the game of laser sailing, spread information about that game which has been organized and get people involved in sailing.

Is the primary purpose of the game to just play it for the sake of its joy?

Is it any Laser Class member's goal to have that happen??
My primary purpose is the first one, joy of sailing, and everything else that I do with the class is to make that happen.

I didn't invent the Laser, though, and I believe that the people who did have the right to their own purposes with the boat, whether to spread joy or to make money and/or feed their egos with getting lots of people to watch their boat being sailed. Since I didn't create the boat, I'm just a visiter with limited rights.

Is it Classic coke yet? I don't think we have that much pull, but maybe if Gouv's 20 somethings show up, we would.

I think that it is exciting that the Laser is an Olympic class boat. It's one thing that drew me to the boat--probably naively. As in it must be good, it's an Olympic class boat. You gotta admit it is ego satisfying to sail this boat when it is also being sailed at the Olympic level.

Merrily
 

49208

Tentmaker
#3
Re: New Olympic Reggatta Format

Any chance of breaking this thread apart starting with Gouv's #19 entry - His questions deserve their own thread IMHO
 

Merrily

Administrator
#4
Re: New Olympic Reggatta Format

49208 said:
Any chance of breaking this thread apart starting with Gouv's #19 entry - His questions deserve their own thread IMHO
I think that's a good idea, but Bradley will have to do it. I don't have the programming access to make it pretty.

Merrily
 
#5
As long as the Olympic part of Lasering remains a subset, I think all will be well. One of the things I love about Lasering is the opportunity to be on the same course as Olympic aspirants and world champions from time to time. It's humbling, but exciting to witness their skill level. I also love a good laid back Masters regatta, with somebody handing you a beer for the sail in at the end of the day. I don't know a whole lot about the politics or division of labor of managing things, but it seems as long as the Laser class caters to the unwashed masses who make up the bulk of the fleet and aren't going to the trials anytime soon, and let US Sailing take the Olympians under their wing, then one group's needs shouldn't interfere with the others. Things like 'full rig=men, radial=women' need to be confined to Olympic-organized events and kept out of Laser class-organized events. I'd say the same for the medal fleet business; it's fine for OCR because it's understood that the only reason Lasers are there is because it's the equipment for the 2008 Olympics, but if I go to Nationals or Midwinters I want to race everybody in all the races 'till the end of the regatta.
 
#6
I think the question should be rephrased.

Does the Laser being a part of the Olympics compromise the future of the class in some way, or reduce the participation and enjoyment of the normal class members?

Typically when a boat is selected as an Olympic class, the resulting technical changes and influx of high end competitors leads to a real reduction in the enjoyment of the average sailor, and a steep increase in costs.

The Laser classes have managed to pick their way through the minefield, by staying true to the original purpose of the boat, a simple highly consistent one design. Costs have gone up somewhat, but not more than the few hundred dollars required to replace the rigging systems, and there are low cost alternatives to the pricey hardware.

There are more Laser events now than there were before it was an Olympic class, I believe, participation in events is good, and I agree that there is some cool factor in sailing the same boat that they are sailing in the Olympics.

There are real problems too, including having ISAF sticking their nose in the class and regatta's, as well as the increasing segregation of men and women.

On the whole, it seems to have been a win for the class, from my viewpoint.

Chris DeBruyn
#25595
Philadelphia
 

EVO

New Member
#7
These Olympic questions are probably being discussed in every established Olympic class. I know that the Star Class has had to change some class rules to keep the Olympic people and ISAF happy. (and in my opinion the Star Class is one of the strongest & best run in the sport.)

These class versus olympic questions are going to get tougher as they try to move sailing into a more TV and spectator friendly sport. This trend has been going on for the last 20 years. The Olympics are now a TV event for entertainment and no longer a sports event. That being said - Why do the TV ratings go down every Olympics?

I thought we all raced for the fun, competition, excitement etc. Who cares if our sport is on TV or people like to watch it?
 
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