President - Tom Bojland (DEN) (in Chair)|
Secretary - Chris Thorne (GBR)
Chairman IRC- Rob Napier (GBR)
Approximately sixty members
Treasurer - Stephen Burwood (GBR) - Treasurer|
Jean-Baptiste Dupont (FRA) – Vice President
1. Minutes of the 2003 AGM:
1.1 These had been circulated to National Associations and had been available on the web site since September 2003. Proposed by Aaron Ross (USA) and seconded by Ethan Bixby (USA) that the minutes be taken as read and approved. Approved nem con.
2. President’s Report:
2.1 The President presented the following report: -
”Dear friends, After the a successful worlds in Malmø. Sweden, the biggest 505 regatta ever in Scandinavia, it has been a year of positives, but some negative things as well.
To the positive things first. The class seems growing in North America, I don´t think I ever had seen such a large number of North American boats in one place before, and the quality of the fleet is also very high. The class in Australia also seems to do pretty well. The UK is back on the map with a strong contingent present here, and I hope that the worlds in Hayling island in 2006 will help the class to grow even more.
Germany and France reports that the class is doing wery well with a large number of local regattas and in Germany with more than 100 active teams on thier ranking list. But it is also a fact that there are only a very small number of Europeans here – apart from the United Kingdom.
I believe the national assocations in Europe have to think about how they urge the teams to go to international events because that is one of the things that makes us different from all the factory one design classes, we are international and you can become a true world champion here.
I think it is important to have maybe fewer but better and bigger 505 regattas in Europe, in a normal weekend there might be 3 to 4 regattas at the same time, and that is in a area less than half the size of USA
I believe that we should concentrate on making the quality of the Eurocups better, The IEC have a sub committee working on this, and I hope to see some positive changes in the future.
I would also like to see some kind of a World Ranking list, and it should be a list for several purposes. My idea is that that all regattas at national or state championship level should count, so we will have all the active 505 sailors on it, and not only us sitting here today. It will be a way to tie the class better together so the young kids back in the club at home, actually can see that they are on the same list as the world champions and they have to possibility to climb the list if they do well at home, but if they travel to the championship in their neighbouring country or state, they will climb even more.
The other advantage of a ranking list is that if potential 505 sailors could look on the ISAF website and see the official 505 World ranking list with 400 active teams, it could be a good way of marketing the class. Nobody outside the Olympic classes does this today.
These is some of my thoughts, but I´m very open for some good ideas and help from you guys. How should we do it, which scoring system etc? Please let me know if you are interested in helping bringing these ideas to life.
I also want you all to use our international mailing list more, especially with links of results from local regattas. This is also a way to tie the class better together.
We have some issues and problems at the measurement this year. Rob Napier will deal with this in his report later.
We are in the lucky situation that we have several boatbuilders in all continents, many of them active sailors in the class, that means that they will push each other to make the best 505´s and besides that never let the IRC fall to sleep.
Next year we will have the worlds in Warnemunde. I am very confident that thois will be a great event. The Germans showed us in 1993 that they are great organizers off-shore as well as on-shore. 85 teams have already registered thier entry, including a Polish team, so it seems a new 505 country is born. Maybe we will have the biggest 505 worlds ever! And in 2006 we have the 50th anniversary of the World Championships at Hayling Island– what can i say, it can only be good!
In general I don´t see other classes as a threat to the 505 Class, but I do see a general decrease in sailing as a threat. So therefore it is your duty and hopefully pleasure to act as ambassadors for our sport to take the kid from your local sailing club on a ride in the wire and sell him the dream!
Besides that I want to thank the rest of the members of the IEC and IRC for their efforts, and also a thank to the all class officers in the national associations.”
2.2 The President’s report was received with applause.
3. Secretary’s Report:
3.1 The International Secretary reported that membership had again fallen slightly from 1168 in 2002 to 1130 in 2003. Following the usual trend after hosting a World Championship, AUS had dropped 56 members from 146 to 90, but this was offset by small increases in the memberships in both France and Germany. Unfortunately it appears that we no longer have any active membership in Kenya or Ireland, as the International office has had no contact with either for over two years. A positive step is that there are now apparently three boats racing regularly in Poland and with the German fleet being so strong an active there is a real opportunity to grow another national fleet here. We currently have fleets in sixteen countries on five continents, although it is worry that we only have seven countries represented at the current World Championship.
Subscription returns and payments for 2004 are due on 1 October.
There were twenty new boats registered in 2003. 2004 has seen an upturn with eighteen registered between January and August, spread between eight builders, including three by a new builder in Santa Cruz, Pegasus.
At the Malmø AGM we were only able to announce a provisional result of the ballot for to remove the ban on spars being made from anything other than aluminium or wood. The final result was declared in September, and was 97 for the proposal and 192 against. A majority in AUS, BEL, CAN, GBR and RSA voted in favour but USA, GER, and FRA were against, with the German fleet in particular registering a large no vote.
Our rules do not allow the same proposal to be voted on within three years, but since the ballot followed a decision at the 2002 AGM, it could be raised again at the 2005 AGM.
4. Treasurer’s Report:
In the absence of the Treasurer the Secretary presented the accounts for 2003. Copies had been circulated to those present at the start of the meeting, and had been sent to National Secretaries and posted on Association Web site. Patrick McCosh (ZIM) had audited the accounts.
Expenditure exceeded income during the year by nearly £3,900. This was mainly due to about £5,300 being spent on having the TV programme made of the Fremantle Worlds and then producing VHS and DVD copies of this that were distributed to all National Associations for publicity purposes.
Subscription income was down, although this was partly due to two national associations making pre payments in 2002, as the actual membership numbers did not reduce by the amount suggested by the accounts.
Total reserves at the year end were about GBP 32,500 (USD 58,000, EUR 46,000).
It was proposed that the accounts be approved, by Dan Marino (USA) and seconded by Pip Pearson (AUS). Approved nem con.
5. Appointment of Auditor:
Patrick McCosh (ZIM) had indicated that he would be willing to continue. Nominated by John Wyles (USA), seconded by Pip Pearson (AUS). His appointment was approved nem con.
6. International Rules Committee:
The Chairman reported that following the discussion in Malmo, the Committee had been issued a clarification of the centreboard case rule 6.2, confirming that the board had to be capable of being fully retracted into the boat while sailing.
Subsequently an issue had arisen as to how the thwart required by 5.6.2 should be measured, although further research was required before a ruling could be considered on this issue.
As a number of rule changes had been proposed for discussion by members the Chairman suggested that the best way of dealing with these was to have short discussion on each followed by an indication of the views of the meeting, after which the IRC would consider what rule changes may be necessary or appropriate. As there was a need to review our class measurement rules to align them more closely with the ISAF Equipment Rules of Sailing (ERS) there would be an opportunity to make any clarifications considered necessary as part of this process.
Thwarts: Problems had arisen over what constituted the centreboard case top and what was the thwart, and also whether the 153mm max width measurement had to made at right angles to the base line or not. The Chairman’s view was that a requirement to have a thwart, but then restrict the width of that thwart was illogical, and that if it were removed there was no evidence that builders would do anything radically different. If a thwart was required to support the centreboard case they would include it, but most builders tried to keep an open cockpit for ease of crewing. Indeed the boat leading the current championship had no forward thwart and a minimal thwart towards the rear of the case. However, a majority of those present thought that the IRC should first see if the rule could be clarified rather than abolish it.
Carbon Spars: Although there had been a strong vote against allowing carbon masts, there was a view that carbon booms and spinnaker poles should be allowed, although to make carbon booms effective, at least a partially loose footed main may be desirable. The meeting was evenly divided between those who wished to see such a change and those who did not.
Fully Battened Sails: The Chairman had undertaken some research by talking to sail makers as to the practical consequences of introducing fully battened mainsails. The argument for was that the increase in the competitive life of the sail would significantly outweigh the additional initial cost. The arguments against were that it would limit the ability to de-power the boat and make it harder for lighter crews to sail in stronger winds. The view was also expressed that the whole profile of the sail plan would need reconsidering if going to fully battened sails was to be considered. The Chairman suggested that no proposal could be formulated until some trials had been conducted. The IRC would need to set some criteria for such trials and then try and encourage some sail makers to support them.
Centreboard Length / Lifting pins: The new Pegasus boat had, probably for the first time, produced a centreboard case to the maximum dimensions allowed under the rules. This involved introducing a support for the mast step that bridged the front of the case, and a pin that was adjustable fore and aft as well as vertically so that the board could be moved far enough back to be effective. It had allowed them to introduce a board that was some 1.7 m below the boat, compared with an average for most high aspect boards of about 1.5m. Some had expressed concern at this development and favoured a limit on the maximum length of the board. Others wanted a different restriction on the sliding pin, or a ban on them altogether. Others pointed out that if adjustable pins were banned, this would lead to people having two centreboards, one for light air and one for heavy, which would be more expensive than having one board with a lifting mechanism. There was no clear direction from the meeting and the Chairman said that the IRC would consider the issue in the light of whether it became clear that extreme boards produced any significant performance gain.
Weight: A proposal had been received that a boat that was wet when presented for weighing at a championship should have a 2kg penalty imposed on top of the minimum weight. A boat cannot be weighed in a wet condition under our rules, and any deliberate attempt to cheat is subject to sanction under RRS 69, the Chairman could not see the point of such an amendment.
Registration of Moulds and Copyright: A proposal had been received stating that the intellectual property in the boat should be the property of the class and be made freely available to all members. The Secretary pointed out that the IP of the design was the designer’s, and that this was acknowledged by the both Class and ISAF. The royalty payment made was minimal. The IGC did not consider that this was an issue worth debating, and any resolution would probably have no legal effect. Registering moulds would imply a system of licensing builders. Although other classes did this, our control point had always been at the initial measurement of each boat and the class was not set up with either the equipment or infrastructure to measure moulds. Given the relative low number of boats built, the cost of changing our system or expecting builders to pay for it would be unrealistic.
Boat complexity: Holger Jess expressed the view that the class should have stricter rules to limit innovation and development as he found that the apparent complexity and cost of the boat was making it unattractive to younger sailors, eg those coming out of boats like the 420. Ali Meller also supported reducing complexity. However, while there was general support for making the boat accessible to sailors with lower budgets, no specific suggestions were made that received general support. The Chairman agreed that this could be something on which the IRC would welcome feed back from the National Associations.
Future Action: The Secretary advised that if the IRC came forward with a review of the rules that received clear endorsement from the IGC, there was no reason to wait until the next AGM to go to ballot. However, much would depend on the quality of the debate. It was agreed that a questionnaire would be circulated to all national associations to try and canvas member’s views on the changes raised at this AGM and others that had also been discussed recently. The results of this would help the IRC identify and prioritise future rule amendments.
7. Election of Officers:
The Secretary announced that the following had been nominations had been received:
President: Tom Bojland – nominated by Danish Association
Vice President: Jean-Baptiste Dupont – nominated by French Association
Both were the current office holders, and had indicated their willingness to stand for a further term. No other nominations had been received.
The Secretary declared the above to be duly elected to the respective positions, and the President resumed the chair.
8. Proposed Rule Changes:
The Secretary advised that no proposals had been received that had not been dealt with during the open discussion that formed part of the Rules Committee report.
9. World Championships 2005
Holger Jess confirmed that arrangements were progressing well and a number of good sponsors had been secured. Nearly 90 teams had “pre registered” ie indicating their intention to attend on the event web site. Enquires were taking place into the possibility of having some keel boats available for an informal match racing series to take place in the evenings. Container sponsorship through MACS was likely and details would be made available soon.
10 World Championship 2006
Following the decision to grant the 2006 Worlds to the UK, working in conjunction with France, Martin Stainsby gave a presentation on the detailed proposals for the event at Hayling Island. A detailed response confirming compliance with the Associations requirements had been made, along with a draft budget. No major sponsor had yet been secured but a number of possibilities were being worked on. The dates, 24 July – 6 August (to include the pre worlds) had been chosen to coincide with neap tides during the Worlds week, although the tide influence in the normal racing area was normally slight. The clubhouse had been rebuilt in 2003 and there was also basic accommodation on site for 120. After a few questions the decision made at the 2003 AGM to hold the 2006 Championships at Hayling Island was ratified nem con.
11 2007 World Championships
The only bid received was from the Australian Association, to host the event in at the Brighton & Seacliff Yacht Club in Adelaide.
Pip Pearson spoke in support of the proposal. Adelaide had experience of running major regattas and had hosted the 505 Worlds in 1983. The event would probably be held in early February which would be outside the peak Christmas & New Year period. At this time of year the weather would be hot but normally there are sea breezes of between 10 and 20 knots. Based on the experience of running major regattas in the area recently the Australian Association was confident of obtaining sponsorship for the event. Support had already been obtained from the State of South Australia.
A couple of people asked if it were possible to move the championships so that they took place over the Christmas and New year period, one because this would ensure that the Europeans had their boats back in time for the start of the European season and another because it would involve people using less leave. However, Pip Pearson emphasised that the club was only willing to do the event out of the peak period, and that this also had advantages for the competitors as air travel and accommodation would be cheaper. The sea breezes were also likely to be stronger in February.
The meeting approved the application nem con.
The meeting closed at 10.40 am
C G Thorne
As there had been an extended discussion on various possible changes to the rules under item 6, the scheduled open forum was not held.