Tuesday, May 25, 2010


It's supped-up sailing _ fast-paced, high-speed, short, sharp and entertaining and it's another new innovation of the International Tornado Association (ITA) for 2010.

The aim of this fresh approach to sailing is to breathe new life into the sport and bring the skills and thrills of Tornado catamaran racing to a wider audience and a new generation of spectators and sailors.

Close action, engrossing battles, slick commentary, short races, legendary skippers and all starting on time. It's sailing as we have never seen it before and tailor-made to be both spectator and media friendly.

Speedsailing events will make their debut at Lindau and Travemunde in Germany this year during the German Tornado Grand Prix 25th to 27th June on Lake Constance and the World Tornado championships on Luebeck Bay from 24th to 28th of July.

"Sailing is a sport where traditionally you start a race and then disappear out of sight for hours at a time," said ITA President Roland Gaebler.
"That's not the best way to spread the world about our sport."

"We felt there was a real need to change this. To move with the times. To introduce a fresh approach to sailing and to bring it back into the public eye by having all the racing within sight of the land, the racing explained by experts and the event contest by the best sailors in the class.

"We want to demystify sailing and we really feel this is a way of doing it."

A round-robin and knock-out format will be utilized at speedsailing events with races contest by six boats and the short-courses as close as possible to the shore for spectators and the media. A Grand Final format will be used to decide the winner of the events.

In stark contrast to the one-hour plus races many Olympic classes sail, races in speedsailing events will be just 10 minutes in length and will only be delayed by the most extreme conditions as Tornados can race in anything from three knots to 35 knots.

At Lindau the event will be held on June 25th and 26th from 5pm on and at the World Championships the events will be raced in front of a promenade on July 24th and 25th from 5pm.

"We will also have numerous cameras onboard the Tornados and on shore to ensure the best images of the racing are obtained for television," Mr.
Gaebler said.

"With the Champions Race Series we have already showed that sailing can be more exciting and media friendly than many believed possible and this series surely helped inspire the Olympic Medal Race which won the IOC Golden Rings Award for the best new Olympic TV coverage.

"This motivates us to continue to try and test new event formats in a bid to spread the word about our sport with the public and the sailing community.

"The International Tornado Association wants to be seen as a driving force behind sailing growing in popularity as it bids to regain acceptance onto the Olympic program for the 2016 Olympics."

For more information regarding marketing opportunities, sponsorship and upcoming events please look at the website www.speedsailing.org or contact:

Roland Gaebler
Tel. & Fax. + 45 7464 8585 (Denmark)
Mobile: + 49 172 454 3074 (Germany)