RS Sailing is proud to announce that its award-winning RS Venture Connect sailboat, an existing class of Para World Sailing equipment, has been selected by World Sailing as the supplied equipment of choice at an exciting new Para World Sailing event aimed specifically at youth sailors. The inaugural edition of the Youth Para World Sailing Championships, which also aims to have a fully gender balanced participation as far as competing athletes are concerned, will take place on the waters of the Braasemermeer in the Netherlands and will get underway the week after the Hague-based 2022 Youth Sailing World Championships conclude, that being from July 19 – 22.
Speaking of this news, Dan Jaspers, Head of International Sales and Business Development for RS Sailing and the Manufacturer’s Representative for the RS Venture Connect Class stated: “This really is exciting news for all those of us that have not only been supporting the campaign to reinstate sailing in the Paralympic Games but also to grow Para Sailing globally. The concept of delivering an international Youth Para Sailing event has long been discussed but never realized. This event has been designed to meet a very real need, identified by many within the international sailing community concerning the current lack of a clear ‘pathway’ for Para Sailors. Unlike Olympic sailing which clearly signposts the events which sailors need to participate in to gain the experience needed to progress their skills as well as to measure their ‘level’ against others within the same type of equipment, Para Sailing has, at least up until relatively recently, only had the Para World Sailing Championship event at which nations with Para Sailing Programs could compete at an international level.”
Registration for the 2022 Youth Para World Sailing Championships can be completed through the dedicated online entry portal. Entry is limited to one team per nation and all teams must have the endorsement of their national Para Sailing federation and/or World Sailing Member National Authority (MNA) to be eligible to attend.
Massimo Dighe, Para World Sailing Manager at World Sailing said of this news: “As seen in regattas around the world, Para Sailing is one of the most inclusive in terms of age, gender and disability. This World Championship is another step in ensuring there is a pathway for the next generation of Para Sailors from grassroots to elite level, providing a means to compete on the global stage – inside and outside of the Paralympic programme.”
Following discussions had by the members of the Para World Sailing Committee (PWSC) at its 2021 World Sailing Annual Conference meeting, with regards the potential of an international youth-focused Para Sailing event going a long way to back up the IPC requirements for more Youth activity within all Para Sports, RS Sailing, on behalf of the RS Venture Connect Class, approached World Sailing with a proposal that would make it possible to deliver a so-called ‘ready baked’ event specifically for Para Youth Sailors, at a similar time to and at a location in the Netherlands close to where the 2022 Youth Sailing World Championships would already be taking place. After a period of discussion between the members of the Para World Sailing Committee, RS Sailing, the proposed event hosts and a number of national Para Sailing organisations which had already expressed a wish for an event like this to be delivered, World Sailing agreed to sanction this proposed event and, as such, the inaugural edition of the Youth Para World Sailing Championships transitioned from a concept to reality.
When asked about how the announcement of this event would be likely to impact on Para Sailing as a whole, Dan Jaspers commented: “With a great deal of work having been done by World Sailing in the form of the Para Development Program, and with the focus of this work mainly being aimed at increase the number of nations actively engaged in Para sailing activities, no formal emphasis has previously been placed on providing a starting point for aspirant Para sailors looking to one day represent their nation on the international stage, let alone at the level of the Paralympic Games. For me, having initially developed the concept of the Para Development Program during my time as the Training and Development Manager at the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) as World Sailing was referred to at that time, I am excited by the news that a dedicated Youth-focused Para sailing event is finally being delivered. I am sure that I am not the only one that feels that this news signals a shift change in the world of Para sailing…a change that can only result in positive results for all involved, be it reinstated in the Paralympic Games, or not!”
As part of its ongoing commitment to developing Para sailing internationally, World Sailing has confirmed it will be conducting a Para Development Program Coaching Clinic prior to the Para Youth Worlds event over the weekend of July 16-17. Nations that are deemed by Para World Sailing to be eligible to attend this clinic will receive travel and accommodation subsidies for up to 2 sailors and a coach in order to lower the barrier to attendance. The entry fee for the Para Youth Worlds will also enable those participating to have access to the fleet of RS Venture Connect sailboats being supplied by RS Sailing as charter boats for the event on July 18 for an additional coached race training day.
Check out this video by World Sailing.
The RS Venture Connect
The award-winning RS Venture Connect SCS makes it possible for almost anyone to go sailing – and that means a lot to all of us at RS. Many boats have been modified for para sailing but we like to think the RS Venture Connect SCS brings a new level of designed-in, engineered adaptability to the sport, through simple plug and play options including so-called ‘sip-and-puff’ electronically assisted controls that help to configure the boat to suit sailors with most types of disability. The systems on the boat also enable the end user to change the set up between sailing sessions to suit varying requirements. This versatility encourages more Para Sailing organisations to develop para sailing programmes with versatile platforms being more cost and the simple systems used to adapt the equipment being more time efficient.
Check out more detailed information on the RS Venture Connect here.