The year 2016 has been filled with plenty of Finn action, including the Rio Olympics with the Finns producing some of the best Olympic sailing action on the ocean in front of Copacabana beach in strong winds and huge waves. The physicality of Finn sailing was shown to the world of sailing spectators and the overall quality and durability of the Finn equipment allowed this to happen.
Rio has showed again that the format of Olympic sailing and the way our sport is broadcast to the public are the key factors if the sport wants to increase viewers and general awareness in the mass media. So in the near future these are the areas our Association is going to further explore.
In the footsteps of our sailing heroes, new Finn champions were born in the course of the last Olympic quadrennium and the show will go on in the years leading up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. The class will continue the focused work on attracting as many young sailors to the Finn as possible whilst ensuring the strong geographical presence of the class around the globe.
Rio evidenced that with a concentrated and well-structured approach relatively new Finn nations can produce surprisingly good results even at the highest level. This will give new countries and sailors the necessary motivation to join the game and IFA will do its best to secure the necessary support from the background.
Finally, let me take this opportunity to thank the IFA Executive and National class officials as well as all Finn friends around the world for their work, support and dedication over the last years and wish all of you a Happy New Year.
This month we have been remembering the great Paul Elvstrøm, who died at the age of 88 at the begining of December.
Paul Elvstrøm had an immeasurable impact on almost every corner of the sailing world, redefining how to race a sailboat and getting involved in almost every aspect of design, construction and marketing, but it was through his time in the Finn that he became a household name and a sailing superstar in Denmark.
Read the full Finn class tribute, with an extensive gallery, here.