The RYA is continuing with its plans, activities and support of our sailors and of ISAF towards sailing’s return to the Paralympic Games, following January’s announcement that sailing has been removed from the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics.
At the time the RYA reacted to the ‘hugely disappointing news’ for the sport of disabled sailing worldwide and for the British Sailing Team athletes already working hard towards Tokyo while acknowledging the loss to the Paralympic Games, as sailing provides a unique element to the sporting programme.
The RYA has welcomed ISAF’s subsequent efforts and discussions with the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) in an attempt to reinstate sailing for Tokyo 2020, and we continue working proactively with ISAF to support developing Paralympic sailing nations.
Following the integration of the former world disabled sailing body, International Association for Disabled Sailing (IFDS), into ISAF, in May ISAF announced that the Disabled Sailing Committee (DSC) has been reconstituted and has named Betsy Alison (USA) as the new Chair, with five new DSC members from Australia, China, Italy, Japan and New Zealand supporting her.
On 1 June sailing’s international governing body declared it would be campaigning for Disabled Sailing’s inclusion in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.
The RYA will continue work to support ISAF in whatever way we can to have sailing reinstated at the Paralympic Games at the earliest possible opportunity.
Helena Gets First Rio Nod
Reigning 2.4mR Paralympic champion, Helena Lucas, is the first British athlete across any sport to be selected for Rio 2016, the British Paralympic Association (BPA) announced in April.
On what was her 40th birthday, Helena was ratified to represent ParalympicsGB in Brazil next year, at the culmination of a selection campaign in which Lucas produced consistent performances to prove her form, fending off tough competition for the place in the 2.4mR class from compatriot Megan Pascoe.
On winning gold at London 2012, Helena was the first GB sailor to win a Paralympic medal since the sport became a full part of the Paralympic programme in 2000, and did so as the only female sailor amid an otherwise all-male 2.4mR fleet.